Barnsley manager Daniel Stendel is making preparation for the step up to the Championship next season, with Mansfield Town winger CJ Hamilton his latest target, as exclusively reported on Football League World.
Hamilton was a regular in the Mansfield side that narrowly missed out on promotion via the play-offs, having finished the regular season in fourth place in the table.
So after an impressive season where he scored 13 goals and recorded seven assists in 53 appearances in all competitions last season, would he start for the Tykes if he made the move to Oakwell?
“He should start, particularly at the beginning of the season to showcase what he can do.
“Hamilton is feared by League Two defences but a lot depends on how he handles the step up in standard.
“A two division jump can often take a while to adjust to, and in a Barnsley side which could struggle next year he may find it difficult to make his mark, but despite that he is deserving of this opportunity.”
“Six months ago I would have said yes, but I’m not so sure he’s Championship level.
“Mansfield have good players, but none of them really shone during that run-in.
“Hamilton has pace, trickery and can chip in with a goal, but it’s one thing bagging against Morecambe, entirely another to do it against Middlesbrough.
“I think it’s a step too far.”
“Hamilton was one of the standout players in League Two last season and he definitely deserves his chance to prove himself at a higher level.
“He could be a very important player for Barnsley although I’m not sure whether he’d be good enough to start for them straight away.
“I think Daniel Stendel will be able to get the best out of him though and he could develop into one of their best players.
“Even if he doesn’t start every week, he’d still be a very useful player to have in the squad.”
“I’m not sure he’d be a regular stater for the Tykes.
“There’s no doubt in my mind that Hamilton is a player with real quality and a point to prove in the higher divisions.
“But having scored for fun in League Two, I think a step up to the Championship will be too tough for him.
“There is a real difference in quality, and I think defenders would be able to contain him in the Championship if he signed for Barnsley.
“They already have strong options up front, and Hamilton would struggle to race his way into their starting XI.”