This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Barnsley travel to Bristol City on Saturday with the Robins winless in their last 16 home league games.
The Tykes are on a barren run themselves without a win in 12 in the league with the pressure cranking up around Markus Schopp’s position in the dugout by the week.
After Gerhard Struber and Valerien Ismael joined the club from the Austrian Bundesliga to great degrees of success the expectations were high upon Schopp’s arrival this summer. However, his methods have not been well received by the players who are looking like relegation fodder.
Having surprised the rest of the division in their run to the play-off semi finals in 2020/21 it is clear that the squad has the ability to be competing far higher up in the Championship. If the poor form continues Schopp’s days are numbered.
Here, we gathered the thoughts of a selection of FLW writers on whether they think Schopp should be sacked if the Tykes do not beat Bristol City on Saturday…
It’s tough to say whether or not this rests on just a single result.
Things aren’t going well for Barnsley and they are up against it in the Championship. They’ve fallen from a play-off semi final to become relegation fodder in a matter of months.
That’s not all Schopp’s fault, of course, but he’s the manager and will be the man getting the axe unless something changes.
The reason why I’m not 100% sure Barnsley will sack him if they lose to Bristol City is the position the club are in when it comes to a successor.
Barnsley clearly had faith just a couple of months ago that Schopp was the man to take them forwards, loading him up with a decent contract.
It’s difficult to see them firing him this early if they can’t upgrade in the dugout with someone to lead the fight against relegation.
That kind of scenario will take a bit of planning. That might already be underway but it’s difficult to say that Schopp’s fate rests on this Saturday’s result. That’s rarely the situation.
Quiz: Do you know what club these 28 ex-Barnsley players are playing at now?
I think they’ll consider it, yes.
I’m sure Barnsley don’t want to have to think about sacking a manager as he has not been at the club long and he’s the latest to come in that they feel from their system should work but, clearly, the results on the pitch do not lie.
Fans have been unhappy with some of the changes he has made since arriving and it just looks as though the players aren’t quite getting what is being asked of them at the moment under Schopp.
Of course, time would help them get the message but the Championship doesn’t afford you much of that and with the likes of Cardiff getting twitchy and pulling the trigger on their manager now, I’d not be surprised if the Tykes soon followed suit.
Markus Schopp is certainly hanging on to his job by a thread at the moment but there does seem to be some appetite from the Tykes’ hierarchy to provide him with more time to try and turn things around.
The game against Bristol City at the weekend is one that represents a chance for Schopp to finally end Barnsley’s terrible recent record. That is considering the record that the Robins have at Ashton Gate this season and under Nigel Pearson’s tenure.
Anything other than a win should see pressure remain firmly on Schopp because it would then be just one win in 15 for him in charge of Barnsley. That is a terrible record to have considering that this group of players made the play-offs in the Championship last term.
It could very well be win or bust for him and Schopp’s job should not be secure if the Tykes’ winless run goes on against Bristol City.