This article is part of Football League World’s ‘What does the future hold?’ series, this content strand is where we evaluate and subjectively debate a player’s future at their current club…
It’s safe to say that Barnsley’s survival hopes in the Championship could hinge on the performances from the club’s top goalscorer Cauley Woodrow.
The Tykes currently find themselves sat bottom of the second tier standings, and the club’s supporters have every reason to be concerned with Gerhard Struber’s side seven points adrift of safety with nine league games remaining of this year’s campaign.
They’ve already shown that they can show much-needed fight at a crucial stage of the season, but back-to-back defeats against Reading and Cardiff City have put the Tykes back into trouble at the worst possible time, especially with their relegation rivals picking up valuable points in their quest to retain their Championship status this term.
Woodrow has been one of the few players to show consistency in his performances this season though, with the forward scoring 15 goals in all competitions this term, and Struber will be hoping that the striker can lead his team from the front and fire them up the Championship table when their season gets back underway.
Woodrow’s impressive showings this season are unlikely to have gone unnoticed though, and it wouldn’t come as a surprise to see him attracting interest in the summer when the transfer window reopens.
The former Fulham man has previously attracted interest from Bristol City, Nottingham Forest and Leeds United according to a report from The Mirror (via Bristol Live).
Given that the original link between the clubs and Woodrow was early into the January transfer window, it seems unlikely that the likes of Leeds and Bristol City will reignite their interest in the Barnsley forward in the summer.
Leeds already signed Jean-Kevin Augustin as Eddie Nketiah’s replacement, and given the fact that he can’t get into the Whites’ starting XI this season ahead of Patrick Bamford, signing another striker would be a wasted move for all parties involved. Woodrow certainly has the quality to be playing Premier League football in the future, but you would imagine that he’d almost certainly be far down the pecking order in Marcelo Bielsa’s plans at Elland Road.
A move to Bristol City is another one that seems unlikely ahead of the summer, with the Robins signing Nahki Wells for a fee believed to be in the region of £5m. Even though both players have different qualities, Lee Johnson operates with one striker in his team, and it seems unlikely that he’ll want to keep his ‘big money’ signing on the substitutes bench.
Nottingham Forest could well be tempted to register their interest in the forward again in the coming months, as they are in need of a striker with a proven record to challenge Lewis Grabban for his starting spot. But again, a lot could depend on whether Sabri Lamouch’s side are to win promotion into the Premier League this term, as you would imagine that the Reds boss will have more experienced transfer targets in mind during the summer transfer window.
Woodrow’s future is likely to be away from Oakwell and Barnsley if they’re to be relegated back into League One this season, as he’s shown that he’s more than capable of playing to a high standard in the Championship this season. But it’s important that he weighs up his options going forward, as he’ll be wanting to get regular minutes under his belt at any potential suitors for his services in the future.
Can you score full marks on this Barnsley quiz?