Mads Andersen has responded ‘professionally’ to being dropped and could still play a key role for Barnsley this season, says his fellow Reds centre-back Michael Sollbauer. 

Andersen, 22, has been left out of the squad for the last four matches after making some costly mistakes. Sollbauer told the Chronicle: “He will come back stronger, for sure. It’s not an easy way for a young player to learn. But we are all professionals and he has to learn quickly and learn the hard way.

"We spoke to him as a team directly after the decision from the staff and told him that he is one of us and he was not the only one who did mistakes. We are happy that he is in our team, he is really professional and he is working really hard in training. He will be important for us in this season because we need every player. It is not easy when you are not in the first 11 or the squad, but you have to learn.”

Sollbauer, 29, has been in Barnsley for six weeks since moving from Wolfsberger in his native Austria.  He has recently been joined by his wife and their young son. He said: “I feel really settled now. It is really important that my family are with me. They have been here for two weeks. This is much easier for me.  I have a small boy so it’s good that I can spend time with him.

“I am happy to be here in Barnsley and I still believe we can stay in the league. From what I have seen so far, it is a tough league and really different to Austria.  But I think I am adapting well.  My team is really good, not good in the table but really good in the games.”

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Sollbauer is enjoying playing with Finnish centre-back Aapo Halme. He said: “It is working well. It is not only Aapo, but he has played really well in these last games. Jordan (Williams), Kili (Ludewig) and the other defenders did a really good job, and the other players.” 

Barnsley have swapped between two and three centre-backs in recent games. Sollbauer said: “It’s good to have more possibilities. Everybody can improve his style of play and be flexible. It is not a big change if we play three or two, it is just small details. If the gaffer changes the system, it helps us a lot. We did not lose because of the system in Reading.”

Sollbauer also dismissed suggestions Barnsley lost in Reading on Saturday because they were tired after playing seven times in February.  He said: “We won’t take this excuse. We are professional and everybody is fit enough. The last games showed that we are good in shape.” Sollbauer is now looking forward to facing direct Cardiff City tomorrow.

“If this is their style, then we will do everything to prepare for this style. I am not afraid of this style. We have done really well against this style in other games. We have to be more close together, better in our style and we go more straight to the goal.”