Jacob Brown says Barnsley’s players are mildly disappointed not to be returning to training tomorrow but are still hopeful of completing the season and fighting for survival. 

The Reds had been due to return on May 16 but that has been pushed back nine days. Brown told the Chronicle: “Originally we were told we would be back training on Saturday. We had all got our hopes up but an extra week isn’t too bad. All the players are buzzing to get back to training, because it has been so long, but the main thing is everyone’s health and safety. It’s good that there seems to be some movement. 

“We just have to sit tight, see what happens and do as we’re told. We know we are not key workers, we’re only footballers but, if we are told we have to go back then – as long as it’s safe – we will want to do that because it’s been two months and it’s not the same when you are just running on your own at home. There is a lot of talk going on about whether the season will end or not. There is not one footballer out there who doesn’t want to play.”

Players are likely to be tested regularly when they return to training.  Brown said: “We need to make sure it is safe because we’ll be coming home to our families. Some players might be living with people who are vulnerable.”

If the season cannot be concluded, it could be declared ‘null and void’ or decided on a points-per-game basis which would relegate Barnsley who are seven points adrift of safety in last place. Brown said: “Nine games might not seem a lot but there are enough games to make a difference. If we were to go down without playing, it would be devastating. It will affect a lot of clubs whether they are the top or the bottom. of the league. The players won’t decide what happens but, whatever the decision is, we have to deal with it.  “If the games aren’t finished, however they decide the tables won’t be a true tale of the season.”

Brown was at the club when Barnsley went down to League One in 2014 and 2018. He said: “For any player, the last thing you want is to get relegated. “But that’s on us. If the season carries on, we still have the chance to stay up. “If the season finishes and we are in the bottom three, then we haven’t been good enough.”