POYA Asbaghi has given the Barnsley players a kick up the backside in his first week as head coach, says Jordan Williams.

The Swede was appointed head coach last week, following the sacking of Markus Schopp almost a month ago.

He has taken training all week and, despite a 2-0 home loss to Swansea City in his first game on Wednesday, Williams has been impressed.

The defender told the Chronicle: “The new manager has given us a kick up the a*** and told us we need to start believing more.

In Text Promo Image

“Hopefully we start winning games. We’ve only had a few days with him but he has set the foundations.

“As the games go on we will work on attacking more and you’ll see the style of play more.

“He’s been very good, he’s set the framework of what he wants.

“He has told us what he wants us to do as a team, to be hard to beat.

“I like his style of play, he’s given us clear instructions early doors.”

Asbaghi has taken over a side who have lost ten of their last 11 games and are six points from safety in second-bottom in the Championship.

It is a sharp drop-off after they finished fifth last season and lost out in the play-off semi-finals.

Williams said: “We’re losing too many games and we’re too open.

“We need to get together, be tight in the middle of the park and try to start winning some games.

“It’s hard to take after last season but these things can happen in football.”

Barnsley are now due to visit third-bottom Peterborough United tomorrow.

Williams said: “It’s a big game.

“We will go into the game with confidence knowing we have a good framework. I think we can go there and win.

“It’s all to play for.

“Peterborough are a good team but I feel we have enough calibre to go there, put in a good performance and win.”

Despite being only 22 years old, Williams is one of the longest-serving players in the Barnsley squad.

He arrived in the summer of 2018 and has experienced a promotion, a final day escape from relegation and last season’s play-off challenge while playing under five head coaches and two caretakers.

He has made 85 appearances for the Reds, including starts in the last three games having been mainly a substitute across the previous year in which he battled with various injuries.

He said: “It’s been good to get back in the team. Hopefully I can keep playing, keep doing well and the injuries are behind me now.”

Right-footed Williams has been used on both the right and left as well as as a wing-back in a 3-4-3 or a full-back in a back four. He said: “I think it’s good to be versatile. It’s good that the gaffer knows I can play a few different positions so it’s better for me. Hopefully I keep playing.”

On Wednesday’s loss to Swansea, Williams said: “It was definitely disappointing. We were very strong until they scored. We were hard to beat and hard to play down the sides.

“We got a bit more expansive as the game went on and they opened us up.

“It’s hard to take at the minute but I feel we were a lot harder to beat than in recent weeks. We can take the positives and move forward into Saturday and be better on the counter-attacks and our shape on the ball.”