Barnsley cleared off the line three times as they drew 0-0 at home to Valerien Ismael's high-flying West Bromwich Albion on Friday night.

The visitors had the better chances throughout but the Reds rode their luck and defended well, while they had just one shot on target as they barely attacked.

Second-bottom Barnsley cut the gap to safety by a point to seven but all those just above them have a game in hand.

They have 14 points which is their lowest total at halfway in a season since the Premier League season of 1997/98 which was 38 games.

Poya Asbaghi – who is winless in five games but has drawn three – made three changes from the side that lost at Preston six days earlier.

Jordan Williams, Josh Benson and Aaron Leya Iseka came in for the injured Cauley Woodrow, ill Romal Palmer and benched Clarke Oduor. Mads Andersen took over as captain from Woodrow.

The Reds used a 3-4-1-2 formation with Callum Styles playing behind Carlton Morris and Aaron Leya Iseka, while Callum Brittain was left wing-back with Jordan Williams on the right.

West Brom were boosted by the return of four players who missed the previous game with Covid-19. They should have taken the lead in the third minute when Cedric Kipre was left totally unmarked to head against the post from a right-wing free-kick by former Barnsley captain Alex Mowatt.

Barnsley grew into the game, playing decent football when they could attack, and defending resiliently, but West Brom looked the more dangerous side.

The visitors wasted another big chance in the 28th minute when, after a fine move down the left involving Karlan Grant and Connor Townsend, Jordan Hugill looked certain to score seven yards out but shot straight at Callum Brittain who blocked on the line.

Josh Benson then had Barnsley's first shot on target as his 30-yard free-kick was tipped over by England goalkeeper Sam Johnstone.

There was another clearance off the Reds line in the 40th minute when a left-wing corner from the left hit Matt Clarke and looped towards goal with Callum Robinson set to head in from inches out but Morris brilliantly cleared with an overhead kick.

Early in the second half, Kipre shot just wide of the bottom right corner from 15 yards after a scramble from a long throw.

Grant then burst into the home box on the left and passed to Robinson whose ten-yard effort was pushed wide by Brad Collins.

Grant looked sure to score when he was put clean through, rounded Collins and shot but it was brilliantly blocked on the line by Michal Helik.

Darnell Furlong was also played clean through in the box in the 86th minute but hesitated and Andersen made a fine block. Matt Clarke then headed wide from a difficult chance after meeting a left-wing cross.

Barnsley (3-4-1-2): Collins; Helik, Andersen, Kitching; Brittain, Gomes, Benson (Cole 64mins), Styles, J Williams; Morris, Iseka (Oduor 85).

Unused: Walton, Moon, Hondermarck, Vita, Adeboyejo.

West Brom (3-4-3): Johnstone; Kipre, Bartley, Clarke; Furlong, Mowatt, Livermore (Molumby 72mins), Townsend; Grant, Hugill (Reach 90+3), Robinson (Diangana 72).

Unused: Button, Ajayi,, Gardner-Hickman, Fellows.

Yellow cards: Livermore.


  • 7:49pm

    Looks like 3-4-3 with Callum Styles on the right of the front three. Callum Brittain left wing back and Jordan Williams right wing back
  • 7:50pm

    3 Massive chance for the visitors. Alex Mowatt's free-kick is headed onto the post by Cedric Kipre
  • 7:54pm

    6 Good couple of minutes for the Reds. with a few good attacks. Callum Brittain shoots over from 25 yards
  • 7:58pm

    West Brom are pushing up the pitch and Barnsley doing a lot of defending, but it was they expected
  • 7:58pm

    West Brom are pushing up the pitch and Barnsley doing a lot of defending, but it was they expected
  • 8:04pm

    This start will please the Reds. There hasn't been much action since the opening minutes but they have played some good football but looked pretty solid at the back
  • 8:05pm

    Callum Styles is playing just behind the two strikers. That role should suit him with his shooting, passing ability and skill
  • 8:08pm

    21 WBA corner on the left. They play it short and try to work it into the box but Helik scrambles away
  • 8:09pm

    22 Darnell Furlong slices a shot well wide from the edge of the box. The referee gives a corner but there did not seem to be a deflection
  • 8:09pm

    22 The left wing corner is headed clear by Helik
  • 8:13pm

    The visitors have had most of the ball, hitting the post early on. But Barnsley have played some decent stuff when at times they have had possession. Since a sloppy start, they have defended well. 0
  • 8:16pm

    28 Another huge chance for the visitors. The ball falls for Hugill after a fine move down the left but his eight yards shot with the goal gaping is saved off the line by Brittain
  • 8:17pm

    Great defending by Brittain but a huge miss for the visitors. Hugill could have shot into either corner
  • 8:18pm

    31 Barnsley have their first shot on target. Josh Benson's 30-yard free-kick is tipped over by Johnstone
  • 8:20pm

    33 Mowatt corner on the right punched back to him by Collins but again cleared then he has a third attempt to cross from deep but puts it out for a goal kick
  • 8:22pm

    35 Mowatt's left wing free-kick is headed clear by Gomes
  • 8:25pm

    Heading into the final five minutes of this half, Barnsley will be pretty happy with 0-0 at the break. They have held their own for the most part but the visitors have missed two gilt-edged chances
  • 8:26pm

    39 Darnell Furlong's long throw is headed out. He annoyed the home fans by taking time to wipe the ball with a cloth
  • 8:27pm

    40 WBA corner on the left. Overhead kick off the line by Morris.
  • 8:29pm

    The left wing corner hits Matt Clarke and loops towards the line but Carlton Morris overhead kicks it away before Robinson can head in inches out
  • 8:33pm

    HALF-TIME: Barnsley 0, West Brom 0. The visitors have missed some big chances but Barnsley have hung in there and, when they have had the ball, have played some decent football
  • 8:50pm

  • 8:52pm

    West Brom still on top with lots of the ball but no threatening attacks so far
  • 8:54pm

    50 Long throw for West Brom on the right. There's a scramble then it drops to Kipre who has one shot blocked and another goes just wide of the bottom right corner from just inside the box
  • 8:57pm

    Jake Livermore is the first name in the book for a trip about 35 yards from the visitors' goal
  • 8:59pm

    53 Morris robs Kipre of the ball on the left of the box but cannot get a cross in
  • 8:59pm

    55 Barnsley having a decent spell now. They win a corner on the left
  • 9:00pm

    56 Benson's left-wing corner is headed away, as is his follow up cross
  • 9:01pm

    57 West Brom free-kick on the right.
  • 9:02pm

    57 A right wing free kick by Furlong is blasted high and wide
  • 9:04pm

    59 West Brom corner on the left. Furlong takes. Collins claws it away on his line and Benson clears
  • 9:05pm

    West Brom having a strong spell, pinning back their hosts who are defending manfully
  • 9:08pm

    Devante Cole is coming on for Josh Benson. Styles back into the middle
  • 9:10pm

    66 West Brom corner on the left. It is cleared
  • 9:12pm

    67 Best chance of the second half, it falls to the visitors. Karlan Grant is in on the left of the box, he passes low to Robinson whose ten yards shot is pushed wide by Collins .Mowatt's follow up corner is headed over by Bartley
  • 9:15pm

    71 Styles corner from the right is headed over then Williams shoots well over
  • 9:16pm

    West Brom bring on Jayson Molumby for Jake Livermore
  • 9:16pm

    And Grady Diangana for Callum Robinson
  • 9:18pm

    Third clearance of the line tonight by Barnsley. This time by Helik with superb work after Diangana rounded Collins and shot from inside the box. 0-0
  • 9:21pm

    Barnsley have shown great heart tonight, with three clearances off the line and some other fine defensive work. The visitors will think they should have had several goals but their hosts have battled very hard
  • 9:24pm

    Into the last ten minutes now, can the Reds hold on against the third-placed side or even nick a vital win?
  • 9:27pm

    West Brom aren't exactly knocking at the door here. They have had chances but the game is in danger of petering out
  • 9:28pm

    Clarke Oduor replaces Aaron Leya Iseka
  • 9:31pm

    86 Big chance for the visitors. Darnell Furlong is played in on the right of the box but hesitates and Andersen blocks
  • 9:35pm

    Four added minutes
  • 9:37pm

    Adam Reach replaces Jordan Hugill
  • 9:40pm

    One more free-kick for the visitors.
  • 9:40pm

    90+6 Mowatt's free-kick is headed over then Bartley volleys over from 20 yards
  • 9:42pm

    90+7 WBA corner on the left. The goalkeeper was up but it is cleared then the whistle goes
  • 9:42pm

    FULL-TIME: Barnsley 0, West Brom 0.