BARNSLEY will look to end their recent slight wobble at Oakwell when they host relegation-battling Cambridge United from 3pm today.

The Reds have the tenth best home record in the division and conceded the third most goals on their own soil.

They have not won in three at Oakwell – conceding a late leveller to Bolton, losing 5-1 to Lincoln and drawing 0-0 with lowly Cheltenham. The last time they went winless in four at Oakwell in League One was under Lee Johnson in 2015.

Head coach Neill Collins told the Chronicle: “I will be really pleased to finish that little run. We should have done it against Cheltenham. You lose a goal in the last minute to Bolton, don’t quite manage to beat Cheltenham then suddenly you haven’t won in three.

“But I will be happy to put that to an end against Cambridge.”

Cambridge, who have taken one point from their last seven games, are 20th, three points and one place clear of the relegation zone. They have the second worst away record in the division with 13 points from 19 games and have lost their last four away games without scoring.

Their squad is one of the oldest and most experienced in the division.

Collins said: “At this time of year experience comes in most handy. Ryan Bennett and Michael Morrison know what it takes in these games which gives us a challenge. Lyle Taylor knows the way to goal and they have some good younger players with energy as well.

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“At this time of year in some respects it’s harder playing the teams in that part of the table than mid-table teams. These professionals do focus their minds and know they have to make it happen now.

“The next two games will be exceptionally tough and I don’t mind how we get the points as long as we get them.”

Cambridge are on their third manager of the season – former Barnsley defender Garry Monk. They sacked Mark Bonner – who had taken them out of League Two in 2021 – in November after a run of one win in 13 league games.

Neil Harris came in for four months, winning five of 13 games, before returning to former club Millwall in February. A caretaker coaching team including ex-Red Kevin Betsy lost three out of three before Monk was brought in at the beginning of this month.

He kept former Oakwell team-mate Betsy on his coaching staff with both set to be in the away dugout today.

Monk started with a 1-1 draw at home to Northampton Town, the only goal Cambridge have scored in the last six games, but then suffered a 6-0 loss at Lincoln and a 4-0 beating at Reading.

Like Barnsley, they have not played in 13 days since March 16.

Monk, who played 21 games for the Reds in the 2003/04 season, has not won in three games at Oakwell as a manager with three different clubs. He lost 3-2 with Leeds in January 2017, drew 2-2 with Middlesbrough later that year then drew 1-1 with Sheffield Wednesday in 2020. Collins said: “Garry is an experienced manager. He had only had two weeks with the team but the time period between games gives him a chance to implement his style.

“They have a group of professionals who will be desperate to put it right.

“Easter weekend adds a little extra because a lot can happen in a short space of time. The expectation is we should come out on top but it’s never that easy especially at this stage of the season.

“We’re all guilty of looking at final scorelines. 4-0 after 6-0 doesn’t scream ‘in form’. But at 2–0 against Reading, Cambridge had three gilt-edged chances and were definitely in the ascendancy. Reading scored a couple of wonderstikes to make it look more pretty.”

Paul Digby, the Oakwell academy graduate, has been a regular in Cambridge’s midfield this season.

Reds midfielder Adam Phillips made his professional debut for the Us during a four-game loan spell from Norwich City in 2018. Defender Robbie Cundy played 23 games on loan to Cambridge from Bristol City in the 2020/21 season.

Barnsley have won 12 of their 24 meetings with Cambridge, losing five.

They have won the last five meetings, not conceding in the most recent four.

Last season, the Reds won 2-0 in this fixture with goals by Max Watters – who was sent off before half-time – then Jordan Williams. Barnsley won 4-0 at Cambridge in October with goals by Nicky Cadden, Mael de Gevigney, Watters and Jon Russell.

Cambridge have won one of 11 games at Oakwell, losing seven. Since their only win there – a 3-2 success in 1983 – they have not scored in four visits, with three 2-0 defeats and a 0-0 draw in 1992.