Barnsley Must Stop The Rot At The Back
Question. What do Aston Villa, Barnsley, Notts County and Cheltenham Town have in common?
Answer. They are all the highest ranked team in their respective division with a negative goal difference.
Question. What does it mean?
Answer. It means that we are all having a good season, all four of us in the top halves of our respective divisions. But when we get beat, boy do we get beat!
A slim win over Everton and a 3-0 defeat of West Ham have sent Aston Villa to fourth in the Premier League, but a surprising 6-0 reverse at Newcastle means they have the only negative goal difference in the top 11 Premiership teams.
Barnsley were embarrassed on opening day at Loftus Road as QPR ran riot with a 4-0 win, but have since turned out a three game unbeaten run, grinding out a 1-0 win over Crystal Palace and a 2-0 win over Middlesbrough, whilst being unlucky to take only a point from Bristol City. With clean sheets in both home games, it's clear what needs sorting. The 7 goals shipped over two away games need cutting out.
Notts County have already suffered two 3-0 defeats at the hands of Oldham and Huddersfield in League One and have the joint second leakiest defence in the league with 9 goals conceded.
Finally Cheltenham, although they haven't lost by anything higher than a two goal margin this season, are still League Two's highest conceders with thirteen goals leaked in five games, albeit six of those were at Rotherham in the 6-4 thriller.
So we can win games, even if it is by the narrowest of margins, but we need to stop capitulating when we do lose. Goal difference as they say can count as an extra point come the end of the season, which Wolves found out in their 07/08 hunt for the Championship Play-Offs.