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The boss on Tykes task

Rowett speaks...

26 June 2020

Gary Rowett wants his Millwall side to match Barnsley's "desire and desperation" to get a result at Oakwell on Saturday afternoon.

The Lions play their first away game of the 2019/20 Sky Bet Championship resumption - and one of only two outside of London - against The Tykes (kick-off 1pm), sitting just three points away from the top six.

They do, however, face a side fighting for their lives at the other end of the table, coming off the back of a 1-0 win at Queens Park Rangers last weekend.

The trip gives Millwall a chance to redeem themselves for last Saturday's 3-2 reverse at home to Derby County - a game Rowett reviewed when speaking to millwallfc.co.uk.

"There was a real disappointment in the way we defended against Derby," he said. "Our defence has been solid, and that's been a hallmark of our performances, so that's something we want to do better.

"There's a difference in the games - it will help the more techincal player as things are a bit slower. There's slightly less tempo and intensity to the games, and the crowd are not there to help you through it. We're going to have to navigate things a bit better than we did at the weekend."

Four points from safety with eight games remaining, Barnsley's Championship status hangs in the balance, but Rowett was full of praise for The Tykes.

"The games we've watched, they're very competitive, young and athletic. Certainly against QPR, while they weren't the best in their energy levels, Barnsley were a handful. They're playing like they're desperate to get out of there, and we have to match them. We have to match their desire and desperation to get a result.

"They've got a front three that cause you problems, we saw that at home earlier on in the season. Like any team, I don't think you can take form into account right now. It's all about who navigates this period the best and the quickest - certainly in their first game, Barnsley were very good."

Alex Pearce missed last weekend's meeting with Derby, while Shaun Hutchinson sustained an injury following a tackle. The boss, however, will be able to call upon the services of Mason Bennett once again.

"[Hutchinson and Pearce] haven't trained yet so look increasingly likely to miss out. Mason coming back will be a very big plus for us, though - we need someone with his movement, pace and power to break the lines. We saw in some of the games before the break that he is a threat, whether that is with starting strong or leaving something back for later in the game."

Click play on the video above for the full interview with Gary Rowett, in which he discusses the possibility of utilising youngsters Billy Mitchell, Hayden Muller and Tyler Burey.


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