Barnsley 0 Fleetwood 1: Fifth defeat on trots for Reds

Fleetwood's Jamie Proctor slides the ball pastr Barnsley keeper Nick Townsend to open the scoring. 'Picture Dean Atkins
Fleetwood's Jamie Proctor slides the ball pastr Barnsley keeper Nick Townsend to open the scoring. 'Picture Dean Atkins

Barnsley slumped to their fifth straight defeat when hosting Fleetwood, and dropped into the Sky Bet League One drop zone in the process.

Jamie Proctor’s first-half goal condemned the shot-shy Reds to another worrying reverse, one that heaps the pressure on manager Lee Johnson.

The chorus of boos at the final whistle tell their own story.

It was an awful first-half performance from Barnsley and they deservedly went in a goal behind at the interval.

Proctor handed the Cod Army the lead in the 29th minute, easily robbing Paul Digby in the midfield before charging through and slotting comfortably past Nick Townsend.

The visitors had gone close after just FIVE seconds when David Ball forced Townsend into a smart save at his near post.

The Reds pressed for an equaliser late in the opening period, with skipper Alfie Mawson heading over a curling free-kick from George Smith.

Seconds before the break Mawson smashed in a superb free-kick from 25 yards that Fleetwood ‘keeper Chris Maxwell palmed away well.

Johnson brought both Michael Smith and Lewin Nyatanga on at half-time, but prospects improved little in the opening 10 minutes of the second period.

Townsend was called upon to produce a brilliant diving save to keep out a curling strike from Bobby Grant.

After Michael Smith had seen a header easily saved by Maxwell, Townsend was forced into another terrific stop at the other end when he got down low to keep out Antoni Sarcevic’s effort from close range.

Kadeem Harris saw a powerful shot deflected wide late on, but the Reds were also saved from a heavier defeat by the woodwork when Ashley Hunter’s cross struck the outside of a post.

Barnsley (4-4-1-1): Townsend; Wabara, Roberts, Mawson, G Smith; Scowen, Digby, Crowley, Isgrove; Harris; Winnall.

Subs: Walton, Bree, Jackson, Maris, M Smith, Wilkinson, Nyatanga.

Fleetwood (4-3-3): Maxwell; McLaughlin, Wood, Teixeira, Bell; Sarcevic, Ryan, Jonsson; Grant, Proctor, Ball. Subs: Jordan, Matt, Hunter, Haughton, Sowerby, Davis, Gogic.

Referee: Carl Boyeson (East Yorkshire).