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Barnsley: Townsend tips Morais to inspire Reds survival fight

Nick Townsend
Nick Townsend

Goalkeeper Nick Townsend believes new manager Jose Morais will help Barnsley stay up.

Morais was Jose Mourinho’s right-hand man at Inter Milan, Real Madrid and Chelsea.

But his first game in charge of the Reds ended in defeat against Burton in midweek - extending their miserable record to just one win in their last 18 games and leaving them 23rd in the Championship.

Townsend returns to boyhood club Birmingham City today looking to start a run to safety.

He said: “There have been a lot of changes around the club. It’s been a weird few weeks.

“The lads know what position we’re in now and we’ve got to get ourselves out of it to stay up.

“I think we can stay up. We’ve got a new manager in and he has new ideas about how he wants us to play.

“We need to knuckle down. Birmingham is a big game for us and we’ve got to win it.

“We just need to show some belief that we can get out of the relegation zone.”

Townsend grew up in Solihull and had a Blues season ticket as a kid.

He progressed through the ranks at St Andrews, but failed to make a first-team appearance.

Townsend’s family and friends will be in the opposite camp today and he said: “I grew up as a Blue, but you play for the badge on your shirt.

“Friends and family have given me a bit of stick, but it’s the job. If we win, I think I’ll get a few digs for it, but we need the three points.”