Reds chief refuses to dismiss O’Driscoll link

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The hunt for a new manager is continuing apace inside Oakwell, but Barnsley chief executive Ben Mansford was non-committal when asked about bookies’ favourite for the job, Sean O’Driscoll.

Former Doncaster, Bournemouth and Bristol City boss O’Driscoll, aged 57, was strongly linked with the Reds vacancy 14 months ago when Danny Wilson was appointed for a second time.

Wilson was relieved of his duties last Thursday following a largely miserable spell in charge and speculation has hinted that O’Driscoll was on Barnsley’s ‘wanted’ list, but Mansford said: “I’ve heard the speculation, but as far I know Sean has a very good job with the FA now.

“We are looking at people who are both in and out of work at present, but it is so incredibly important that we get this appointment right this time.

“In the meantime Mark Burton and Paul Heckingbottom will continue to look after the team, but our fans can rest assured that we are all working extremely hard to get that person in who will bring the club the success they deserve.”

Yesterday, current Plymouth boss and Owls legend John Sheridan distanced himself from the Oakwell vacancy, while Uwe Rosler, Gary Johnson and Craig Hignett continued to be rated as contenders.

Whoever takes over from Wilson faces a mammoth task in lifting spirits at Barnsley, particularly given Saturday’s embarrassing 5-1 thumping at relegation favourites Crawley.

Club chiefs have decided to reimburse the Reds’ travelling faithful for their match tickets, who numbered over 400 in Sussex and each paid between £18 and £24.

Mansford added: “The board felt that to reimburse the loyal fans that travelled all that way was absolutely the right thing to do. The team’s performance was just not acceptable on the day. The fans just didn’t deserve it, and that’s why we’ve decided to take this course of action.”

Details of how Reds’ fans can claim back their Crawley ticket money can be found on the club website.