Promotional aspirants When Barnsley visits the Kassam Stadium on Saturday to take on Oxford United, they will be aiming to win their fifth straight League One game.
In their most recent game, Karl Robinson’s team drew with Accrington Stanley, while the guests defeated Peterborough United .
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Oxford United vs Barnsley Betting odds
Oxford United vs Barnsley Tips and Prediction
The less said about Oxford United’s season-opening performance, the better, but longtime head coach Karl Robinson has changed his team’s fortunes recently, and the U’s have gone nine games without a loss across all competitions.
This tenacious run includes a stretch of seven League One games without a loss, though they have only won two of them and drawn the other five. They also failed to turn one point against Accrington Stanley last weekend into all three.
James Henry gave Oxford the lead after 58 minutes, but Ethan Hamilton’s 40-yard screamer saved a point for Accrington Stanley in the 84th, keeping Robinson’s team from moving up into the top half of the standings as they currently sit in 14th place.
Given how closely contested the League One standings are, only six points separate Oxford from a playoff spot. Despite this, Robinson was left “furious” after his team disregarded his warnings about Hamilton’s left foot prowess.
With just one clean sheet in their last 18 games across all competitions and only one of their last six League One games at the Kassam Stadium ending in victory, Oxford’s defensive performance against Accrington was made even worse by that equalizer.
The Tykes’ push for an immediate return to the Championship is gaining momentum in the midst of a four-game winning streak in the third tier, in contrast to Barnsley, who have recently had little trouble crossing the finish line.
Following victories over Forest Green Rovers, Shrewsbury Town, and MK Dons in quick succession, Barnsley traveled to face fellow playoff contender Peterborough last Friday and came away with a victory, thanks to goals from Luca Connell and Adam Phillips either side of Jack Taylor’s equalizer.
The Tykes, who famously forced their way into the Championship playoffs in 2020–2021, are the best of the rest as they currently occupy the fourth spot in the standings with 33 points. However, the leaders Plymouth Argyle (43), Ipswich Town (42) and Sheffield Wednesday (41) all hold commanding leads over Michael Duff’s team.
The Tykes have now won six of their last seven games across all competitions, and they have only given up two goals in their last seven League One away games.
The match on Saturday will be the first between the two clubs since the 2018-19 League One campaign, when Barnsley won 4-0 at home before being held to a 2-2 draw at the University of Cambridge. This will be Oxford and Barnsley’s fourth competitive meeting since the turn of the millennium.
Oxford United has had no trouble scoring goals, but keeping the opposition at bay is not their strong suit, and a goal-happy Barnsley will take advantage of such frailties.
Even with a few more injury problems to address, we anticipate Duff’s team to return to South Yorkshire with another three victories thanks to the Tykes’ outstanding road defensive record.