Opposition insight: How four former Leeds United players have fared this season with tomorrow's hosts Barnsley

Mallik Wilks has been ever-present for Barnsley this season (Pic: Getty)
Mallik Wilks has been ever-present for Barnsley this season (Pic: Getty)
0
Have your say

Leeds United could come up against a quartet of their former players tomorrow at Oakwell.

Daniel Stendel's Barnsley squad contains four ex Whites, namely Alex Mowatt, Mallik Wilks, Aapo Halme and Clarke Oduor

According to Barnsley Chronicle writer Doug O'Kane, the quartet have been part of a Tykes side that has struggled to cope with the demands of the Championship so far this season

"The Reds’ post-promotion momentum was slowed down by the departures of last season's heroes Adam Davies, Liam Lindsay, Ethan Pinnock and Kieffer Moore as the club continued the tradition of selling their best players," he siad.

"They brought in 11 new players, only one of whom was older than 22.

"They won against Fulham in the opening game and were slightly the better side in draws with Charlton and Wigan, when eight of the first 11 were injured, but they were well-beaten in the four other matches.

"Stendel is having to bring young and untested players up to speed in a very demanding league which takes no prisoners while dealing with an injury crisis and gelling together a much-changed squad. "

The Reds see tomorrow's clash with Leeds as the perfect chance to kickstart their season.

A two-week break from action thanks to international football has allowed a number of players to recover from knocks and return to contention.

One of those is ex Thorp Arch academy player Mowatt, who made 125 first team appearances for Leeds before his move to Oakwell.

He was a star last season in League One but is yet to shine to the same degree in the Championship.

"Alex Mowatt was outstanding last season," said O'Kane.

"He didn’t miss a minute and bossed the majority of games from central midfield while scoring some sensational goals.

"He’s struggled slightly to get up to that same level so far this season."

Mowatt's fellow former Whites in the Oakwell dressing room have had mixed fortunes.

Wilks has been an ever present, but not entirely consistent, while Halme had a nightmare start and Oduor has had to be patient.

"Mallik Wilks has played in every league game, starting all but one, and scored in the home loss to Luton Town," said O'Kane.

"He has looked good in patches but it hasn’t helped him that he has been moved around from the left wing to up front then back again due to injuries to other players.

"Halme had a very difficult debut in the 3-0 EFL Cup loss at home to League Two Carlisle as he lost the ball for the first goal and conceded a penalty for the second. But he has looked much more solid in the league games he has played since.

"Oduor hasn’t made his debut yet but was on the bench in the last game at Wigan and may have an outside chance of playing as his fellow left-back Ben Williams is suspended."

Likely line-up: Collins; J Williams, Sibbick, Andersen, Cavare; Thomas, Mowatt, Bahre, Wilks; Chaplin; Woodrow.