Boss Freedman hails his side's energy levels in Barnsley triumph
DOUGIE Freedman praised his players for digging deep to make it three in a row at Barnsley.
Wanderers secured their third consecutive win after braving a second-half comeback from the scrappy Tykes to maintain their late dash for a play-off place.
David Ngog and Jay Spearing had given the Whites a comfortable 2-0 lead before Tomasz Cywka and Chris O’Grady pulled David Flitcroft’s men level within eight minutes of the restart.
Craig Dawson then proved the match-winner, capping an excellent defensive performance with a fine finish to restore the lead.
That means just seven points separate Brighton in sixth and Wanderers in 10th, although Gus Poyet’s side do have a game in hand.
But with both Blackburn and Brighton due to visit the Reebok in the next six days, Freedman knows there will be no let-up.
“The fans are right behind us and they know it’s edgy; football is,” he said. “They know it’s tight between the top and the bottom.
“We dug deep and found energy resources that I didn’t think were there.
“If you are going to maintain any interest in this season, that’s what we have got to do.
“That’s what the club have got right now. There is a fantastic togetherness.”
Saturday’s win was especially pleasing for Freedman given that the club had been rocked by the news that Mark Davies would be out for at least eight months with cruciate ligament damage.
Chris Eagles impressed in his absence, setting up the first goal for Ngog.
And Freedman feels the confidence returning to his side, which could well be a big factor in the last 11 games of the season.
“We’re keeping the season interesting and that’s the main thing,” he said.
“I’ve always thought we were good enough but we’ve had a lot of unfortunate issues on and off the field. We have a good group of players who are working hard to do the right things.
“It’s not always going to go our way but I feel in the last couple of games that the belief is coming back and we can dig deep and help our team-mates out.
“We were dead unfortunate losing Mark Davies in midweek and that’s a big, big blow for us. Some clubs maybe couldn’t handle losing their best players but we’ve had lads step up and take responsibility.”