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Thursday, 19 January 2012

HillCroft's Hit Factory

© On The Ponty End 2012
In reference to the likely transfer of Danny Drinkwater to Leicester City today,  one disgruntled Twitter user put it thus, "We're the small kid in playground having his dinner money pinched". And perhaps they've got a point, specifically in reference to the Foxes ability to flex their financial muscle over Barnsley FC off the field, despite being unable to overcome us during 180 minutes of Championship Football.

But also, perhaps we should also muse over the fantastic position that the partnership in which Keith Hill and David Flitcroft have now placed our beloved Barnsley FC. As one pop combo once put it, "It aint what you do, it's they way that you do it and that's what gets results".

It's no mere coincidence that Drinkwater has flourished at the Reds this term, alongside the likes of Jim O'Brien, David Perkins, Ricardo Vaz Te, Craig Davies and Jimmy McNulty. As a fellow blogger described earlier in the season, HillCroft have a knack for fixing broken toys and have blended talent together at Oakwell, to make us the envy of many a Championship side.

Whether any of these players will have better careers or fortunes beyond Barnsley, only time will tell. But Keith Hill is a realist, who in his recent interview with Radio Sheffield admits, "It's a short career and as we've seen with Jacob Butterfield, you're one game away from your whole career imploding in", making advancement, with increased financial incentives a real problem for Barnsley FC in retaining talent.

What does this mean for Bansley FC?

My belief is that this can only be regarded as positive evidence to all supporters. The club is being steered in the right direction. The management team is being taken very seriously, inside and outside of our club and that the confidence being built will only open yet further opportunities, to attract new talent, who may have in the past been off the radar!

Maybe Premier League clubs will encourage players to find their way to Grove Street, as an essential part of their development and nurture. Trusting that the correct habits, mindset and performance levels are achieved to a desired standard, on a consistent basis. Even if that means that the wealthier clubs use Oakwell as a sieve to sort out their own wheat from the chaff.

Keith Hill is on record as stating "We've done our job in respect to helping Danny [Drinkwater] and Danny's done his job in respect to helping us as well".

Let's hope Manchester United recognise this also, besides the beneficiaries of this work - if indeed, as is extremely likely, the Old Trafford loan hero departs and joins the Foxes today, Thursday 19 January.

In HillCroft we trust. This will change the game plan temporarily at Barnsley FC, but I doubt this will undermine the success that this management duo have and will achieve at our beloved club.

Is this a fatal blow for Barnsley FC's season? We would love to hear your opinions, add your comments below. Follow us on Twitter @OnThePontyEnd or join the banter on Facebook.

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