Olivier Ntcham’s Swansea leveller hurts Barnsley survival hopes

The Tykes are 10 points adrift of safety in the Sky Bet Championship.

By Press Association Published: 15 April 2022 - 9.46pm

Barnsley conceded a costly Olivier Ntcham equaliser as they lost ground in the fight for Sky Bet Championship survival with a 1-1 draw at Swansea.

Claudio Gomes fired Barnsley into the lead in the 54th minute, but Ntcham’s leveller 10 minutes later left the Tykes 10 points from safety, with relegation rivals Reading, Peterborough and Derby all winning on Friday.

Swansea dominated the final stages in south Wales and pushed hard for a winner, but they ultimately missed a chance to boost their slim play-off hopes.

The draw leaves Russell Martin’s side 14th, seven points off the top six with five games to play.

Swansea looked dangerous on the counterattack, with Jamie Paterson curling in a wicked cross which connected with Joel Piroe only for it to be saved by Jack Walton. Barnsley’s Matthew Wolfe was then shown a yellow card for a bad foul.

The hosts wasted a glorious chance to go ahead when Paterson could not make the most of a three-on-one. Michael Obafemi played it to Paterson, who cut back on his right foot but saw his effort blocked by Mads Andersen.

Barnsley’s best opportunity of the first half came when Liam Kitching was found unmarked but headed wide. The game was goalless at the interval and Barnsley had Walton to thank for that, with his acrobatic save keeping out Matt Grimes’ powerful shot.

Swansea began the second half on the front foot, with Ben Cabango’s left-footed shot from the edge of the penalty area going just wide.

Barnsley opened the scoring as they broke away on the counterattack, catching Swansea out with their pace. Amine Bassi played Gomes through on goal, with the striker drilling it through Andy Fisher’s legs in the 54th minute.

But Swansea refused to throw in the towel and went on the attack, with Cyrus Chirstie’s pass in the 64th minute allowing Ntcham to rifle the ball into the top corner.

Barnsley attempted to seize the initiative back from the Welsh club, but Wolfe missed an open goal when he fired wide. Callum Brittain also failed to make the most of a good opportunity when his right-footed shot from the centre of the box missed to the right.

This game was now being played at a frantic pace, and Barnsley’s Carlton Morris was shown a yellow card for a late tackle. As the game approached the final 10 minutes, Swansea laid siege to their visitors’ box.

The closest Swansea came was when Obafemi, who was played in by Hannes Wolf, had his left-footed shot blocked by Barnsley captain Andersen.

The visitors had one final chance to claim a winner, but Cauley Woodrow could not get his shot on target.

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