‘Studying rather than drinking’.
That’s what Barnsley manager Keith Hill says he will be doing tonight, while thousands of Barnsley supporters see in the new year basking in the glory of a 4-1 thumping of Leeds United.
Hill has already turned his thoughts to Monday’s local derby clash at Doncaster Rovers, knowing he will be without his skipper Jacob Butterfield, who is set for a three-week spell on the sidelines after sustaining knee ligament damage in the magnificent victory over the men from Elland Road.
Hill said: “It may be New Year’s Eve but I will be studying rather than drinking.
“I’ve got Monday’s match to plan for now – and I have lost two more players. I will be without Jacob Butterfield and Miles Addison, who goes back to Derby.
“We will have to have a head count, to see who we have available!
“It is tough playing two matches in three days, and we put a lot of effort into the performance against Leeds.
“The game panned out just as we had planned it to. We had worked hard on our defensive approach and I thought that all over the pitch we worked extremely hard. Our defensive responsibility was excellent.
“When the players put in nines and 10s in terms of performance then I know we are capable of doing well against any team in this division. But when we are slightly off, and giving sixes and sevens out of 10, then we can find ourselves in trouble.
“We have to give nines and 10s every week.
“We certainly got that against Leeds, and it was a very special win. One that the supporters will have loved.
“We lost Jacob Butterfield early on but for every blow an opportunity presents itself. The opportunity fell to Ricardo Vaz Te and he took it.
“I think he was disappointed at not starting but I’m glad he responded in the manner that he did, because I think he was getting a bit lazy.
“He needs to remind himself of his responsibility to the team. It is not just about scoring goals. He has to play his part in the team pattern. He came on and did that, and the goals followed for him. I was happy for him.
“Miles Addison also had a terrific game. He has been in and out of the team and he now has a decision to make as he goes back to Derby. He wants to play more games but I can’t guarantee any player a start.
“As for Jacob, he tweaked his knee ligaments and looks set to be out for three weeks. It was an old pro’s challenge from Michael Brown, but I believe it is a challenge that belongs in the past.
“He’s an excellent player, a clever player, but he’s done a job on Jacob.
“The players have done very well this season and it is all about maintaining that focus and energy. The first priority for us is to get to 50 points. We can’t take our eyes off that.”