For sometime now there has been a player quietly going about his business in League One with his clubs supporters raving about his performances. Not many other people know a lot about this central defender but during the January transfer window, championship clubs were sniffing around such is the growing interest.
Ethan Pinnock`s stock is rising with several man of the match performances in the red of Barnsley. The 25 year old has formed a great partnership with Liam Lindsay in the heart of Daniel Stendel`s side as the club push for an automatic promotion spot. The pair have helped the Tykes keep 16 clean sheets in all competitions.
Pinnock has been an ever present in the Barnsley side resulting in several man of the match performances. Clean sheets away at Luton, Portsmouth and Peterborough have helped the Yorkshire club rise rise up the division.
Pinnock started out at Dulwich Hamlet in the Isthmian league before moving to Forest Green Rovers. One season at Rovers and in July 2017 Barnsley snapped him up.
Having watched Pinnock several times this season it is clear how he has started to alert Championship clubs. He glides across the pitch in an effortless way. He is pacey, reads the game well and can play physically against a typical big man up top, whilst dealing with a quick front man. When a forward gets a couple of yards on him, he is quick over short distances eating up the pitch. Never looking ruffled he reminds me of Rio Ferdinand. Always comfortable bringing the ball out of defence he makes everything look effortless.
At Fleetwood, Pinnock came up against a lively Ched Evans and Ross Wallace but after a tricky start, Pinnock managed the pair well helping Barnsley win 3-1.
There have been several man of the match performances, Doncaster home against a very good quick counter attacking side as well as Burton at home last week.
In November, Doncaster came to Oakwell playing on the counter attack. Many times Pinnock found himself up against three or four Doncaster players countering quickly. By the end of the game Pinnock came away with the man of the match award and Doncaster only took a point in a game they should have won.
In League One, Pinnock comes up against a big centre forward with long balls to deal with. He relishes the physical tussle and is quick enough to deal with the ball over the top against a quick forward.
In January, Pinnock tested himself against premier league opposition in Burnley in the 3rd round of the FA Cup. Despite the step up and coming up against the likes of Sam Vokes and Chris Wood, Pinnock made light work of the threat from Burnley. Vokes got nothing out of Pinnock resulting in him being substituted for Wood.
It isn’t a coincidence that the likes of Brentford were considering bids for Pinnock. Hopefully Pinnock will play next season in the Championship, but with a promoted Barnsley.