Barnsley have completed the signing of forward Andrew Dallas from National League side Solihull Moors, but what could the Scotsman bring to Oakwell next season?
The 24-year-old has completed a move to Barnsley, after a long-stretching transfer saga in which the forward was linked to Sheffield Wednesday and Chesterfield whilst also being offered a new deal by Solihull Moors, allowing them to receive a compensation fee.
The Scottish forward burst onto the scene with Rangers at youth level, featuring predominantly for their U20s and their ‘B’ team, before joining Cambridge United in July 2019.
With the League One side, Dallas made 33 appearances but struggled to find consistency in the final third, something you would expect from a young forward. He had a loan spell with Non-League side Weymouth before being released in 2021.
Upon his release, Dallas signed for Solihull Moors in the National League, where he found his goalscoring form once again. In his debut season, Dallas scored 20 goals in 47 appearances, developing a strong partnership with Joe Sbarra and helping the club to reach the National League play-off final, where they were beaten by Grimsby Town.
However, despite scoring 13 goals during the first half of the season, Dallas opted to leave Solihull Moors in favour of strengthening his chances of moving into the EFL. He joined Chesterfield on loan, scoring seven goals but the club were beaten on penalties in the play-off final.
Following his move to Barnsley, what can the League One side expect?
This sounds self-explanatory but Andy Dallas has proven over the last two seasons that he can comfortably find the back of the net either alone or with great service from his teammates.
Dallas has scored 41 goals in the last two seasons, with both campaigns hitting 20 or more. Although the standard of football in League One will be considerably higher than the National League, the 24-year-old knows where the back of the net is and if he’s given the chance to shine at Oakwell, he will get goals.
Hunger and desire to succeed
As stated above, the quality between the two leagues is very noticeable, which will make Dallas eager to succeed at Oakwell. Barnsley have also signed Woking defender Kacper Lopata this summer, proving that they have been keeping a very close eye on the National League.
Dallas made it clear in March 2023 that he wanted to move into the EFL this summer, showing clubs that he already had a focused mind on wanting to make his mark in the football league.
The Scotsman is best known for being a striker, as was the case with both Rangers, Cambridge and the majority of his loan spell with Chesterfield. However, with Solihull, Dallas operated more as a left-winger, which continues to add options for the League One side next season.
Although Barnsley aren’t known for using wingers, they have a new manager at the helm, following Michael Duff’s switch to Swansea City which could open up the option to change tactics. This would open the door for players like Dallas to offer fresh alternatives next season, which could allow him to shine.
Admittedly, Dallas has only made 33 appearances in the EFL, but it does take away the risk factor involved with this deal, as he will have a basic understanding of the physical demands that the football league requires.
He’s also played almost every game over the last two season’s, making him a lot fitter and hungrier to keep that record going. He’s joining a Barnsley side who are full of star players like Callum Styles and Luca Connell, which will only allow Dallas to improve even more next season.
I personally think Andrew Dallas will flourish at Oakwell next season, especially given how much quality is currently within the Barnsley side.
Dallas may not be the first name on the team sheet, but if he’s given a chance to shine for the club, he will score goals and will prove that he has what it takes to succeed in the EFL.