Sunderland's automatic promotion hopes back in their own hands after Barnsley's draw at Doncaster
Sunderland's automatic promotion hopes are back in their own hands following Barnsley's goalless draw at Doncaster on Friday night.
A point for the Tykes moves them five points clear of Sunderland in the League One table, yet the Black Cats have two games in hand on Daniel Stendel's side.
Jack Ross' men will have the chance to close the gap when they host relegation-threatened Walsall at the Stadium of Light on Saturday afternoon (3pm kick-off).
Despite dominating possession in the second half, it could have been worse for Barnsley after goalkeeper Adam Davies made an impressive save to deny Kieran Sadlier late on.
Barnsley were still without winger Jacob Brown and midfielder Cameron McGeehan who were serving the final matches of the three-game suspensions.
The Tykes also lost defensive midfielder Kenny Dougall to injury in the first half, with Zeki Fryers taking his place on 18 minutes.
The result marked a sixth successive clean sheet for Barnsley in League One, yet they now need Sunderland or Luton to drop points to secure a top-two spot.
After the Walsall game Sunderland won't play another league fixture until April 3, due to international call-ups and the Checkatrade Trophy final.
In that time Barnsley will make the trip to Walsall next weekend before hosting Coventry at the end of March.