Boss Paul Heckingbottom to keep Barnsley focus solely on football

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Barnsley manager Paul Heckingbottom says he is concentrating on managing the team

Barnsley head coach Paul Heckingbottom says he and his players will "stay strong and focused" after the club suspended his assistant Tommy Wright over allegations of corruption.

The Sky Bet Championship club announced on Wednesday night that assistant head coach Wright had been suspended "pending an internal investigation".

The Daily Telegraph claimed to have video footage of Wright accepting a payment it says was offered after he agreed to help a fake agents' firm recruit players for Barnsley.

Heckingbottom, whose side take on Leeds at Elland Road on Saturday, said he was under strict instructions not to talk about the allegations.

"I can't talk about that," Heckingbottom told a press conference at Oakwell on Thursday morning.

Barnsley manager Paul Heckingbottom
Image: Heckingbottom will keep his side focused on beating Leeds

"You've all been briefed. You know [this press conference is] just about football.

"The club and myself will make a statement later because there's still things ongoing."

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When asked when he was made aware of the allegations, Heckingbottom said: "I am just focusing on the football. We can speak about Leeds and things going forward.

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"If not, we can just finish [the press conference] because I'm under instruction just like everyone at the club that we have to do things properly. We have to speak about it at the right time and in the right way.

"Because it's not nice for anyone."

Heckingbottom said he would be speaking with his players about the matter this morning before focusing on Saturday's match.

"My focus this morning, is the players and the team," he said.

"There'll be a time for me to speak about it later on. At this moment in time, everything I'm doing is focused on the players and the team.

"Our job's the pitch. There'll maybe be other people having similar press conferences like this around the country, I don't know.

"But we have to stay strong and focused. We've shown that we're good at that."

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