AJ Leitch-Smith scored his first Vale goal and Sam Foley another as Vale mounted a “smash and grab” win at Oakwell.
Rob Page made two changes to his starting line-up with Adam Yates and Sam Foley coming in for Ben Purkiss and Colin Daniel. Purkiss missed the game with a back injury.
Barnsley threatened through recent addition Adam Hammill but Jak Alnwick made a confident save. The Vale were then grateful to Adam Yates who cleared off the line.
Barnsley were having the best of the first period but against the run of play Vale took the lead through a powerful header by Leitch-Smith. It was the forward’s first goal for the club. The home side continued to press but found Alnwick in good form as Vale reached the interval a goal to the good.
In the second-half, Michael O’Connor was grounded after a collision but Vale continued and good work by Yates and Moore set up Sam Foley who scored the second on 47 minutes.
The home side countered and Connor Hourihane had a good chance to score. Barnsley failed to take that chance but were back in the game with thirteen minutes remaining as Vale scored a calamatous own-goal. Yates headed the ball against McGivern and Winnall scored.
The home side dominated for the closing stages with a Hourihane shot deflected wide as Barnsley pressed. But despite six minutes of injury time, Vale held on for a vital three points.
Vale: Alnwick, Yates, Duffy, McGivern, Dickinson, Grant, O’Connor, Foley (Daniel), Moore, Leitch-Smith (Ikpeazu), Dodds
Subs: Neal, Streete, Birchall, Hooper, Kelly