Reds’ player Nicky Adams said the players at the Checkatrade.com Stadium certainly do not want to see their boss leave.
He said: “If Richie gets the job he deserves it.
“Steve Evans did well for the club but what Richie Barker has done for the club in League 1 with the budget is brilliant. We don’t want to see him go.”
Former Derby County manager Nigel Clough is the bookies’ favourite to fill the Bramall Lane job but is understood to be waiting for his settlement from his former employers before taking on a new position.
Barker’s odds were halved from 8/1 on Monday to 4/1 today on Skybet.
BetVictor had him at even shorter odds at 3/1. Former Reds boss Steve Evans is also tipped with William Hill having him at 25/1.
Barker was not taking questions about the Sheffield vacancy at a press conference today, not an unusual stance in these circumstances.
Barker started his career at Sheffield Wednesday, who he still supports, and then spent a number of years coaching in the Blades youth ranks when he stopped playing before moving on to Bury.