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Underhill
Underhill

Barnet v Grimsby Preview

By: Sam Kinnaird
Date: 10/02/2009

GRIMSBY and Barnet cross swords both hoping to avoid the infamy of being on paper the worst team in the English football league. Once again though the very existence of the game is subject to a pitch inspection after heavy rain.

Home > 2008-2009 Season > Previews > Barnet (a)


The Opposition

Overview

After being on the verge of collapse in the 1992/3 season after being unable to pay their players’ wages and to meet a deadline for a £50,000 fine, Barnet unbelievably won promotion to the old Division Two under Barry Fry. However they were relegated the next season after registering only five league wins all season. The Bees then became an established side in the Football League’s basement division reaching two play-off semi finals losing to both Colchester and Peterborough respectively. In the 2000/1 season they were relegated to the Vauxhall Conference in a season which saw Tony Cottee replace manager John Still, then the two swapped again weeks later. Still resigned a short time later and was replaced by Peter Shreeves. Under Shreeves Barnet reached the play-off semi final in the 2003/4 season but lost out on penalties to eventual winners Shrewsbury Town. The following season, 2004/05 with Paul Fairclough at the helm, the Bees went one better than the previous season and were crowned Champions of the Nationwide Conference and regained their football league status. They amassed an impressive 86 points in the season, scoring 90 goals with it and finishing 12 point ahead of 2nd placed Hereford. The following season started brightly, Barnet were top after four games, but 4-1 defeat in the Carling Cup trip to Old Trafford was the beginning of a terrible league run of just one win in 12. They were kept in the football league by some good home form towards the end of the season which saw them finish 5 points above the drop-zone. Since then, the Bees have made progress finishing 14th and 12th, this season they have struggled however and currently find themselves in 22nd place with only 4 wins and 22 points all season. Manager Fairclough stepped aside for Ian Hendon to take temporary charge just before Christmas.

The Team

Goalkeeper Lee Harrison is in his 2nd spell with the club, and has made well over 300 appearances for the club, in the current climate and amount of squad turnover in League Two that is some feat. Nigerian centre-back Ismael Yakubu is at the heart of the defence for Barnet and has made over 200 appearances, in the past he has been touted by clubs in higher divisions and is a very good defender at this level. Alongside him this season is 35 year old Gary Breen, signed from Wolves last year he has taken up a role of player/coach at Underhill. In midfield are Michael Leary and Nicky Nicolau, the latter had a trail at Grimsby last summer but was overlooked by Alan Buckley. Up front are the pacey Cliff Akurang and the experienced Paul Furlong and Adam Burchill, although Burchill is only 24 he’s played lots of games at this level for both Wycombe and Barnet. Defender Matt Lockwood was signed on loan from Colchester in January, the set-piece specialist played 328 times for Leyton Orient in a 9 year spell.

Key Player

Albert Adomah. The 21 year old was virtually an unknown when Paul Fairclough plucked him from Harrow Borough in 2008, and has been a revelation for Barnet, scoring 11 goals in 50 games and the subject of a number of big money bids from Scunthorpe in the past. He rejected offers from a number of League Two clubs to sign for the Bees and scored on his debut in a 2-1 win over Hereford. He handed in a transfer request att he back end of last season when bids for him were turned down, and has had run-ins with fans since who were upset with his attitude and performance. However he remains an excellent player at this level, he will work Town’s full backs hard and his pace and power are always a threat.

Recent Form

TownBarnet
DExeter(h)2-2
LBradford(a)0-2
DDagenham(h)1-1
WRotherham(h)3-0
WWycombe(a)1-0
Currently 21st in League Two.
LExeter(h)1-2
DShrewsbury(a)0-0
DAccrington(a)1-1
DDagenham(a)1-1
LBury(h)0-1
Currently 22nd in League Two.

Top Scorers

TownBarnet
Jarman5
Proudlock4
Hegarty3
O'Flynn9
Adomah5

Team News

TownBarnet

  • Defender Rob Atkinson returns from a one-match ban, meaning Matty Heywood likely to step down.

  • New loan signing Adrian Forbes is expected to continue up front in place of the injured Akpro.

  • Dean Sinclair is expected to recover from an ankle injury.
  • Mark Hughes (signed from Chester) and Matt Lockwood (on loan from Colchester) could make their debuts.

  • Ismail Yakubu is available after a hamstring injury

  • Kenny Gillett is again suspended.
  • Squads

    TownBarnet
    1GKPhil Barnes
    2DFRobbie Stockdale
    3DFTom Newey
    4DFRyan Bennett
    5DFMatthew Heywood (c)
    7MFPeter Till
    8MFPaul Bolland
    9MFAdam Proudlock
    10MFChris Llewellyn
    11MFDanny Boshell
    12DFJamie Clarke
    13GKGary Montgomery
    14MFJames Hunt
    15DFMatthew Bird
    16MFJean-Paul Kalala
    17MFNick Hegarty
    18MFPeter Bore
    19FWDanny North
    20FWAndy Taylor
    21DFJoe Widdowson
    22FWNathan Jar man
    23MFGrant Normington
    25MFRob Atkinson
    26FWJean-Louis Akpa Akpro
    27MFMickael Buscher
    28GKLeigh Overton
    30MFStuart Elliot
    31MFDean Sinclair
    31FWAdrian Forbes
    2DFJoe Devera
    3DFKenny Gillet (c)
    4MFNeal Bishop
    5DFIsmail Yakubu
    6MFMichael Leary
    7MFAlbert Adomah
    8MFMax Porter
    9FWCliff Akurang
    10FWAdam Birchall
    11MFNicky Deverdics
    12FWLuke Medley
    18GKLee Harrison
    20DFIan Hendon (caretaker manager)
    22DFJeremy de Magalhaes
    24MFNicky Nicolau
    25GKRan Kadoch
    26DFAbu Ogogo (on loan from Arsenal)
    27DFGary Breen (player/coach)
    28FWPaul Furlong (on loan from Southend United)
    29FWJohn O'Flynn
    30MFYala Bolasie (on loan from Plymouth Argyle)
    TBAMFMark Hughes
    TBADFMatt Lockwood (on loan from Colchester United)

    Head to Head

    Despite the defeat at home earlier this season Town still have a better record against Barnet than any team in their history.

    P 7 W6 D 0 L 1F17 A 2

    Barnet Head-to-Head (1st on The Opposition Ladder)

    Last Meeting

    Grimsby 0 Barnet 1 (Sat 27th Sep 2008)

    One of the worst performances of the season.

    Report

    Prediction

    The Fishy Prediction

    Town have an excellent record against Barnet, and will want revenge for the defeat earlier in the season.

    Barnet 0-1 Grimsby

    Reader's POMs

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