Barnet take on Macclesfield Town tomorrow at Underhill. Both sides are in a similar position; that of looking fairly safe from relegation, but maybe needing another win or two to be entirely comfortable. The Silkmen are a place, and a point, above the Bees in 18th place, but have played a game more.
The Bees will have been greatly encouraged by their excellent 3-1 win over Chesterfield on Easter Monday and, in particular the return to form of striker, Paul Furlong with two fine goals after a goal drought that had seen him without a goal since the end of September. Jake Hyde got back to scoring too and gave one of his best performances in a Barnet shirt. It was the Bees’ first home win in four matches at Underhill.
Macclesfield had a good Easter with a 1-1 draw last Saturday at home to play off hopefuls, Aldershot and a fine 2-1 win at Bradford City on Monday. Macclesfield are now 12 points clear of Grimsby Town, while the Bees are 11 points clear with a game in hand on the Mariners.
Top scorer, John O’Flynn should be fit to return for the Bees, but he might have to be happy with a place on the bench after Hyde and Furlong’s fine performances on Monday. Ismail Yakubu is still out and there is a doubt about Gary Breen’s fitness for tomorrow’s game. Daniel Leach, recalled from his loan spell at Dover, could be in line for his first start for the Bees since January. Albert Adomah has a late fitness test on his injured foot that he collected on Monday.
Macclesfield have a number of players out through injury including midfield players, Hanza Bencherif, Colin Daniel, Ross Draper and Paul Bolland as well as striker, Ricky Sappleton. Full back, Carl Tremarco has a long term injury and will probably be out for the rest of the season.
Like Barnet, Macclesfield have only won four league matches away this season, but they have also drawn 9 and lost 7, while the Bees have returned home without a point on 13 occasions this season.
It is three seasons since Barnet beat Macclesfield, when Adam Birchall scored the only goal at Underhill in January 2007. However, following Barnet’s fine performance on Monday, and not withstanding some erratic form recently, the Bees should be able to win for the second game in the row, particularly as first John O’Flynn and now, Paul Furlong seem to have run into some goalscoring form. With Ian Hendon, at last, seeming willing to play two strikers up front, the Underhill fans could see some goals, but the defence continues to give away silly goals, so Barnet Mad will go for a Barnet win but they might have to come from behind again to do so. We’ll go for 2-1 Barnet.