Barnet were able to field a full strength line up for yesterday's home Conference match against Chester with Jack Saville preferred to David Stephens alongside Bondz N'Gala.
Chester started the strongest of the two sides and former Accrington player, Sean McConville should have put Chester ahead early on but headed wide from a very good position. Chester continued to press and new signing, Kane Richards had the ball in the net after chipping Graham Stack following a poor Andy Yiadom header but his effort was ruled offside. The flag had gone up early but many Bees' fans were surprised it was ruled out.
Chester continued to play the better football and Stack produced a fine double save from Chester captain, Matt Brown & Richards before the home side went ahead on 28 minutes after former Hereford midfield player, Kingsley James played a dreadful back pass, meant for keeper, Jon Worsnop, which found the Conference's leading scorer, John AKINDE who rounded Worsnop and fired emphatically home into the centre of the net to put the Bees 1-0 up; a lead they did not deserve. Before Akinde's goal there had only really been a long range effort from Curtis Weston to threaten the Chester goal and Barnet were very fortunate to be ahead at half time.
HT: Barnet 1 Chester 0
Chester started the second half on nthe front foot and Craig Hobson was very unlucky not to score a deserved equaliser, hitting the bar with a fiery shot from outside the penalty area with Stack beaten, but having gifted Barnet the opening goal, the visitors shot themselves in the foot just 6 minutes into the second half when full back Gareth Roberts was sent off for elbowing Luisma Villa. It was a clear red card and before the hour was up, Barnet were 2-0 up. Akinde started the move with a superb ball down the line to Lee Cook whose pin point cross was clipped home by Bees' skipper, Charlie MACDONALD for his first goal for the club since returning from injury.
MacDonald, Akinde & Cook were substituted to protect them with Barnet having 3 more matches to play over the holiday period but ten minutes from time, Barnet confirmed the win with a fine team goal involving Luisma, Bernard Mensah and David Stephens before Curtis WESTON fired home superbly from outside the box to make it 3-0. Mauro Vilhete was superb when coming on as a substitute and could have had a couple of goals himself, but that would have been hard on Chester who, to be honest, were the better side in the first half. Barnet struggled until the sending off but, to their credit, took advantage of the situation and displayed all their silky skills in a commanding second half performance and ended up as worthy winners. The Bees remain 7 points ahead at the top of the Conference table as the head for Aldershot next Friday, followed by home games against Dover and the return match against the Shots.
FT: Barnet 3 Chester 0
Barnet Mad, Man of the Match (joint): John Akinde & Bondz N'Gala
Barnet: Stack; Yiadom, N'Gala, Saville, Johnson; Luisma, Weston, Togwell, Cook (Vilhete 61); Akinde (Stephens 77), MacDonald (mensah 69).
Subs not used: Muggleton, Hunt.