Barnet like doing things the hard way. Second bottom in League 2 having played far more games than the teams around them, other than Stockport who are the team propping the Football League up. For both the Bees and the Hatters, it seems like relegation is looming. The two other teams on 25 points, Hereford and Burton Albion have played four and seven games respectively less than us. Those games in hand will be crucial in deterring the two teams that will drop out of the League and into Blue Square Land. And believe me, it’s a land no one wants to visit. I’d prefer to go to Tunisia and Egypt at the moment than the doom and gloom of non-league.
On Saturday, it was just a typical Barnet performance. All guns blazing to no avail for the first 10 minutes before petering out to a pathetic whimper like a cat in a washing machine. It was a horrible, bitterly cold, grey afternoon and it seamed like Mark Marshall and Izale McLeod were trying to warm all the Bees fans up. Marshall was busy weaving in and out of the other 21 players on the pitch and was fouled about 2,000 times in the first quarter of an hour, whilst McLeod looked like he was desperate to get his name on the score sheet again. The latter failed in his task, which summed up the Bees performance. A complete and utter failure.
It is the second time that Barnet have been humiliated on home soil against Southend. They beat us 3-1 with 10 men a few months ago in a game which we also started well in before dropping our standard. Before Saturday’s game, Barnet were on a 4 game unbeaten run, which sounds good, but in that time we have only won once. That simply isn’t good enough. But at least it is far better than Mark Stimson’s abysmal record.
Tommy Fraser must really be shocked at what has hit him. It was his home debut after his release from Port Vale. He’s probably taken a pay cut to come to Barnet, and he’s playing in front of two or three times fewer fans in an awful stadium. To be fair, I missed the Macclesfield and Port Vale away games and this was the first time I’ve seen him play. I hope I don’t get in trouble for saying this, (his grandfather is the notorious gangster ‘Mad’ Frankie Fraser) but on the basis of the Southend performance, he looked rather average. He was hauled off at half time so maybe I’m not in a place to give my opinion.
I will be off to Hampshire on Tuesday night when the Bees face the tough task of Aldershot Town, and let’s hope that we will see a much improved performance from Tommy Fraser and Barnet.