Barnet in the League Cup (Part One)
Article by Jaybee
Updated Monday, 6th August 2012
Barnet Mad looks back at how the Bees have fared throughout the years in the League Cup
Barnet travel to St Andrews next Tuesday to play Birmingham City in the 1st round of the League Cup and in light of this, it seems timely to look at how the Bees have performed in the League Cup.
Barnet first entered the League Cup, then named the Rumbelows Cup, in 1991, following their promotion from the GM Vauxhall Conference to the 4th division of the Football League. They were drawn against Brentford in the 1st Round to be played over two legs. The first leg was played at Underhill in front of nearly 3,000 fans and produced a remarkable 5-5 draw. Barnet took the lead in the 9th minute when Nicky Evans headed home, but Brentford soon went 2-1 up. However, Mark Carter headed home an equaliser before half time to make it 2-2.
Barnet were 4-2 up within five minutes of the restart with goals from Nicky Evans and Gary Bull, but Brentford pulled one back to make it 4-3. Ten minutes from full time, Gary Bull made it 5-3 to Barnet, but the Bees couldn’t hold on and Brentford scored twice, the equaliser coming in the fifth minute of injury time. Barnet’s side that night was; Berryman, Blackford, Naylor, Horton (Lynch), Howell, Johnson,Poole, Carter, Bull, Evans, Hoddle.
In the second leg atGriffinPark, Brentford won 3-1 to win the tie 8-6 on aggregate, Mark Carter scoring for the Bees.
The following season, 1992/93, Barnet were drawn to play Peterborough United in the 1st Round of the, newly named, Coca Cola Cup. However, they lost heavily in the first leg, atLondon Road, going down 4-0 giving them little chance of retrieving the tie in the second leg. The match at Underhill ended in a 2-2 draw, Gary Bull scoring both the Barnet goals, but Barnet went out of the competition, 6-2. At the end of that season, Barnet were promoted to Division Two, but due to financial problems and punishments unfairly handed out by the Football League, Barnet lost most of the players that had taken them from the Conference o the third tier of the Football League. So for the new season, 1993/94, Barnet’s new manager, Gary Phillips had had to assemble a scratch side for the new season as best he could.
In the Coca Cola Cup, in the most ironic of draws, Barnet were paired with 1st Division side, Southend United, who were now managed by former Barnet boss, Barry Fry who had been the man largely instrumental in taking Barnet up two levels in three seasons. Barnet gave a strong and brave performance against a Southend side containing two players who had walked out on Barnet, Derek Payne and Jonathon Hunt. The Bees won the first leg 2-0 at Southend with goals from Tony Lynch and new signing, Alan Walker. The return leg at Underhill was drawn 1-1 with Barnet’s goal coming from another new player, Kelly Haag. At the end of the match, Fry congratulated every Barnet player as they came of the pitch. Barnet had won the tie 3-1 on aggregate and had won through to the 2nd Round of the League Cup for the first time.
In the 2nd Round, Barnet were paired with Premiership club, QPR. Barnet lost the 1st leg at Underhill, 2-1 with the Bees’ goal coming from Tony Lynch and crashed out 4-0 atLoftus Road in the second leg to go out of the tournament 6-1 on aggregate.
By the start of the 1994/95 season, Ray Clemence had taken over as Barnet manager and the Bees, who were now back in Division 3, were able to win through to the 2nd Round of the Coca Cola Cup for the second season running. In the 1st Round, they met Division 2 club, Leyton Orient. The first leg was at Underhill and following a goalless first half, two goals apiece for Dougie Freedman and Mark Cooper gave Barnet a comprehensive 4-0 first leg victory. In the 2nd leg atBrisbane Road, Freedman scored again in a 1-1 draw, giving the Bees a 5-1 aggregate victory.
In the 2nd Round, Barnet were, once again, drawn against a Premiership club, this time, Manchester City and Dougie Freedman was on target again as the Bees stunned City winning 1-0. Unfortunately, City proved too strong for Barnet in the 2nd leg atMaine Road, winning 4-1, freedman again scoring the Bees’ goal.
In 1995/96, Barnet were against division 1 club, Charlton Athletic. The first match at Underhill was a goalless draw and the Valiants won the return leg 2-0 to win 2-0 on aggregate.
The following season, 1996/97, Barnet were paired with fellow Division 3 side, ExeterCity. The Grecians had home advantage in the 1st leg, but Barnet won 4-0 with goals from Phil Simpson, Sean Devine, Robert Codner and Micky Tomlinson. The barnet side was;Taylor, Gale, Hardyman, Codner (Campbell), Primus, Howarth, McDonald, Rattray (Brady),Brazil,Wilson, Devine (Tomlinson), Pardew.
Barnet won the 2nd leg, at Underhill, 2-0 with goals from Jamie Campbell and Paul Wilson and won through to the 2nd Round for the third time in four seasons. In the 2nd Round, they were paired with West Ham United, another Premiership club. Barnet gave a brave performance, matching the Hammers, in the 1st leg at Underhill and their reward was a 1-1 draw with Phil Simpson scoring for the Bees. West Ham won the 2nd leg at Upton Park to win 2-1 on aggregate.
Barnet were drawn to play Division 1 club, Norwich City in the 1997/98 season and in the 1st leg at Carrow Road, the Bees gained a fine 1-1 draw thanks to an own goal. In the 2nd leg at Underhill, Barnet gave a brilliant display and won 3-1 with two goals from Sean Devine and one from Greg Heald.
For the following season, 1998/99, the League Cup had new sponsors and was now relabelled the Worthington Cup. Having reached the 2nd Round of the Coca Cola Cup four times in the last five seasons, the change of name did not prove a good omen for the Bees. Barnet were drawn to play another Division 1 club, this time, Wolves in the 1st Round and gave another excellent performance I the 1st leg at Underhill, winning 2-1 with goals from Darren Currie and Scott McGleish but went down 5-0 at Molyneux to lose the tie 6-2 on aggregate.
In 1999/00, Barnet were drawn to play division 2 club, Bournemouthand the 1st leg was away at Dean Court. The Cherries won comfortably 2-0. However, in the 2nd leg at Underhill, Barnet made a brave attempt to salvage the tie after Mark Stein, now physiotherapist at Underhill, scored twice to make the aggregate score 4-0 to Bournemouth. Before half time, barnet had drawn level on the night with two goals from Scott McGleish. With 25 minutes of the match remaining Warren Hackett put the Bees 3-2 up on the night but still 4-3 behind on aggregate. The Bees through everything at Bournemouth in an attempt to level the tie and in the closing minutes Scott McGleish lobbed theBournemouth keeper only to see the ball cleared off the line, although many at the match that night felt that the ball had crossed the line. In the end, though,Bournemouth went though by winning 4-3 on aggregate. The Barnet side that night was; Naisbitt, Stockley (King), Sawyers (Ansell), Heald, Arber, Doolan, Charlery (Strevens), Currie, Hackett, McGleish, Toms.
The following season, 2000/01, Barnet again went out in the 1st Round, this time against Wycombe. Barnet won the 1st leg, at Underhill, 2-1 with goals from John Doolan and Scott McGleish, but Wycombe won the return leg 3-1 to win 4-3 on aggregate. Tony Richards scored the Barnet goal. At the end of the season, Barnet were relegated to the Conference after a spell of 10 years in league football. They were not to return to play league football for another four years, which meant of course, for the time being their League Cup adventures were over.