Thursday, 30 June 2011

Where are they now? – Part two

This week’s where are they now is focused upon the team that won promotion from the Conference to the Football League in the 2004/05 season. There were two ways I could have gone about this – in the end I decided upon going for the starting XI with the most starts in the League campaign.
Scott Tynan
Scotty, most likely to remembered for his obscure haircuts than his saves – although, I’ll always remember him as the man that bought my dad a drink before a game back when the bar was inside the ground – only lasted one and a half seasons at Underhill before moving on. Despite winning a Conference winners medal, he only made 35 appearances from the years of 2004-06, before leaving for Rushden and Diamonds. From there he went on to play for Ebbsfleet United, Northwich Victoria, Salford City and now turns out for Vauxhall Motors – back near his hometown.
Simon King
Kingy, another long serving defender joined the club in 2003 and notched up over 150 appearances as well as winning Player of the Year in 2006/07. Unfortunately he left that season (although for a ripe sum of £200,000) and joined Gillingham where he’s currently playing – although an ankle injury kept him out for an entire season in 2009.
Ian Hendon
Hendon joined the club in 2003 after a spell on-loan from Sheffield Wednesday. He was made captain in his second season with the club and epitomised everything a skipper should be – playing a key role in the back four for four years. After retiring from playing at the end of the 2008/09 season, he decided to concentrate on management – following a role in the team’s management alongside Paul Fairclough. He became manager after Fairclough stepped down, and although was on a two-year contract, was sacked in April 2010 – joining Dover Athletic. He left that post after 18 days and is now assisting Andy Hessenthaler at Gillingham.
Ismail Yakubu
Yakubu was once the longest serving member of the squad – joining at the age of 11 and signing a professional contract at 16. He made his debut at 17 at the same time he was taking his A Levels and was integral part of the squad – falling just short of 300 appearances, despite being plagued by injuries. After being released in 2010, he joined AFC Wimbledon, coming off the bench and scoring a penalty in their play-off final against Luton Town. He now plays for Blue Square Premier outfit, Newport County.

Damien Batt
Damien Batt was another player to receive a Conference winners medal, despite a short stay and few appearances. After leaving the club, he went on to play for many non-league outfits including St Albans City, Woking and Fisher Athletic. He is, however, playing in the Football League at current with Oxford United, where he features regularly. The last time he came back to Underhill, he went off injured.
Richard Graham
‘Tricky’ was one of the players most popular with fans during his time with the club, and I think it’s safe to say when he was released at the end of the 2006/07, many were sad to see him go. After leaving the Bees, he spent two seasons at Dagenham and Redbridge before joining fellow Essex outfit Grays Athletic. He played for non-league club Eastleigh last season, and is now a free agent.
Dean Sinclair
Deano was a popular face amongst the squad throughout his three years with the club, and many were sad to see him go in 2007, despite the £125,000 we managed to get for him as he headed off to Charlton. Despite never playing, he also played on loan in numerous spells with Cheltenham and Grimsby; as well re-joining us for 3 matches. In 2010 he joined Grimsby Town, where he was loaned to Cambridge United. Released by the Mariners at the end of the season, he’s now a free agent.
Nicky Bailey
Nicky was another popular player amongst fans, particularly with the partnership he had in the centre of midfield with Deano – also leaving in 2007 for a fee. He joined Southend where he lasted a season (winning the Player of the Year award) and moved to Charlton for a large sum of £750,000. He now plays for Middlesbrough.
Simon Clist
Clisty was another popular face amongst the squad during his three seasons with the Bees – like Tricky, many were sad to see him released at the end of the 2005/06 season. After leaving the Bees, Simon joined Forest Green Rovers, where he made over 100 appearances for the club. He left there for a fee and moved to Oxford United in 2009 where he continues to feature.
Giuliano Grazioli
Graz is a real Barnet man who lives and breathes the club. After his countless goals won us promotion to the Football League (and won golden boot for 2004/05), he joined Braintree Town and Dover Athletic before a horrific injury caused him to retire. After playing though, Graz joined Barnet again in April 2010 working in a behind-the-scene role as community development officer. He was then made assistant manager to Martin Allen last season, and after his shock departure, was made caretaker manager – managing the great escape! He is now assistant manager to Lawrie Sanchez. One word sums him up: legend!
Ben Strevens
‘Super, super Ben’ was, at one point, the longest serving Bees player – racking up just under 200 appearances in his eight years with the club (minus several seasons of his early career on loan!). As well as this, he was the only to have been relegated to the Conference in 2000/01 and promoted back to the Football League in 2004/05 with Barnet. After leaving the club he joined Crawley, before playing for Dagenham and Redbridge and Brentford. He’s been playing for Wycombe Wanderers since 2010, and I think I speak for most Bees fans when I say how pleased I am for him that he managed to gain promotion to League 1 with the club.

Next week’s entry will be on my All-Time Barnet XI; you can check the previous feature out here.
If there are any squads from yesteryear you would like to see included in this feature - whether it be from a season, or particular match – don’t hesitate to let me know.

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