Sunday, 22 January 2012

Match Report: Northampton Town 1– 2 Barnet (Barnet Fan’s Perspective)

It was three League wins in a row for the Bees, a feat not managed for 112 games, and unbeaten in 2012, after a 2–1 victory away at Sixfields. A massive game for both sides at the bottom of the table, in what was being described as a six-pointer – but a win that saw the Bees widen the gap between themselves and the other relegation candidates: eight points from the drop zone, and up to 18th in League Two.
The side was not too dissimilar to the one that won away at Accrington Stanley last weekend, with Mark Byrne replacing Mark Marshall in midfield; he played wide right, whilst Deering was on the left, and Ricky Holmes partnered McLeod upfront. For Town, a debut was made for Chris Weale, goalkeeper on loan from Leicester City.
Weale was brought into play straight away, saving McLeod’s first minute shot, after a route-one clearance from Brill set the top scorer up. It was Northampton who then had the better of the play, and went ahead on 10 minutes – an in-swinging corner from Cobblers’ midfielder, Harding, and a goal for Adebayo Akinfenwa.
There weren’t too many chances of note for either side, although Brill was called in to play just before the half hour mark – a fierce free-kick from Jacobs, and an excellent fingertip save from the Bees’ keeper, who definitely saw it late.
It was a different story in the second half, and being a goal down at the break spurred the away side on. Three minutes in, and Mark Byrne drew Barnet level – a certain contender for Goal of the Season! A 20-yard curler, on his left foot, straight in the top corner; a screamer the home side could have no complaints about.
They could, however, feel aggrieved not to have a penalty after Jacobs was adjudged to have been pushed in the area. There wasn’t really a lot in the challenge, but it was one of those decisions that could well have been given on a different day with a different official.
And it was the Bees who were to be in the ascendancy following that decision, finally going ahead on 69 minutes; Ricky Holmes grabbing the goal, with a through-ball assist from Deering. Another great goal, lashing the ball into the bottom corner – despite claims from the Cobblers that their player was fouled in the build-up. There looked to be little contact at the time, and after viewing again last night, still proves inconclusive.
Another three points, and fairly decent display defensively from the team; the Bees will play host to in-form Crewe Alexandra at Underhill next weekend.

Attendance: 4,561 (away: 485)
Starting line-ups:
Northampton Town: Weale; Crowe, Langmead, Tozer, Adams; Young, Johnson, Jacobs, Harding; Akinfenwa, Berahino.
Barnet: Brill; Hector, Dennehy, Downing, Saville; Deering, Hughes, Kamdjo, Byrne; Holmes, McLeod.

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