Seven games ago, Barnet were dead and buried, nailed on for relegation to the National League and Bees supporters resigned to the fact the club will finish bottom of the entire National League.
Then came the phone call Tony Kleanthous must have on speed dial, Martin Allen, the fire-fighter in black and amber. Been here before, bought the t-shirt and survived time after time, but this time ‘mission impossible’ looked even impossible for the man known as Mad Dog.
As we head into the final round of EFL games this weekend, Barnet remarkably can still survive but things are out of their hands. In Allen’s 7 games in charge, the Bees have won 4, drawn 1 and lost just 2. Bearing in mind between four managers, Barnet had won just 7 times all season with the same players Allen is using.
Whilst the Bees have been picking up points Chesterfield, who are Saturday’s visitors, have already been relegated. Having been a point in front of the Bees when Allen arrived The Spireites are now 5 points behind and pride left to play for.
Morecambe were 9 points clear of the Bees at this point too and with games in hand similar to Chesterfield. Last weekend’s win for Barnet at their fellow strugglers increased their wretched run and in the time Allen’s men have picked up 13 points, the Shrimps have managed just 6 and by 5pm on Saturday one side will fall through the Football League trapdoor back to non league. Barnet are in the ascendancy, 4 games unbeaten vs Morecambe’s 9 games without a win.
What Allen has achieved with the same squad of players is nothing short of remarkable and he’s confident one more huge performance is within them. As mentioned above, all Barnet can do is win and that might not be enough to save them. Morecambe head to a rampant Coventry who hit 6 goals at Cheltenham last weekend and whilst a point should be enough for them to take their place in the play-offs, a point would definitely be enough for the Shrimps unless Barnet win by 7 goals!
There are very few tickets left at The Hive for the biggest game in three years for Barnet FC, there is no doubt Mad Dog will have his side up and ready for this game, it’s testament to his managerial skills that he’s dragged the club into the final day with a fighting chance of survival, would you bet against him completing mission impossible? You’ll find out soon enough, the excitement is just beginning to tingle…………….