BARNET Just because it’s the FA Cup it doesn’t mean we give Tom a week off, far from it, and yet again he has come up trumps and found us a Bees fan to give us the lowdown on his team. So, we extend a big MK Dons thank you to Mehmet Aydogan for answering the questions, and whatever the score we wish you and the Bees of Barnet all the best for the season.
Can you tell us something about your club that a general football fan might not know?
There are probably a lot of things the general football fan doesn’t know about Barnet. Maybe that Barnet doesn’t play in Barnet anymore (Canon’s Park in the Borough of Harrow)? We know a group of Northern fans definitely didn’t realise this when they turned up to where Underhill was and found a building site! Or that Edgar Davids was our coach for two seasons, or that Albert Adomah, Yannick Bolasie, and Jason Puncheon all came of age at Barnet!
How is your season going so far, and does it meet your pre-season expectations?
Our season has been up and down so far. Our Chairman released virtually our whole squad and our manager Darren Currie left. New manager Peter Beadle had 8 days to build a squad, so with all the new faces that has reflected in our performances. We’ve been out played by the teams that had continuity from last season but on the other hand, knocked out Division 1 Burton in the FA Cup and had some good away wins. One thing we do seem to do well is dig in to protect a lead so that will come in handy in our fixture against MK.
It’s been 3 years since Barnet played in the Football League, and in the last 20 years or so you have bounced between National and Football League, are you hopeful of another return in the near future?
With so many players coming in this season, Barnet fans are expecting a season of consolidation. A couple of signings look positive like Michael Petrasso, Anthony Wordsworth, and JJ Hooper, and if we can develop as the season goes on, maybe we can use it as a springboard for next year. It’s a shame because before Covid 19, our team had hit peak form, was on a run of 1 loss in 18 and on course for 3rd or 4th which would have meant one game before Wembley. Instead, when the season had restarted with Barnet in the play offs on PPG and having to play an extra game, 4 players (3 defenders from our first XI) had left and then we had the mass exodus when we got knocked out.
Which player is likely to be the game changer or dangerman for Barnet in our FA Cup clash?
Barnet have several exceptionally talented forward players. Hopefully, Josh Walker has shaken off the knock that kept him out of a couple of games. On his day he’s probably the best finisher in this league. We also have JJ Hooper who has started the season with a handful of goals but the real gem in our team is Ephron Mason-Clark who took apart Sheffield United in the FA Cup a season and a half ago.
What sort of style of football and formation can we expect to see from the Bees?
This season we’ve mainly been playing a 4-2-3-1 with two wingers and Wes Fonguck playing in the number 10 role. We like to pass the ball and move it wide and our wingers are very direct and like to run at their full back.
Are you aware of any of the MK Dons players, and who are you most afraid of?
To be honest, I’m stuck in a National League silo at the moment so not been looking at what goes on in the Football League. I’ve just googled your squad and with players like Keogh, Lewington and Jerome you seem to have a lot of experience.
Score prediction for the game?
I’m going for another Barnet shock so 2-1 to the Bees!
Any other comments?
Listen to Beespod, an independent Barnet podcast on all good podcast apps!