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19:01 6th August 2011


Barnet, courtesy of a second half wonder strike by Mark Byrne gave the Bees a deserved opening day victory over Morecambe at the Globe Arena.
Boss Lawrie Sanchez , in his first match operating as manager selected a 4-4-2 formation with Jason Price partnering Izale McLeod upfront, with the Welshman getting important touches in both penalty areas and holding the ball up well.
Barnet looked dangerous from the off and set about creating chance after chance with Barry Roche being much the busier keeper.
A snap shot from distance by Izale McLeod and a Mark Marshall effort soon after in the first half so easily almost gave the Bees a lead their play warranted.
Morecambe too were able to carve out opportunities but their finishing when their build-up play was good was generally poor; debutant Dean Brill being on hand with a confident display when called upon.
McLeod set-up Byrne on the edge of the penalty area, but his first touch took the ball towards Roche who collected the ball under pressure.
Morecambe started the second half in an offensive mood and for a while the Bees were under pressure.
Barnet held firm and gradually re-established their hold on the game with McLeod hitting the cross bar after a great delivery from the left by Marshall, indications that a Barnet goal was imminent.
The visitors nearly took the lead once more when a deep cross from Danny Senda was met by Marshall only for Roche to somehow keep the ball out from the net.
Stewart Drummond from central midfield was an occasionally danger for the home side, but his finishing was marginally wayward.
In the 76th minute Barnet eventually went ahead. Byrne picked up a loose ball just inside his own half and sent the ball careering with fizz into the top right hand corner.
The home side had called for a handball decision but on viewing the video the ball is hit at Byrne by an opponent from such close range that clearly there was no intention to handle.
Now it was the turn of the Barnet defence to hold firm, and they were equal to the task, all four members getting their bodies in the way to block crosses and shots.
Charlie Taylor, on as a late substitute for McLeod had an opportunity to seal the victory but was a fraction out with his effort.
Morecambe seemed somewhat lacking in self-belief that they had the guile the score against Barnet and the Bees were in no mood to make it easy for them.
Good result, good performance for the Bees.
Barnet are at Fratton Park on Tuesday when the Bees take on Portsmouth in the Carling Cup.
David Bloomfield
    Data provided by Press Association


    For the first 50 years of their existence, England played their home matches all around the country.