Team- Cowler, Warren, Guthmy, Abdulla, McCluskey, Saville (Thomas), Lee, Khlaf (Hackett), Sykes, Lowe, Allen
Subs- Barnes, Redley, Hackett, Thomas
Score – Barnet 1 Charlton Athletic 3
Goal – Lowe (83 min)
Barnet Under 21 Development Squad took on a Charlton side containing a number of players with Championship experience. This proved to be the difference between the two sides with Charlton having the majority of possession throughout the game. Charlton took the lead after 15 minutes when a cross from the right was played in and their striker had a free header at the far post after some poor marking by Saville and Guthmy. We had a decent defensive shape about us at times but did give the ball away far too cheaply and allowed Charlton to hit us on the break. On 22 minutes the away side went two goals up when a cross from the right was not cleared properly by Cowler who didn’t get enough power on his punch, allowing them an easy tap-in into an empty net. Cowler had made the decision to come but wasn’t protected by his team mates; this is something as young players they have to realise and see the danger quickly.
At half time we spoke to the players about getting closer to Charlton not allowing them so much space to play. Defensively we were too deep and created our own problems by not pushing them higher up the pitch.
We did better in the second half and pressed them and took the game to them. Our wide players played higher up, our midfielders got on the ball and kept it better and we did create a few chances without really testing the visitors’ keeper.
On 76 minutes we conceded another goal after a sloppy bit of play in midfield and they broke and scored from a shot from 30 yards.
We got a goal back with 7 minutes to go when Jamal Lowe chased down a poor back pass and fired past the keeper.
It’s important that the players start to realise that giving the ball away cheaply against teams of this calibre will cost you.