Martin Allen says that this is ‘a great weekend to be involved in football’, as Barnet prepare for two games in three days over the Easter period looking to maintain their position at the top of the Vanarama Conference table.
Speaking ahead of the game, the manager said that it has been a productive week following the disappointment of conceding a late equaliser against Alfreton Town last time out, and that his team are now ready to go again ahead of an important weekend with six points up for grabs in just three days:
“Let’s not hide from the facts – there is no doubt that it was a bitterly disappointing end to the game. After looking at the DVD of the game, they had one shot on our goal.
“But our players are resilient – they have been prepared to expect setbacks. We have trained to have setbacks and how you cope and how you deal with those tricky days and tricky runs – we have practised it and worked on it all season.
“You can’t dwell on it, you have got to try and learn from it and try and make yourself better at it. I would say that last Saturday is gone; we covered all that on Tuesday. Now it is full steam ahead with two games in two days and a local derby on Monday against Dartford.”
With both of their next opponents in Nuneaton Town and Dartford currently finding themselves in the relegation zone Martin is expecting two tough games over the weekend, but after a good week of preparation is adamant that his players only need worry about their own performance:
“We have seen throughout this season and over my years here at Barnet that the teams nearer the bottom sometimes find a bit extra when they are fighting for their lives.
“I went to watch Dartford on Tuesday night so I know all about them.
“At Nuneaton Liam Daish has found a bit extra with those players, brought in some very good loan players and put them into a good unit. They are a different team to what we played earlier in the season and have had some good results recently but let’s not focus on them.
“Everybody has just got to keep giving it their best. Our players train hard, they work hard, they are good professionals and I think all of us are really looking forward to the game on Saturday afternoon. Charlie is fit now, he trained very hard on Tuesday and I think everybody else is fit as well so we are just about ready to go.
“As we speak now on Thursday morning I have picked the team, the training is all sorted out for Thursday and Friday ready for Saturday and everything is in place now for training on Sunday and our preparations straight after the game for Monday.
“Let’s concentrate on us playing well. We have got a good team to play on Saturday, an exciting team, and we have got good players that can get it down and play and play some great stuff – some great football.”
With two of Barnet’s final five games of the season to come over an action-packed weekend, Martin finished by talking of his excitement at this time of year and his belief that the Bee Army can play their part as the Bees look to get off to a winning start at The Hive on Saturday with the creation of a brand new signing section:
“This weekend is always a big weekend in football. I love the two games in three days. Apparently it is Easter this weekend, but that doesn’t interest me one little bit. We will all be in training on Sunday morning and getting ourselves ready to go again on Monday.
“It is a great weekend in the football calendar and exciting for the players and exciting for the supporters and me personally I just absolutely love it, it is a great three days to be involved in football.
“I am sure that all the people within that section will do as they have done all season to be fair. The supporters have all showed great passion, great commitment and great courage when we haven’t played well – because sometimes we have been pants, let’s face it.
“My job is to get the players to play as best as they can and get them to enjoy playing. If the players do their bit and I do my bit then I am sure that Block B will most definitely play their role.”