Sky Bet League Two
Saturday 19th December 2015
Kick Off: 15:00
Barnet: The Bees were much improved last weekend, when they secured an away draw against Yeovil Town (2-2). Two goals from Aaron McLean helped Martin Allen’s men take home a valuable point from Huish Park, and the team’s performance is cause for optimism ahead of Barnet’s clash with Crawley on Saturday. Ian Lawlor is likely to be between the sticks again at The Hive, as Jamie Stephens continues his recovery from injury. Sam Muggleton is out of action with a calf strain, while Graham Stack is still 5-6 weeks away from full fitness.
Martin’s View: “Everything that I’ve been doing has been focused on us – trying to help our players to get better. If we play well and put a good performance in, then I’m always happy. I’m always ok with that. I like the players to be buzzing, I like the stadium to be buzzing, and I want to give something to the supporters for the good backing that they’ve given us.”
Watch more of the manager’s pre-match interview here.
Crawley Town: The Red Devils are currently 15th in League Two, after an inconsistent first half of the season. Crawley endured a difficult start to the campaign, but their supporters will have been buoyed by an impressive upturn in results during the last few months; the Sussex-based side have won six of their last ten league matches, only losing three games since mid-October. Crawley are sixth in the form table, but have secured most of their points at home this season; the Reds away form is only the 18th best in the division.
In The Dugout: Mark Yates was appointed as Crawley Town’s manager at the tail end of last season, following the team’s relegation from League One. The former midfielder enjoyed a long and successful playing career, making over 600 professional appearances for the likes of Birmingham City, Kidderminster Harriers and Cheltenham Town. Yates won promotion from the Conference and League Two with the Robins, before moving into management in 2006. He took Kidderminster to the FA Trophy Final during his first season in charge of the club, and attracted the attention of Cheltenham after just missing out on the Conference play-offs in 2008-09. The Birmingham-born manager remained in the Whaddon Road dugout for almost five years, leading the team to the League Two play-offs on two occasions.
Dangerman: Rhys Murphy is Crawley Town’s top scorer, with nine goals for the club this season. The 25-year-old is on loan from Oldham Athletic, and has also struck once for his parent side this campaign – prior to beginning his spell at the Broadfield Stadium. Murphy started his career at Arsenal, but never made a senior appearance for the Gunners. Following short loan spells with Brentford and Preston, the Ireland U21 international moved to Dutch second tier side Telstar – scoring seven times in 30 matches. He returned to London after a season, signing for Dagenham & Redbridge in 2013. 46 games and 14 goals later the 6ft 1in striker moved on to Oldham, but has struggled to nail down a first team spot with the Latics since arriving in February 2015.
Last Meeting: The Bees last played Crawley in Lawrie Sanchez’s penultimate match as Barnet manager. His side lost 2-1 in front of just over 2000 supporters at Underhill, thanks to two second half goals from the visitors. Ricky Holmes opened the scoring with a quarter of an hour played, but John Dempster and Scott Davies struck to send Crawley home with all three points. Barnet’s team that day contained four loan signings (Michael Hector, Paul Downing, Sead Hajrovic and Jordan Mustoe), as well as 22-goal top scorer Izale McLeod. Bees legend Scott McGleish came off the bench, as did current Barnet squad member Mauro Vilhete. Dutchman Michael Kuipers started in goal for the Red Devils – he went on to enjoy a brief spell at Underhill in 2013.
Ticket Details: You can book tickets in advance of the game online here, or by phone on 020 8381 3800. Tickets can be bought on the day of the match, but only at the Ticket Office. It is recommended to arrive early to avoid queues.
Members can buy unlimited half price tickets for this match. Find out more about our seasonal discount deal here.
Travel: You can get to and from The Hive by taking our Shuttle Bus service. Buses will be running to an amended timetable this Saturday, as a result of The Hive Christmas Party after the game. Click here for more information.
Food & Drink: Grazioli’s Bar (under the West Stand) will be open from 12:30, and will be serving our range of top quality burgers. Brighton & Hove Albion v Middlesbrough is the televised early kick-off on Saturday, so why not head down to the ground early and enjoy a pre-match beer before the game?
We’ve also got The Hive Christmas Party taking place in the Hive Bar after the game. Tickets include a hot meal and a complimentary drink. Non-members can attend for £10, and members can buy unlimited tickets for just £5! Find out more here.
Prize Draw: Tickets for the Amber Triple Chance Draw are available for just £1. You could win a guaranteed first prize of £200, a £300 Jako voucher in our monthly draw, and be entered in an end-of-season draw for a year’s free Bees Membership! You can get tickets from our sellers around the ground.
Follow The Match: If you can’t get to The Hive, you can listen to full commentary of the match on Bees Player HD. We’ll also have live twitter updates throughout the game, and a match report & post-match reaction on barnetfc.com.