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Martin Allen: “The players have done us all proud”

2 April 2016

Barnet’s manager discusses the 4-2 defeat to Morecambe.

Martin Allen has acknowledged that the Bees didn’t perform well against Morecambe this afternoon, but believes that the players can be proud of their performances across the season.

Speaking after the game, the Barnet manager said:

“I don’t think we really got started – within five minutes we could have been two nil down.

“That’s a real surprise after the whole squad did us proud over the Easter period, getting four points away at Exeter and at home to Luton.

“We freshened it up today and brought some new players in, but we looked too open.

“To be fair to Morecambe they played well, but when we stepped it up in the second half we had four good chances to get back into the game.

“But it just didn’t really work for us today.

“It’s down to me because I’m the coach.

“I’m the one who puts it all into place, I’m the one who changed the formation to play a little bit differently today, and it just didn’t work.

“It’s my job, my responsibility, and I have to take it on both my chins!

“It’s down to me and not the players – the whole squad have done me and the club proud.

“They’ve run themselves into the ground and competed week in week out.

“We played superbly at Exeter and for 60 or 70 minutes against Luton we were absolutely top draw.

“Then we hung on and grabbed that last minute winner.

“Today the players weren’t as good as they have been.

“But don’t blame them, blame me – I look after these lads and it’s my job to make sure they’re all ok. 

“There are always positives from our boys though.

“They kept going right to the end; I think they were 4-1 down and had two chances cleared off the line.

“Young Maty Stevens has come on and nearly scored two – I’d say that was a great positive.

“For me personally, I’ve got to make decisions soon.

“So these players are playing for their places and their futures.

“I can sit here today and learn, see if they’re up to it, and make sure they’re up for it. 

“So I’m able to learn from the games, and sometimes these games help me make decisions. 

“There will be some changes for next week, there’s no doubt about it - as much as the players have done us all proud.

“At a real shove Elliott Johnson perhaps could have played today, but I left him at home to get a full recovery.

“At a real shove Curtis Weston could have played today too, but I left him at home with his family to make sure that he gets himself right. 

“Bira Dembele is now fit, and Michael Nelson has been rested today because he has been outstanding in the Easter matches. 

“I rested Michael Gash because he came back into the first team so quickly.

“I thought that a third game in eight days might be a problem. 

“But when he came in I thought that he did superbly. 

“Then there is Jamie Stephens too.

“So we’ve got some good players to come back into the team for next weekend.

“There’s no doubt about it, they will come in.”

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