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Interviews

Martin Allen: "It's given us something to work on"

12 November 2016

Martin Allen reflects on a breathless 45 minutes at Blundell Park in EFL League Two as Barnet took a point back to north London...

Martin Allen says Barnet's dramatic 2-2 draw at Grimsby Town has given the Bees something to build from after admitting there had been a concerted effort to change the style of play this week.

The Bees enjoyed plenty of possession at Blundell Park and moved the ball well only to find themselves 2-0 down at the break, against the run of play, after an own goal from Elliott Johnson and a rasping Omar Bogle strike.

But in the second half Barnet got their reward when John Akinde stuck away two penalties in the space of five minutes to get the visitors back on level terms.

Barnet substitute Alie Sesay was sent off in the 90th minute – five minutes after coming off the bench – before Bogle had the chance to win it from the spot in injury time, only to send his penalty over the bar.

Speaking afterwards, Allen lifted the lid on the change of tact: "We had to come out fighting after the Exeter City game," he admitted.

"[Our style] certainly wasn't pretty to watch, it was difficult to play against, not nice to play in and for me as a manager it's not great to watch. But it is effective – you get points from playing that way.

"But the players I've brought in are better on the football and at the beginning of this week I decided to do something different and change things. 

"We spent a lot of hours on the training ground this week to get that performance. It has given us something to build on. We're certainly not the finished article, but it's given us something to work on."

The Bees head coach did not feel his side deserved to come in at half time trailing after a first-half in which they enjoyed the best chances; Mauro Vilhete and Ryan Watson going closest.

"I thought our team played very very well and we never deserved to be 2-0 down," Allen said. "We needed a little bit extra in the second half so I changed it at half time to put another forward on. 

"We had controlled the game and found ourselves 2-0 down which we certainly didn't deserve. In the second half it was only a matter of time until we took our chances. 

"It was a good disciplined team performance and I think the referee got all the decisions right – the three penalties were penalties and I think he got Alie Sesay's tackle right as well."

You can watch Martin's full video interview below: 


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