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Josh Vickers: "We’re in the play-offs and we’ve got to hold onto that spot"

12 January 2017

Josh Vickers looks ahead to Barnet's clash against league leaders Doncaster Rovers on Saturday...

Goalkeeper Josh Vickers says Barnet are looking to extend their winning run on Saturday when leaders Doncaster Rovers come to The Hive London in EFL League Two.

The Bees moved into the play-off places on Saturday with a 3-1 win at Leyton Orient, a game in which Vickers made his first-team return in following injury to Jamie Stephens.

And the Swansea City loanee hopes to build on consecutive wins when Rovers come to town on Saturday for what promises to be a big game in the promotion picture.

“We went up to Doncaster and narrowly lost out after giving them a good go,” said Vickers. “No-one who comes here enjoys it. 

“Only recently Plymouth came here and we beat them. We’ve got to carry on our good form. We’re in the play-offs and we’ve got to hold onto that spot.

“We can’t be afraid of anyone and you’ve got to have that mind-set. 

“The form we’re in has been good and the fans have been in good form too; they’ve been loud here and especially in the last two or three away games. That only helps us. Hopefully we can get a nice crowd here on Saturday and push on.”

Vickers has pushed Stephens all the way in the last couple of months since seeing the reigning Barnet Player of the Year return to the side. But the Brentwood native was ready to take his chance after nine minutes at The Matchroom Stadium on Saturday.

“You prepare for it as best you can but it doesn’t happen that regularly,” he said. “It was unfortunate Jay got a slight injury but I came on and didn’t have masses to do because the boys in front of me were unbelievable.

“If I remember rightly he did it after his first kick so I got warm pretty early as I had an inkling I might come on. He carried on for five minutes but then I got called back and told I was going on.

“The first thing we had to deal with was a long throw. Thankfully we got that clear and then I just had to settle my way into the game.

“Most of the season the boys in front of me have done really well. We all know what Nelse is like, he will put his body on the line. Ricardo has come in and done really well. At the moment it is working defensively and hopefully it continues.”

The bond between goalkeepers is close and Barnet’s keepers’ union, including Kai McKenzie-Lyle, is no different. Vickers has supported his peers throughout the season and knows he will get the same, should he get a run in the side.

He said: “We work together day in day out. You don’t wish an injury upon anyone else as a footballer but now I have a chance to play. 

“When I was playing at the start of the season he supported me and we have pushed each other all the way in training so it’s a healthy relationship.”

Moving to The Hive has enabled the former Arsenal youngster to make his EFL debut after successful loan stints at Concord Rangers and Canvey Island and Vickers has relished the chance to test himself at a higher level.

“I’ve really enjoyed myself,” he said. There’s not been much transition for me because I’ve moved back home to Essex. There are a good group of lads who have welcomed me in really well.

“I’ve had a few non-league spells but this is my first loan spell in the Football League and that’s massive for anyone. 

“You want to be playing games rather than being sat around. Under-18s and Under-21s is good to an extent but this is proper football and where you learn.”


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