The Bees take on Boreham Wood in front of the BT Sport camera's for our first National League fixture of 2021.
Barnet FC vs Boreham Wood
Saturday January 2nd, 17:20
The Hive London
Vanarama National League
Live on BT Sport
League Position: 15th (P12, W5, D3, L4)
Last Match: Boreham Wood 3-2 Aldershot Town - Saturday, December 12th
Manager: Luke Garrard
Club Captain: Mark Ricketts
The Wood haven't been in action for almost three weeks, owing to a series of matches being postponed due to the COVID pandemic amongst opposition teams. They received a bye in the FA Trophy after Yeovil Town couldn't participate in the clash due to a COVID incident, they take on National League leaders Torquay United in the next round of the competition. Meanwhile, they also have an Emirates FA Cup Third Round tie to look forward to next weekend, as they host Championship side Millwall at Meadow Park.
Garrard's men had a similar 19/20 season to Barnet, as they also tasted defeat in the play-off semi-finals, as they lost out to eventual winners Harrogate Town. Since then the Wood have kept a large number of their playing squad and will fancy another push towards the play-offs this time around. They find themselves in mid-table currently but have four games in hand over some teams above them, with the Wood only four points off the final play-off spot. They visit The Hive London on the back of four consecutive victories.
The Bees have struggled against the Wood since the sides met in the 2018/19 season, in fact, the Bees have failed to win against Garrard's men in all six meetings between the sides. However, several of the matches have ended in a stalemate, so Tim Flowers will be hoping to set the record straight as the sides do battle once again.
The Bees had to postpone their two festive fixtures following a positive COVID case amongst the First Team. However, the team returned to training earlier in the week and are raring to go for what will be Flowers' first league match in charge of the Club. It's been a pretty rocky season so far for the Bees and they'll be hoping that they can move on up the table by getting some crucial points on the board, there would be no better way to kick off the year than with a win on home soil.
Flowers has assessed the squad since taking the helm and has been granted a completely new backroom set up, as the Bees look to remedy some of the issues they have faced so far this campaign. A new face entered the camp this week after Myles Judd joined on loan from League Two side Leyton Orient. The full-back will be hoping to impress on debut, should he be selected by his new boss. With Josh Walker also back in full training, there is plenty to be positive about as the new year begins.
Elsewhere, Xander McBurnie returned to the training pitch this week, as he steps up his recovery from a hamstring injury. It is likely the clash with the Wood will come too soon for the midfielder, but he should be available for selection in the upcoming matches, according to the boss. Michael Petrasso also is stepping up his return from injury and is now only a matter of weeks away from returning to the First Team fold. The Canadian loanee has been out on the grass this week and is hopeful of returning to full training in the coming days.
Matt Preston is slightly longer away in his recovery and it looks likely that he may return in February. The big bitter blow to Flowers' side, was the confirmation that Wes Fonguck will be out for the remainder of the season after he sustained an ACL injury, he joins Eliot Richards as a long term absentee. Tyrone Duffus is still undergoing scans to realise the extent of his reoccurring knee problem.
You can hear from the boss below:
LAST TIME WE MET:
The Bees last met the Wood in what would turn out to be our last home game before the first COVID lockdown in March. It was an entertaining affair, as we had to settle for a point in an end-to-end contest.
WHERE TO FOLLOW THE ACTION:
The game will be live on BT Sport 1 from 17:00, with kick-off at 17:20. Due to National League broadcasting rules, we are unable to live stream this fixture. You can read more about this by CLICKING HERE
If you aren't watching the game on the box, there'll be live text updates via the Clubs Twitter account. All the post-match reaction will be across BarnetFC.com and our social media channels.