Barnet Football Club



Preview: Sutton United (A) – Vanarama National League

Darren Currie’s side will be looking to make it two wins on the bounce after clinching a 1-0 win against Yeovil Town on the opening day at the weekend.

Simeon Akinola won a penalty on the hour mark before the forward stepped up and slotted the ball home to net the only goal of the game.

The Opposition:

Sutton finished 10th in the National League last season, five points ahead of the Bees.

The U’s, who have never played in the Football League, are embarking on their fourth season in the fourth tier after winning promotion from the National League South in 2016.

Sutton will have promotion in their sights this campaign and it was only a year ago since they finished in a play-off spot, clinching third in their highest ever league position.

Similarly to Barnet, the U’s also got off to a winning start on Saturday. Travelling to Hartlepool United, they emerged 3-1 winners courtesy of a Harry Beautyman brace and a stoppage time sealer from new signing Will Randall.

The latter, who joined the club in July, is one of many summer arrivals, including Rob Milsom from Notts County and Bromley’s Omar Bugiel.

There was also a managerial change for the U’s as Matt Gray was named boss following the departure of Paul Doswell and interim reign of Ian Baird.

Manager: Matt Gray

After initially joining as head coach in December 2018, the 37-year-old was named Sutton boss in May, embarking on his first ever managerial position.

Prior to his arrival at Gander Green Lane, he took up number two roles at Eastleigh, Aldershot Town and Crawley Town respectively.

As a player, Gray began his career at Tottenham Hotspur before going on to play for Cardiff City, Hayes and Havant & Waterlooville.

However, his playing career was cut short after he was forced to hang up his boots due to injury.

Top Scorer: Harry Beautyman

After netting twice already this season, midfielder Beautyman is the league’s joint-top scorer with Dover’s Alfie Pavey.

The 27-year-old first joined the U’s in 2011 in a spell which lasted two years. Fast forward to January 2018 and Beautyman was back at Gander Green Lane after spells with Welling United, Peterborough United, Northampton Town and Stevenage respectively.

Joining mid-way through the 2017/18 season, the midfielder would go on to net once in 14 appearances before extending that tally to four last time around.

It was during his first spell at Sutton that Beautyman was called upon for the England C team, making his debut in 2013.

Last Time Out:

The last time these two sides met was in February as both teams had to settle for a goalless draw at Gander Green Lane in the National League.

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