On an overcast, but sunny day at The Hive London, Barnet faced a struggling Crawley side, as The Bees aim to get back to winning ways after the 1-1 draw with Carlisle United.
A frustrating start to the first half for Barnet, with Crawley having the majority of possession, Mark Connolly slicing the ball over on the right wing within five minutes.
The only real chance of the half came from a corner in the 8th minute, a header crashing against the bar after a wonderful corner by Crawley. It took a double clearance, including a bicycle kick from David Tutonda to finally clear their lines.
After The Red Devils dominated the first 15 minutes, Barnet got their first and closest chance. Jack Taylor with a stunning solo run, forcing Glenn Morris into a double save.
Josh Lelan picked up an early booking in the 26th minute, after a poor challenge on Andre Blackman.
Two chances Shaquile Coulthirst in quick succession, the first deflected wide, the second had the Crawley keeper beat, but the ball just whistled past the post.
A scrappy first half came to close, not before a Jimmy Smith free-kick was blocked by Vilhete, leaving both Rossi Eames and Harry Kewell with lots to think about at the break, with the latter maybe wondering how the deadlock wasn’t broken.
The second half started much like the first, with Ibrahim Meite having yet another shot cleared off the line, with Crawley thinking what else they could possibly do to break the Barnet defence.
Lewis Young went on a lovely run in the 59th minute, slotting through Jordan Roberts who forced a low save out of Ross
Just three minutes later the deadlock was inevitably broken when Connolly played the ball low into the area to give JIMMY SMITH the easy job of slotting the ball past Ross, the Crawley captain showing his team how it’s done.
The lead didn’t last long, however, substitute Simeon Akionla scoring in the 64th minute following a lovely ball from Vilhete. Akinola had only been on the pitch for a minute, making the instant impact Eames would’ve wanted.
The game continued its scrappy tone from the first half, both Connolly and Tutonda picking up yellow cards, the latter coming in the 78th minute.
Barnet nearly took the lead thanks to a poor defensive header from Lelan, Harry Taylor nearly picking up an assist even he didn’t expect.
In the 87th minute, with the Barnet defence taking a rare lapse of concentration, a deep cross was met again by Jimmy Smith to double his and Crawley’s tally on the day.
Malakai Mars came on for his first senior appearance with a late substitution, replacing Harry Taylor.
Defeat for Barnet in a game that could’ve seen twice as many goals, coming up against a Crawley side who were clearly very hungry for their third win of the season.
Man of the Match (as chosen by corporate sponsor StadiumSeekers): 21. Craig Ross
Attendance: 1602 (196 away)
BARNET: Ross, Clough, Nelson, Campbell-Ryce, Coulthirst, J.Taylor (73’ Fonguck), Tutonda, H. Taylor (89’ Mars), Vilhete,
Blackman, Akpa Akpro (63’ Akinola)
Unused: McKenzie-Lyle, Bover , Mason-Clark, Smith.