Who Are Ya? - Barnet (#1)
How Long Have You Supported Barnet?
First season I remember was as a 9/10 year old in the 2004/05 season watching us storm the Conference and win week after week. At the time I thought being a Barnet supporter was always going to be like that.
Last Season's League Finish?
What Do You Think Of Your Manager?
Graham Westley has just taken over. By all intensive purposes, he is the most nasty, horrible, piece of work, and a downright bully. That aside, his recent track record is atrocious, his teams are full of kick and run in any direction, and quite frankly he is an absolute disgrace of an appointment. Fans have previously joked about one day having Westley as our manager, but now the nightmare has become a reality and supporters are all very angry about the situation.
However, the disgraceful players have put us through enough pain and torture this season, so I hope Westley makes their lives as horrible in the last months of the season, as they have made ours since September.
Hopes/Expectations This Season?
I hope for 22nd place, but fat chance of that happening with this group of players.
In reality, we are going to finish rock bottom and will be relegated with at least 3 or 4 matches of the season to spare. The players will get what they deserve, get released come the summer, and never earn another professional contract in their careers. I wouldn't wish any of this current lot of players on Stevenage fans even.
One(s) To Watch?
None of them are worth watching. John Akinde for the nostalgia after doing so much to help us win the Conference a few years ago, but I wouldn't lose any sleep if he were to now join Lincoln on Friday and make his debut against us the following day.
Top Seven Predictions?
I couldn't care less about any other team in the division, so I have had to look at the top half of the table (for a change) in order to make me aware of exactly who is near the top. But based on how teams currently sit, and the size of the clubs:
1. Luton Town
2. Notts County
3. Lincoln City
4. Mansfield Town
5. Accrington Stanley
6. Swindon Town
7. Coventry City
Bottom Two Predictions?
24th (by about a dozen points) Barnet
Thoughts on Lincoln City?
I am jealous every time I go up to Lincoln. It is an absolutely beautiful City, and the stadium is in a good location with fantastic views of the Cathedral in the distance. I would most definitely be a Lincoln supporter if I lived up in the City.
The pitch always seems to be quite good as well as far as I can remember, which I respect a lot; not that Barnet ever need it like a bowling green.
I do find it strange how many supporters seem to have returned and jumped on the bandwagon though in the past couple of years, since the team has started doing well again. Perhaps if all the supporters turned up 5 or 6 years ago, Promotion would have been reached a lot sooner. You do fear that if they go on a bad run of results, crowds may dwindle back to the 3 or 4 thousand mark.
Barnet 0-4 Lincoln.
Random Fact About Your Club?
The likes of Neymar and Zlatan Ibrahimovic have all trained at the fantastic facilities at the Hive before games against England at Wembley, as has the Germany National Team and Borussia Dortmund.
And straight from Wikipedia:
"The club's current crest was designed in the 1950s and contains the green hill of High Barnet and the red rose, white rose and crossed swords representing the 1471 Battle of Barnet, a pivotal battle in the Wars of the Roses. The badge was designed by Sidney Robert Price who was the chairman of the club at the time."
What are your proudest and most embarrassing moments as a Barnet Supporter?
My proudest moment was watching us win the Conference in 2015. When speaking to colleagues a few days later about it, I almost cried in the office a bit a few days after our home win on the Final day of the season at home to Gateshead to beat that massive club Bristol Rovers to the title. I was so proud and relieved, and it was like watching your child ride a bike on their own without stabilisers for the first time.
But by far the most angry and embarrassed I have been as a Barnet supporter, is here and now. Rock bottom of the Football League with the worst group of football players anyone has ever seen play for Barnet. I loathe to even think about any of our current players, because they all make me sick thinking about how mentally weak they are, especially with all the late and last minute goals they concede.
Do you have a Supporters Trust and what role do they play at the Club?
I believe it is more of a Supporters Liaison Group, who just speak to the club a few times a year. I don't think they play much of a role.
Which was your favourite match involving Barnet?
Beating Farnborough at Underhill 7-1 in our 2004/05 Conference Winning season. Giuliano Grazioli scored a first half hat trick; one of the goals being when the opposition goal keeper put the ball down, and Graz just nicked in from behind him to tuck the ball into the net. It was a scorching hot day, and the match was closed to being abandoned due to how many Farnborough players were getting sent off and injured.
BBC Sport: Barnet 7-1 Farnborough
Which was your least favourite match involving Barnet?
Getting relegated back down to the Conference in 2013 on the Final day of the season away at Northampton. The one positive thing about this current group of incompetent players is that at least we won't have the pain of getting relegated on the final day of the season this time around; our fate will be sealed long before.
Barnet is another term for hair. Do you see your club as short-back-and-sides or more of a mullet?
A mullet is the worst hair style. Therefore, as the worst football team and squad of players, we are defiantly more of a mullet We have only won something like 11 games in 12 months for goodness sake!
Do you consider yourself a 'yo-yo club'?
No, when we got promoted from the Conference in 2005, it was 8 years before we got relegated again.
Also, yo-yo's always come back up. I cannot see us coming back up any time soon when we get relegated this time around.
Given how successful The Hive apparently is from a money point of view, that success doesn't seem to translate itself onto the pitch in terms of player recruitment?
No it doesn't.
Our current state of abysmal player recruitment is all down to our ex manager Rossi Eames (you probably haven't heard of him, and probably never will in the future either as he won't be getting another job in first team football.) He picked and bought most of the current group of disgracefully atrocious and incompetent players who are simply not good enough for the Football League. This is all despite of the money spinning Hive which has allowed us to have a budget that should comfortably see us in the top half of this division.
Quite frankly, I am so annoyed at how so much money (including quite a number of transfer fees which are relatively large by League 2 standards) has been wasted on pathetic waste of spaces.
You signed Ben Tomlinson from us 3 seasons ago, but I gather it wasn't a successful spell?
No, Tomlinson didn't do well but apparently that's because he was homesick and wanted to be back up North, I seem to remember. I don't think he was too bad at times, and most certainly he was better than anyone currently pulling on the black and amber shirt.
I have just had to Google to see that he is now at Halifax.
Why hasn't a Club taken Akinde from you? His record is basically 1 in 2 but no-one seems to have had a serious go for him.
After all the goals he scored that lead to us winning the Conference, we somehow persuaded him to sign a new 3 year deal, which apparently put him on par with some of the better earners in League 1. We thought that would mean that he would then be sold on for a big fee the following January, yet he is still here two and a half years later having had two good years as one of the top scorers in League 2.
I presume money has been a factor why he hasn't left just yet, but I imagine he will seek pastures new this summer when we get relegated. It is a crying shame that all his amazing work since joining the club (which will see him go down as one of Barnet's best ever players,) will be rendered pointless this summer, thanks to his current crop of inept teammates.
You have a relatively new Stadium. Aside from the location issue, and for a Club like ourselves who hope to be moving Stadium soon, what would be your dos and don'ts in your experience of The Hive?
The pasta dishes and paninis from the onsite Starbucks (I am a true lover of the perks of modern day football,) are actually really nice. With Lincoln bringing so many fans down, I'm sure a number of them will try it out.
I don't believe you have come to the Hive since the new North Stand for away fans has been built, replacing the old scrappy terrace. The sightlines are also great, despite being behind the goal, which I never normally like.
There isn't much in the surrounding area though, but a 25 minute walk or short bus ride away is Edgware, which is not exactly Monte Carlo, but has a number of eating places but a sheer lack of drinking options.
The selection of food when you get inside the stadium one you get through the turnstiles is actually a disgrace, with only really plain hot dogs and burgers.
Akinola's transfer didn't quite happen. How's he done for you since then?
Akinola has been used mainly as a substitute this season since the transfer debacle. Incompetent and out of depth Rossi Eames hardly played him, nor did Mark McGhee. Time will tell what Westley does with him, but I doubt he is going to be a regular starter. When he does come off the substitutes bench though, he often receives a better reception from the crowd than any other player, so he hasn't exactly been a massive failure. But I do feel incredibly sorry for him that his move to a great club and city in Lincoln broke down in the way it did, leaving him stuck with a bunch of useless teammates back down in North West London.
Who Are Ya? - Barnet (#2)
Who Are Ya? - Barnet (#3)