Really brief start up today as manic time of year. This is another quick return match with Barnet only playing 4 matches in the interim, winning two games at home with a draw and loss away. Akinde now has 16 goals to his name and will need to be watched.
Torquay have the disadvantage of a midweek match with a long trip to boot as well. Whether this means that changes will be made, remains to be seen....
Morning campers.....bit nippy round the gills up here in costa del hull.......brrrrrrrrrr.......lol......anyway by round 5ish today....we would have done the double over the league leaders........enjoy your day everyone......si
We need more positive supporters like you Si. Keep it up mate.
A winning double, over whom most would regard as the best side in the division would certainly be a mighty feat, though I fear unlikely and as well as we played up there just a few weeks ago I fancy they were well below par on the night. Stats at this stage of the season don't lie and Barnets goal scoring record is pretty impressive whilst our defensive frailties continue to haunt us even though we have replaced the so called weak links at the back with Ives and Berry. I woudnt be at all surprised if Hargreaves rotates the squad a little today as Barnet had a free midweek and our younger players are not used to continually playing so many competitive matches week after week. Sure to be goals in this return fixture, the two highest scorers in the division, just a matter of who gets the most. My prediction is a hard fought 2-2 draw and I would be satisfied with that. Defeat would not be a surprise considering the experience and firepower Barnet possess and would no doubt feed fuel to the negative among us.
My education started when I left Highweek School for boys..
UGLY - UGLY - UGLY and that wasn't just Akinde! Ugly game, Ugly officials, ugly football which sadly was not the main talking point. Possibly the worst refereeing display I have ever witnessed in all my years as a supporter and that is no exaggeration. I hope we have some good video of he Downes sending off because I saw nothing other than the usual bumping and barging that usually goes on between attacker and defender. It was of course inevitable that referee Brett Huxtable would even things up after harshly perhaps sending of N'Gala for a foul on Bowman a little earlier. In fact I turned to my mate and said that he is bound to even this up after all the Barnet protests and was proved correct. From the first few minutes when challenges were going in, particularly aerial ones , obvious fouls were being alarmingly unpunished you just knew that things were going to deteriorate and players would start to lose patience and their heads. Before the Downes incident. Rice should have seen red for an awful scything challenge on Akinde after he was put through out wide. Later in the game Akinde should have been shown red for a blatant elbow in the face on Pearce. Mac Donald should have also been sent off for an awful challenge on Nurse that left him hardly able to walk and all this because the referee was unfit to officiate at any level let alone Conference level. What happened out there today was a total disgrace soley because the referee and oficials didn't take control early in the game, made some very strange decisions that enraged both sets of players and contributed to to how the game degenerated into a kicking match and at one point when all the players were wound up and running on adrenalin you just wondered what the next bizarre decision was going to come next or if any player was going get seriously injured. It was that bad. Enoug of that now. This was game i feared beforehand where all our failings and shortcomings were going to be exposed and so it proved. Despite some early chances we were undone and opened up by Vihete on fifteen minutes when he slipped through and fired an unstoppable shot past Rice high into the top corner - so much time to pick his spot though I expect the usual; suspects to blame our keeper. The next twenty ods so minutes were a struggle wher ewe failed to hold or pass the ball and were outnumbered in midfield time after time unable to get any ssort of hold on the game. This was interspersed with the sendings off of N'Gala and eventually Downes who also by his supposed actions and Akinde rolling around in the penalty box like hed been shot and the awarded penalty easily converted by the now sprightly Aknde! 0-2 and in effect the end of our afternoon. The second period Barnet surprisingly sat deeper as we managed to gain a foothold in the game with MacDonald Pearce and Berry playing as a back three and Ives pushed into a more forward role. It was having the effect of plenty of possesion with very little cutting edge and I dont thingk Barnet had one effort on goal in the second period but then again we rarely looked like scoring until tired legs in the Barnet back line and a bit of panic allowed Richards to unleash a shot high and past Stack in the Barnet goal. The next and final schoolgirl deccisson then was made not to send off the keeper when he blatently barged Yeoman into the goal post with such forvce I wondered if he was going to get up. A definate sending off that only received a yellow. His time wasting at goal kicks were also going unpunished - swapping sides on many ocassions to re-start that should have picked up a booking as Rice did last week. Barnet didnt really look like the world beaters their position in the table would have you think they just the basics better than us on the day - pressed us all over the pitch first half and then soaked up the pressure in the second with good effect. Drama again at Plainmoor but sadly for all the wrong reasons and I personally never want to see this referee ever again darken the door of our club.
A pretty eventful match without masses of goal mouth action with the referee putting in an inept performance that earned the ire of the crowd! Kick off was actually delayed due to Rice's orange outfit clashing with the Barnet strip - if only that was his only faux pas of the game!
Torquay actually started the better side. Chappell got into a good shooting position and just fired wide from a left footed shot. Bowman received the ball in the area and a delightful flick set up a shot that was well saved by Stack with the rebound not falling kindly. However, moments later, the defence parted like the red sea and Vilete was able to calmly shoot past an onrushing Rice into the vacant net.
So one nil and it almost got a whole lot worse. A through ball to Akinde saw Rice again rush out of the area, miss the ball and kick the striker who went down hard. Although Pearce was a yard or so behind, a definite red imo and Ricey was a lucky boy to get just a yellow. The resulting free kick was made a hash of and we were still in the game! However, Akinde was not happy, eyeballing Rice and would shortly get his revenge!
A couple of things to note at this point as the ref was starting to lose it. Firstly, Akinde wasn't even bothering to challenge for high balls against Downes but nudged him every time he jumped, putting him off and getting away with it! Secondly, when one of their players went down like a sack of spuds under a fair challenge, the ref stopped play with us in an advantageous position - fair enough if he is consistent with this. Also Stack was already slowing things down which got on my wick at this stage.
The match pendulum seemed to swing the other way however when their number 5 went in with what looked like a very rash challenge. The link flagged and was emphatic that he should go. So a man advantage, game on! But not for long. A barnet attack saw the ball played out to the right when I realised that Akinde was laying face down in the area and the lino had his flag up for an off the ball incident. Downes finally snapping after all those fouls or Akinde trying to get revenge and even things up? Lino's opinion was what counted and off walked Downes with the penalty slotted home to rub salt into the wound. Five minutes of injury time and a heck of a mountain to climb in the second half!
The second half saw Barnet play very deep and with Bowman being subbed, possibly with a knock, there was very little cutting edge as we seemed to lose our shape. Ives was pushed further up the pitch and generally did well but seemed to cross the ball on occasions when not under pressure and could have come a lot closer to goal, drawing a defender in and picking out a shorter pass. Pearce was taken out in the middle of the park with a bad challenge which was ruled legitimate and worse play was allowed to continue, contrary to the first half incident in a similar position. From here, Barnet hit the post which would have been an undeserved 0-3 lead.
As always, it was a frenetic finish. McDonald took out Nurse although I thought he got the ball first, however a yellow was issued and with no subs it was suddenly 10 v 9 with Rice charging out to the half way line and crossing the ball in from there on occasions. Generally, with Barnet playing very deep and getting bodies in the way, not many clear opportunities arose with the ball not falling kindly for Torquay players. Richards did let fly with a screamer that cannoned in off the underside of the post. With the ball bouncing around on the line, I think Yeoman wanted to make sure that it was over the line but was shoved into the post for his troubles by Stack who was awarded a very overdue yellow!
We might even have snatched a point in injury time. A cross saw the ball hit a Barnet defender's hand but the lino awarded off side instead?
So Barnet earned their revenge but a football spectacular it was not!!!!
You sum it up well Pete, who actually assesses these officials and deems them fit for purpose? We did not lose today because of the ref but by god he certainly did not help. So frustrating that they seem untouchable, make things up as they go along and then are seemingly unaccountable for their decisions that spoil the game!! On to Halifax next, another tough game. This season has been so topsy turvy so far Lord knows what kind of performance we will produce - world beaters or Sunday league?? Keeps it interesting though!
When we came down last season.....we all knew the calibre of the officials was gong to be an issue......don't get me wrong am using that as an excuse in anyway.........lout as our performances this season are like a bag of revels.......we just don't know what we are getting from week to week........but that's why we love our little club.....it's never dull being a gull......lol....enjoy your. night everyone.......si
Poor refereeing performance or not, we didn't deserve to get anything from that. Complete lack of creativity until Barnet were down to 9 at the end. Even in the 6 minutes between the two red cards we didn't look like exploiting the man advantage. The players looked very sluggish and tired. Bowman looked knackered after only 5 minutes of the second half but had already taken an earlier knock. Only in stoppage time did we wake up with a sense of urgency - until then we had never looked like scoring
I can't see it improving against Halifax and beyond - if the players are tired now, god knows how they are going to be after a lot of games over Christmas. Squad rotation is an absolute must - I was very surprised he picked the same team again today