Boss Paul Fairclough is not short of words following the Bees’ 5-2 hammering at the hands of Norwich.
The Canaries were 5 goals to the good after just half an hour of the match being played in the first round of the Carling Cup and following Barnet’s good second-half performance, in which they grabbed two conselation goals, Fairclough revealed his thoughts.
‘I’m consumed at the moment with mixed emotions…I’m welling with pride, I’m angry, I’m disappointed because I think through that 90 minutes we’ve shown every aspect of the game that I think is out there,’ the gaffer told BBC London Radio. ‘We’ve gone from shocking defending to exciting attacking play to heroism to gladitorial response from players.’
Within minutes of the 7:45 PM kick-off, Barnet were two goals down but many supporters would agree with Fairclough when he said ‘I’ve never been in a game like that before where we’re 2-0 down yet we’re the best team at the stage…their keeper made a couple of great saves, we were doing all the attacking and then all of a sudden they hit us with two counter-attacks, their first two shots and they’re in. And the lads were shellshocked and then they quickly scored the other goals.’
‘At 5-0 down, you’re looking at a big scoreline but we gone in, we did our work at half-time…There were a lot of truths said in the dressing room at half-time.’ and the Bees certainly showed what they were capable of, hitting the net twice through strikes from Jason Puncheon and Adam Birchall.
And when he spoke to his players in the away dressing room at Carrow Road, it brough up memories of the Bees’ Conference-winning season three years ago. ‘I remember playing against an Arsenal side in pre-season where we lost 10-0 and obviously you start reminsing and thinking about those things but I also thought about nine months later after that game, and we were promoted to the Football League.’
Despite the 5-2 defeat and Barnet being out of the Carling Cup, the game was very useful to Fairclough because he ‘learnt more and we have learnt more about each other in that 45 minutes than we have done in all the games in pre-season, I’ve everything I needed to know about this team.’
‘A massive massive learning curve for me, for the players,’ he added.