Paul Fairclough has taken three more players on trial as he continues his search for new faces to add to the Barnet squad for the upcoming season.
Defender Nathan Koo-Boothe has been handed a trial after he failed in one for Coventry last week; he scored an own goal in the 2-2 draw with Nuneaton and now he finds himself trying to earn a contract with Barnet.
Koo-Boothe, a 22 year old centre-half is strong and tall, at 6’2′ and started his career as a youngster at Watford. He was signed by then League One side MK Dons in 2004 but only managed three appearances with the club, often being forced to play in the reserve team because he failed to make the starting XI or the bench. Strangely, his first start of the season came in the Dons’ 3-0 win at Underhill against Barnet in the LDV Vans Trophy and also, in the reserves, he played with Jason Puncheon meaning the two could link up again, this time in the first-team under Fairclough, if Koo-Boothe succeeds in his trial.
Whilst with the Dons he went on loan to Grays Athletic before joining Kettering Town when he was released by Danny Wilson, along with Puncheon.
Koo-Boothe can also play in the centre of the park and was put there in a few games when he was with the Poppies last season. Koo-Boothe left the non-league side in the close-season by his own decision, rather than because he wasn’t retained.
The second new trialist is teenager Danny Hart who arrives from Boreham Wood FC. The 18 year old is a right-winger who progressed through the club’s PASE Scheme which tries to develop young talent. Although Hart was retained by the Boreham Wood boss for the 2007/08 season, he has arrived at Barnet on trial with the hope of making the switch to the Football League.
Hart impressed for the wood last season. In the 17 appearances he made, he scored twice and gave 7 assists. He also was named man of the match on one occassion. He has not received a single card of any sort in the games he’s played in his career thus far. The season before he made his professional debut aged 16. In made one more appearance after than, with one assist.
Hart was on the bench when a Bees’ trialist team lost 5-1 at Farnborough a couple of weeks ago.
The other trialist joining the ranks is forward James Lawson, a 20 year old 6-foot tall player who has been with Southend Utd, Dagenham & Redbridge, Grimsby Town and Bournemouth.
Lawson was awarded his first professional deal at Roots Hall after an impressive start to the season in 2005. He netted just 10 minutes into his debut against Oldham Athletic, and scored twice in his first three games. He kept his starting place in the side for the next few weeks until injury forced him off and from then on never managed to steak a regular starting place. In the times he did play, he was often played on the wing instead of up front. A Grimsby loan spell was unsuccessful and was sent back to his parent club after just two weeks before joining Bornemouth in January this year on a month’s loan and was loaned for the Daggers in February for another month’s loan. In between the different clubs he was loaned to, he was left playing reserve football for Southend and eventually he was released by the Shrimpers in the close-season.
Southend boss Steve Tilson told the Blue’s website, on Lawson’s departure: “A fresh start and a new challenge is what James needs. He needs to work on his physical strength and be mentally tougher so that his speed and touch on the ball can be better utilised.”
Grays Athletic have been linked with the striker but they will be seen as second-choice to Barnet, because they play in the Conference.