3:00pm - SaturdaySat 12th OctoberOct 2019
The Hive Stadium | Att: 1651

2 - 2


Cards continue to search for long-awaited league win

Glen Harrington
7:28pm, Thu 10th Oct 2019
Barnet vs Woking
Vanarama National League
Saturday 12th October 2019

The Cards will continue their search for a first league win since August on Saturday as they travel to face another former Football League side in the shape of Barnet.

It’s far from doom and gloom for Alan Dowson’s side who despite an eight-match winless run, which includes three defeats in the last four games, remain fifth in the National League table and just six points adrift of league leaders FC Halifax Town. However, Dowse will know that his team will need to show more against Barnet than they did during the first-half against Yeovil Town on Tuesday evening, if they are to address their recent slide. The Cards were put to the sword in mid-week with a clinical performance from their hosts who scored three unanswered goals before half-time. Woking were better after the break and scored a fine consolation through substitute Ibrahim Meite, but still suffered a defeat by more than a single goal margin for the first time this season, falling five points behind the Glovers who are now third.

Barnet would have been amongst those hopeful of a promotion challenge at the start of the season and they’ve enjoyed a solid, if unspectacular start, remaining within touching distance of the top seven – in ninth place on goal difference. They’ve won six, drawn six and lost four of their 16 games, with their most recent outing ending in a 2-1 home defeat to Bromley. In fact, they’ve only won one of their last six games, a 4-0 thrashing of struggling AFC Fylde, in amongst draws with Dagenham and Solihull, plus defeats to Halifax and Ebbsfleet. The Bees are managed by Darren Currie, who took over in December 2018, guiding the club to a twelfth-place finish last season after briefly flirting with relegation. He ensured they avoided a second successive relegation after dropping out of the Football League in 2018.

The team really needs your support right now as they look to produce a reaction which will get them back to winning ways. Please come along if you can and cheer them on!

Woking Team News

Dowse will almost certainly make changes after the disappointment of Tuesday’s performance. He reverted to a 5-3-2 formation in the first-half with Ben Gerring, back from his three-match suspension, restored to the starting line-up. Toby Edser then dropped out of the midfield with Kane Ferdinand, Godfrey Poku and Shaun Donnellan forming a more defensive trio.

The Cards returned to 4-2-3-1 in the second-half with Dave Tarpey, Max Kretzschmar and Jamar Loza forming the attacking trio behind Ibrahim Meite. It appeared to be much more effective although Dowse will naturally be wary of going too attacking against strong opponents away from home. Paul Hodges will also be hoping for a first start of the season after another impactful appearance from the bench. Edser and Jake Hyde are the other options to come back into the squad if fit.

Barnet Team News

Against Bromley, Currie lined up with the experienced former Watford and Hartlepool stopper Scott Loach in goal; in defence was Cheye Alexander and Callum Reynolds, both previously with our local rivals Aldershot and part of the side which reached the National League play-offs in 2018, Portuguese centre-back Ricardo Santos, who was previously with Peterborough, and former Cardiff City prospect David Tutonda.

In midfield were three players Dowse will know well – Harry Taylor, who spent a month on loan with Woking last season, as well as Dan Sweeney and Wesley Fonguck, who both spent time on loan at Dowse’s Hampton & Richmond Borough side back in 2017. They were joined by club legend Mauro Vilhete, only 26, but already a part of the Bees’ setup for a decade. He’s played more than 200 games for the club since emerging from their academy in 2009 – scoring 19 goals in that time.

Up front was Josh Walker alongside Alfie Pavey, a recent addition from Dover Athletic, where he scored 11 goals in 37 games. He was amongst the top scorers in National League South in 2017/18 when he netted 26 times for Dartford.

Last Time Out

Barnet 2-1 Woking – National League (7th February 2015)

This was a close-fought encounter in what was a great season for both Barnet, promoted to League Two as champions, and Woking, who finished seventh in the National League under Garry Hill. In this one, the Cards went down to ten men mid-way through the first-half, when Joe McNerney was sent off and John Akinde dispatched the resulting penalty. An own goal from Joey Jones looked to have made the game safe but the visitors fought back and claimed a consolation through Yemi Odubade 10 minutes from time – setting up a nervy finish which the home side eventually escaped from unscathed.

On the Day

The ground can be found on Camrose Avenue; the postcode is HA8 6AG – a drive of just over an hour from the Laithwaite Community Stadium – although heavily traffic dependent. The nearest railway stations to The Hive are the London Underground stations at Canons Park, Queensbury and Edgware. The former can be found on the Jubilee Line and is a 5-minute walk away.

There is a supporters’ coach running for the game which leaves from the Laithwaite Community Stadium at 12.00pm. Please arrive by 11.45am. The price is £20 for adults and £15 for under-16s with a £5 discount for Cards’ Trust members. Those looking to attend should contact Adam Bowyer ( or call the club shop for more information.

Away fans are allocated the Legends Stand. Matchday ticket prices are £22 for adults, £14 for concessions and £5 for under-17s. Concessions are supporters aged 65 years and over and under the age of 21.

Next Up

The Cards are away for the third time in less than two weeks as our FA Cup campaign begins next Saturday. We’re taking on league rivals Ebbsfleet United who are currently managerless after sacking former Woking boss Garry Hill on Thursday.

Bees sting late on

Liam O'Sullivan
12:00am, Sat 12th Oct 2019
Barnet 2 Woking 2
Vanarama National League
12th October 2019

Woking’s trip to a drizzly north London saw them undeservedly get 3 points snatched away from them inside the 7th minute of stoppage time. A tireless Woking performance deserved nothing but a win, however the late Barnet equaliser will make the result feel more like a defeat for everyone involved at the club.

This was the Cards’ first visit to The Hive in over 4 years due to Barnet’s spell in the Football League, but the visitors’ performance showed they had no fear going into the game. Alan Dowson was determined to overturn the side’s disappointing form, hence making 4 changes to the starting line-up following their away defeat to Yeovil Town on Tuesday night. Goal scorer of Woking’s sensational consolation goal in that game, Ibrahim Meite, led the front line. Collier and Kretzschmar also came into the starting 11, whilst new signing from Salford City Mark Shelton made his debut starting in central midfield alongside Kane Ferdinand.

It was a lively start from Barnet, who begun the match with plenty of energy. 4 minutes in, and the first threatening chance of the game arose, when Josh Walker linked up well with Simeon Akinola inside the 18-yard box, presenting a wonderful opportunity for Walker. The forward was looking to score for a 4th consecutive game, but his low driven shot was brilliantly stopped by Craig Ross.

The Bees were keeping the ball well in the opening 10 minutes, but on one occasion in the 8th, their passing football almost cost them, when Meite’s high pressing led to Sweeney being dispossessed at the back. The striker had a one on one scenario where he undoubtedly should’ve scored, but instead his outside of the left foot effort fractionally went wide of the post.

Despite this scare, the home side were bombarding the back four with dangerous crosses. Woking’s centre backs Parry and Gerring were resilient nevertheless, and prevented any ball to be met by a Barnet head. In the 14th minute, Woking won a free kick on the left of the penalty area. Dave Tarpey put in a menacing cross deep into the box, and Gerring proved his aerial threat at both ends of the pitch and powerfully beat the defenders to head it into the right of the net. It was the Woking centre half’s first goal of the season, and gave the Cards’ an important goal advantage.

Ben Gerring heads home; pic: David Holmes

The opener shifted the games momentum, and bred confidence into the Woking players as well as the away supporters, who were in full voice encouraging their team to double their lead. As the half went on, the visitors grew more and more into the game and were in full control, dictating the tempo and winning every second ball.

Barnet’s casual nature almost led to another Woking goal in the 35th minute, when skipper Callum Reynolds was caught out by the hard-working Kane Ferdinand. He was almost rewarded with a goal if it wasn’t for the brave goalkeeping of Scott Loach, who crucially got to the ball before the midfielder. 5 minutes later, Loza drove into the box terrifically from the left flank, teeing up Kretzschmar whose promising effort was blocked well. The subsequent corner taken by Tarpey almost found the back of the net directly, but instead hit the crossbar.

Woking’s efforts to double their tally was evident as the half time whistle approached, with each player showing faultless work ethic. Max Kretzschmar had another chance to score on the stroke of half time, where he showed an excellent bit of trickery on the edge of the box before placing a shot towards the bottom left corner, only to be denied by the strong hand of Loach.

Half-time: Barnet 0 Woking 1

The second half begun fairly evenly, with neither team creating any clear-cut opportunities. Josh Casey, who was putting his body on the line for Woking in this game, went down with a head injury just 5 minutes into the second half. Fortunately, the skipper got back onto his feet a couple of minutes later. Moments after play resumed, Kretzschmar found himself in a dangerous area down the left-hand side. He skipped past defenders as though they weren’t there, getting himself in a dangerous position inside the box. The Woking number 10 picked out debutant Mark Shelton on the edge of the box, and he fired his shot first time into the bottom left corner, beating the helpless Loach. This second of the game was a fair reflection of the visitors’ performance, and would’ve been a special moment for the 22-year-old loanee.

Woking continued to be the sharper team following the 2nd goal, but a moment of brilliance from Mauro Vilhete in the 57th minute gave Barnet a glimpse of hope. A mid-section height cross from Sweeney towards the edge of the box didn’t look threatening enough to beat the faultless Woking defence, but Vilhete brilliantly capitalised on the cross and acrobatically volleyed it into the top left corner. This moment of magic from the Barnet fan favourite was certainly against the run of play and didn’t justify the home side’s performance.

Almost reminiscent of how the game’s momentum changed in the first half, once Barnet scored their first, their tails were up and confidence grew within the players. Darren Currie looked to bring on fresh legs and push for an equaliser, bringing on forward-minded players Ephron Mason-Clark and Alfie Pavey. Dowse made a change of his own, taking off goal scorer Mark Shelton, and replacing him with Shaun Donnellan.

Currie’s introduction of Pavey almost paid off instantly, when Vilhete did remarkably well to put in a wonderful cross from the byline, which found the head of the striker inside the 6-yard box but was somehow missed by the number 9. The manager thought it had gone in only to be dumbfounded as to how his striker missed the target from such close range. Barnet were whiskers away from equalising once again in the 74th minute, when other substitute Mason-Clark did exceptionally well from around 25 yards out, where he cut inside onto his favoured right foot, and struck a stinging shot towards the bottom right, only for it to rattle the post.

As expected, the home side were piling on the pressure and giving Woking plenty of work to do at the back. Despite this, the Cards were limiting Barnet from creating any clear-cut opportunities, and were playing out with calmness and confidence. The work rate from each Woking player throughout the game was admirable and merited an away victory.

Controversially, 6 minutes were added on by fourth official Thomas Ratherham to the despair of the Woking coaches, players and supporters. The courage and resilience shown by the visitors was exceptional nonetheless, and each player continued to give 100% defensively. 7 minutes into stoppage time – past the 6 added on – a teasing cross from the left sideline found itself in a promising area inside the 18-yard box. The player introduced from the bench by Darren Currie, Mason-Clark, came up with the goods in the last chance of the game. He leapt above the exhausted Woking defence, and almost mistimed his header, but it ended up bouncing over Craig Ross almost in slow motion, to snatch a point at the death. This was a very cruel goal for Woking to concede, and the timing of the equaliser will certainly be questioned by the Cards.

This draw extends Woking’s run without a win to 9 games. In spite of this dreary reading, the determination and fight shown by Woking in this game should give the Cards plenty of confidence moving forward, as it was a reminder of the quality and spirit they possess.

Woking will look to repeat last season’s cup run next Saturday, as they travel to east London to face a struggling Ebbsfleet United in the 4th qualifying round of the FA Cup.

Woking: 13 Craig Ross, 3 Josh Casey ©, 4 Manny Parry, 5 Ben Gerring, 7 Dave Tarpey, 8 Kane Ferdinand, 10 Max Kretzschmar (2 Jack Cook 92’), 12 Nathan Collier, 18 Ibrahim Meite, 19 Mark Shelton (16 Shaun Donnellan 67’), 22 Jamar Loza (20 Toby Edser 81’)

Unused subs: 1 Sam Howes, 11 Paul Hodges

Goals: Gerring 14’, Shelton 53’

Bookings: Shelton 46’, Kretzschmar 76’, Edser 97’

Barnet 1 Scott Loach, 2 Cheye Alexander, 4 Callum Reynolds ©, 5 Ricardo Santos, 8 Charlee Adams (21 Medy Elito 78’), 14 Simeon Akinola (9 Alfie Pavey 66’), 16 Harry Taylor, 20 Mauro Vilhete, 22 Josh Walker, 23 David Tutonda (27 Ephron Mason-Clark 61’), 26 Dan Sweeney

Unused subs: 24 Aymen Azaze, 18 Wesley Fonguck

Goals: Vilhete 57’, Mason-Clark 97’

Bookings: Sweeney 27’

Referee: Joe Hull

Attendance: 1,651 (318 away)

My Man of the Match: Josh Casey – led by example today, battling hard from start to finish and hardly putting a foot wrong all game.
1Scott Loach
2Cheye Alexander
23David Tutonda ('62)
4Callum Reynolds
5Ricardo Santos
26Dan Sweeney
8Charlee Adams ('79)
16Harry Taylor
20Mauro Vilhete
14Simeon Akinola ('67)
22Josh Walker
24Aymen Azaze
18Wesley Fonguck
21Medy Elito ('79)
27Ephron Mason-Clark ('62)
9Alfie Pavey ('67)
13Craig Ross
12Nathan Collier
3Josh Casey
4Manny Parry
5Ben Gerring
8Kane Ferdinand
19Mark Shelton ('67)
10Max Kretzschmar ('90)
22Jamar Loza ('82)
7Dave Tarpey
18Ibrahim Meite
1Sam Howes
2Jack Cook ('90)
16Shaun Donnellan ('67)
11Paul Hodges
20Toby Edser ('82)

Barnet 2 - 2 Woking | Short Highlights

Barnet 2 - 2 Woking | Dowse Interview

Barnet 2 - 2 Woking | Ben Gerring Interview

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