Learn more about Barnet F.C.
|Full name||Barnet Football Club|
|Manager||Image:Flag of England (bordered).svg Paul Fairclough|
|League||Football League Two|
|2005-06||League Two, 18th|
Barnet Football Club are an English football team from High Barnet in the London Borough of Barnet, Greater London. They currently play in Coca Cola Football League Two. In March 2004 they were in one of the play off positions, but failed to gain promotion to League Two, the lowest flight of the Football League. In the 2004-05 season they won the Conference Championship, to return to the Football League after an absence of four years. Before that they had been Football League members for ten years.
Barnet's most eventful season was the 1992-93 season. They were on the verge of expulsion for failing to pay their players' wages as well as failing to meet a deadline for a £50,000 fine. In spite of these problems, Barnet won promotion to Division Two. But the Bees were unable to sustain themselves at this level and went down after one season with just five wins all season.
 Club history
 Early years (1888-1901)
The first instance of Barnet FC existed in 1888 when a team previously known as Woodville FC (1882-5) and then as New Barnet FC (1885-8) started playing at the Queens Road ground in High Barnet. Barnet played in the North London League, North Middlesex League, and the London Leagues. Despite their success the original club was disbanded in 1901.
 Barnet Avenue & Barnet Alston (1901-1919)
Two local clubs, Barnet Avenue FC (formed 1890) and Alston Works AFC (formed 1901) continued to attract support. Barnet Avenue renamed themselves Barnet FC in 1904 and as staunch believers in the amateur game they shunned the London Football Authority in favour of the Amateur Football Association.
Alston Works AFC, later Barnet Alston FC, became champions of the London League in 1906/7. In 1907 they moved to the clubs current ground at Underhill, Barnet Lane. Their first match was a 1-0 win over Crystal Palace FC on September 14th 1907. After merging with the Avenue team in 1912 they spearheaded the new Athenian League as Barnet and Alston FC. After the First World War in 1919 they became the third instance of Barnet FC. This team continues today.
 The Athenian League years (1912-1965)
For over 50 years Barnet FC competed in the Athenian League. Inaugural members in 1912/13 they were league champions no fewer than seven times between 1919-1965 before turning professional in 1965.
During the 1920's Barnet consolidated their amateur status in the Athenian League under team secretary Tom Goss. He arranged for junior players from Tottenham Hotspurs to play for the club including Taffy O'Callaghan, Willie Evans and Bill Whatley, all of whom eventually became internationals, between them gaining 17 Welsh caps.
The 1930/1 season saw Barnet gain their first Athenian League Championship to be repeated again the following season. Included in the team at that time were George Hughes and Fred Garrett, full backs; Reg Wright (England), centre-half; and Arthur Morris, Jack Richardson and a Barnet and England legend Lester Finch in the forward line.
In the two seasons after World War II, Barnet won the F.A. Amateur Cup (beating Bishop Auckland 3-2), the Athenian League Championship twice, and the London Senior Cup. The side included five internationals in Ted Bunker, George Wheeler, Dennis Kelleher, Ron Phipps and Lester Finch. In the 1958/9 season, their young team coached by George Wheeler, reached the F.A. Amateur Cup final for the third time, but were beaten 3-2 by Crook Town.
 Promotion to the league (1991)
Barnet F.C joined the Fourth Division of the Football League on winning the GM Vauxhall Conference championship in 1991. Their early reputation was of playing fast, attacking football, a reputation only enhanced by their first ever league match (which they lost 4-7 to Crewe Alexandra), and a 5-5 draw to Brentford in the league cup in their next match. In their first season of league football the club reached the promotion playoffs but lost to Blackpool in the semi finals.
 Financial nightmare and promotion (1992-1996)
The 1992-93 season saw controversy at Underhill as Barnet chairman Stan Flashman regarding club accounts and players' wages, resulting in some nationwide back page headlines. In spite of this, Barnet finished third in the new Division Three and secured the final automatic promotion spot. Manager Barry Fry, however, left Barnet with a handful of games remaining and was replaced by his assistant Edwin Stein, who himself then left to join Fry in the summer at Southend United. Goalkeeper Gary Phillips took over as manager during a difficult summer in which Barnet marginally survived a vote of expulsion by a Football League EGM, and lost the vast majority of their promotion winning side in a tribunal which nullified the players' contracts. Phillips cobbled together a squad from the few remaining player and free transfers. In January 1994 Phillips was assisted by former England goalkeeper Ray Clemence, but were still relegated from Division Two. In August 1994 Ray Clemence became sole manager for two seasons, finishing 9th and 11th in Division Three. Then at the start of the 1996/7 season Ray Clemence left to become England goalkeeping coach leaving Terry Bullivant in charge.
 Relegation (1996-2001)
Barnet's first season in Division Two ended in relegation and Clemence left in 1996 to be replaced by Alan Mullery (after a brief caretaker stint by Terry Bullivant and Terry Gibson). During the years up to 2000 Barnet established themselves in the basement division reaching two playoff semi-finals under new manager John Still, losing to Colchester United and Peterborough United respectively. But the club lost its league status in 2001 after ten years following a season which had seen Still resign and briefly be replaced by Tony Cottee before Still was reinstated. Still resigned again shortly after Barnet's return to the Conference and was replaced by Peter Shreeves.
 Life in the Conference (2001-2005)
Shreeves left after one year to be replaced by Martin Allen, who in turn left the club in March 2004 (to take charge at Brentford). Former Stevenage Borough manager Paul Fairclough replaced Allen for the remainder of the 2003-04 season, including the play-off matches against Shrewsbury Town, who defeated the Bees on penalties. The following season, 2004-05 , with Fairclough at the helm, the Bees went one better than the previous season and were crowned Champions of the Nationwide Conference and regained their football league status.
 League comeback (2006-)
The 2005-06 season started brightly, with Barnet leading League two after nine games, but results started to slide soon after. A timely cash injection was secured with a Carling Cup trip to Manchester United in October. 6,000 fans made the trip up to the Theatre of Dreams. The new year saw a further slump in form for Barnet, with only 1 win in the first 12 games of 2006. Relegation was always a possibility but good end of season form kept the Bees up. 3 home wins and a dramatic 2-1 victory at already relegated Rushden and Diamonds - Barnet's first away win since August - left Barnet finishing the season 5 places and 5 points above the relegation zone, yet only 12 points out of the playoffs.
 Key players
Affectionately known by fans as The Bees, Barnet play in an amber shirt with black sleeves. Their top striker is Giuliano Grazioli, who has also had two spells at Peterborough United. Previous players have included international representatives Ken Charlery (Saint Lucia), Dougie Freedman (Scotland), Maik Taylor (Northern Ireland) and, towards the end of his career, Jimmy Greaves (England). Other past players who have proceeded to ply their trade in the FA Premier League include Andy Clarke (with Wimbledon), Linvoy Primus (with Portsmouth) and Marlon King with Watford. Popular goalkeeper Lee Harrison served the club for seven years from 1996 to 2003, and was Player of the Year for three consecutive seasons, and in July 2006 has returned to the club from Peterborough United as player/coach.
- The long standing BBC Football commentator John Motson is a supporter, or at least has strong ties with the club having either grown up nearby and/or worked for a local paper in his early days as a journalist. He seems to mention Barnet at every possible moment, even when commentating on England World Cup matches.
- A frequent highlight of Barnet's pre-season programme is a traditional friendly against top north London side Arsenal. Arsenal's training ground is at Shenley, Hertfordshire, just to the northwest of Barnet and their reserve team plays its home games at Underhill.
- In 1947 the club played Sing Tao Sports Club of Hong Kong at Underhill. They were the first Chinese club to ever play in the United Kingdom. They gave an excellent exhibition of football and were unlucky to lose 5-3.
- In October 1946, the first live televised football match was broadcast by the BBC from Underhill. Twenty minutes of the game against Wealdstone were televised in the first half and thirty five minutes of the second half before it became too dark.
 Club vs. Council
Despite success on the pitch, off it Barnet FC have struggled to improve their ground. A plan to move to Copthall Stadium in Mill Hill was blocked by a Government Planning Inspector. There has always been problems with the ground, Underhill, which is in need of modernisation. A controversial sale of the ground's freehold in 2002 to the Club by the London Borough of Barnet has failed to produce any changes to the stadium . Meanwhile, the council have publicly said they will do what they can to help the club but this help has never materialised. Attempts by the club to sort out the ground issue, either by making improvements to the current site or by finding a site elsewhere in the borough, have so far failed, The Keep Barnet Alive movement has been central to fighting Barnet FC's corner on this issue.
 Current Squad - 2006/07
 Out on loan
- North Middlesex League division II, runners-up 1895
- North Middlesex League division I, runners-up 1896
- North Middlesex League premier division, champions 1897, Barnet Avenue FC, runners-up 1900
- London League division II, champions 1898
- North Middlesex League premier division (Northern), Barnet FC (Avenue), champions 1904,
- London League, Barnet Alston Works AFC, champions 1907
- Chiswick League, Barnet FC (Avenue), Champions 1908
- Middlesex County Amateur League (Premier), Barnet FC (Avenue), champions 1911
- Athenian League champions 1931, 1932, 1947, 1948, 1959, 1964, 1965; runners-up 1938, 1960, 1962, 1963
- F.A. Amateur Cup winners 1946; runners-up 1948, 1959
- London Senior Cup winners 1938, 1941, 1947; runners-up 1963
- London Charity Cup winners 1947, 1960, joint 1963
- Herts Charity Cup winners 1908, 1912, 1914, 1920, 1927, 1928, 1930, 1932, 1933,1934, 1935, 1936, 1937, 1938, 1943, 1945, 1946, 1947, 1949, 1952, 1953,1960, 1962, 1964, 1965; runners-up 1951, 1954
- Herts Charity Shield winners 1930, 1931
- Middlesex Senior Cup winners 1932, 1933
- Middlesex Charity Cup winners 1925, 1927
- Herts & Middlesex League Cup winners 1945
- Channel Islands Victory Cup winners 1939, 1947
- John Guin Cup, Luxembourg winners 1962
- Will Mather Cup winners 1947
- Alloway Bros Memorial Trophy winners 1960
- Westminster Hostpital Cup winners 1964
- Southern League Division 1 champions 1966
- Southern League Cup Winners 1972; runners-up 1967
- Southern League Division 1 (South) champions 1977
- Football League Division Four promotion 1993
- Football Conference champions 1991, 2005; runners-up 1987, 1988, 1990.
- FA Trophy runners-up 1972
- Clubcall Cup/Bob Lord Trophy winners 1989; runners-up 1984
- Micky Mays Memorial Trophy winners 1978, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1984, 1985
- F.A. Cup 3rd round 1965, 1971, 1973, 1982
 Club Records
- Record Attendance: 11,026 v Wycombe Wanderers. FA Amateur Cup 4th rd. 1951-52
- Record League Victory: 7-0 v Blackpool, Division Three, 11 November 2000
- Record League Defeat: 1-9 v Peterborough United, Division Three, 5 September 1998
- Most League Goals in Total: Arthur Morris, 400, 1927-34
- Most League Appearances: Les Eason, 648, 1965-74,1977-78
- Transfer Record (Received): £800,000 from Crystal Palace for Dougie Freedman
- Transfer Record (Paid): £130,000 to Peterborough United for Greg Heald
 Record Attendances
- 11,026 Wycombe Wanderers, Underhill, Amateur Cup (2-0), 1951/52
- 10,919 Queens Park Rangers, Underhill, F.A. Cup 3r (0-3), 1972/73
- 10,861 Preston North End, Underhill, F.A. Cup 3r (2-3), 1964/65
- 10,841 Bromley, Underhill, Amateur Cup r4 (0-2), 1950/51
- 60,000 Crook Town, Wembley Stadium Amateur Cup Final (2-3), 1958/59
- 59,605 Leytonstone, Stamford Bridge Amateur Cup Final (0-1), 1947/48
- 53,832 Bishop Auckland, Stamford Bridge Amateur Cup Final (3-2), 1945/46
- 43,673 Manchester United, Old Trafford League Cup 3r (1-4), 2005/06
- 27,000 Walthamstow Avenue, White Hart Lane Amateur Cup Semi Final replay (2-0), 1958/59
- 26,286 Boldmere St Michael, Highbury Amateur Cup Semi Final (2-0), 1947/48
- 24,000 Stafford Rangers, Wembley Stadium Trophy Final (0-3), 1971/72
- 23,200 Chelsea, Stamford Bridge F.A. Cup r3 (0-0), 1993/94
- 20,000 Leyton, Highbury London Senior Final (4-0), 1937/38
- 20,000 Leytonstone, Griffin Park Amateur Cup Semi Final (1-2aet), 1946/47
- 20,000 Kingstonian, Griffin Park London Senior Final (2-0), 1946/47
- 16,209 Chelsea, Stamford Bridge F.A. Cup 3r (0-3), 1993/94
- 16,074 Cardiff City, Ninian Park DIV 3 (1-1), 1992/93
- 15,884 Brighton & Hove Albion, Goldstone Ground F.A. Cup r3 (1-3), 1981/82
- 15,296 Wolverhampton Wanderers, Molineux League Cup r1 (0-5), 1998/99
- 15,264 West Ham United, Upton Park League Cup 2r (0-1), 1996/97
- 15,000 Leytonstone, Newbury Park Ilford London Senior Cup Semi Final (1-2), 1947/48
- 15,000 Marine, at Champion Hill, Dulwich Hamlet Amateur Cup Semi Final (1-0), 1945/46 `
- 13,874 Brighton & Hove Albion, Goldstone Ground F.A. Cup r1 (0-3), 1926/27
- 13,626 Queens Park Rangers, Loftus Road F.A. Cup r3 (0-0), 1972/73
- 12,038 Burnley, Turf Moor DIV 4 (0-3), 1991/92
- Paul Fairclough, 30-03-2004 to present
- Hendon/Maddix, 27-03-2004, caretaker player/managers 1 game
- Whitbread/Doyle, 20-03-2004, caretaker managers 1 game
- Martin Allen, 24-03-2003 to 17-03-2004, resigned, went to Brentford F.C.
- Peter Shreeves, 26-02-2002 to 24-03-2003, resigned
- John Still, 16-03-2001 to 22-02-2002, resigned
- Tony Cottee, 01-11-2000 to 16-03-2001, Player/Manager, left mutual agreement with chairman
- John Still, 30-06-1997 to 01-11-2000, became Director of Football
- Terry Bullivant, 02-04-1997 to 30-06-1997, resigned, went to Reading F.C.
- Alan Mullery, 13-10-1996 to 02-04-1997, became Director of Football
- Terry Gibson, 12-10-1996 to 16-10-1996, caretaker player/manager 2 games
- Terry Bullivant, 24-08-1996 to 12-10-1996, resigned
- Ray Clemence, 31-07-1994 to 24-08-1996, took England coaching role
- Clemence/Phillips, 19-01-1994 to 31-07-1994, Joint management team
- Gary Phillips, 01-08-1993 to 19-01-1994, joined by Clemence Jan 1994. Resigned.
- Edwin Stein, 01-04-1993 to 30-06-1993, caretaker for 8 league games end 1993/4
- Barry Fry, 01-08-1986 to 31-03-1993, resigned, went to Southend United F.C.
- Don MacAllister, 28-12-1985 to 01-08-1986, resigned
- Roger Thompson, 17-01-1985 to 21-12-1985, resigned
- Barry Fry, 1979 to 12-01-1985, resigned, went to Maidstone United F.C.
- Billy Meadows
- Gordon Ferry (player/manager)
- Gerry Ward
- Tommy Coleman
- Dexter Adams
- George Wheeler (coach)
- Lester Finch (coach)
- Before Dexter Adams the side was decided by a selection committee
 Noteworthy former players
- Junior Agogo, Nottingham Forest
- Gary Bull, Birmingham City
- Ken Charlery, Saint Lucia
- Andy Clarke,
- Ray Clemence, England
- Tony Cottee, West Ham United and Everton
- Darren Currie, Ipswich Town
- Dougie Freedman, Crystal Palace
- Terry Gibson, Coventry City
- Jimmy Greaves, England
- Marlon King, Watford F.C.
- Scott McGleish, Northampton Town
- Alan Pardew, West Ham United F.C. (Manager)
- Linvoy Primus, Portsmouth
- Brian Stein, Luton Town
- Maik Taylor, Birmingham City
 External links
- Barnet F.C. on BBC Sport:
- Vital Barnet
- Official Barnet Website
- Barnet Football Club Supporters Association
- Barnet Football History Website
- This Is Bees
- Keep Barnet Alive Website
- Barnet Kits from the Past
|Football League Two, 2006-2007|
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