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Match Previews

Preview: Barnet v Pools

4 March 2016

We bring you everything you need to know ahead of Saturday's first-ever visit to The Hive to face Barnet.

Barnet v Hartlepool United
Sky Bet League Two
Saturday 5th March 2016
Kick-off: 3pm

The Story So Far
Barnet returned to the Football League during the summer after winning the Conference title, ending a two-year exile in non-league.

Martin Allen’s men have adapted well to life back in the League and have enjoyed a good run recently which has seen them lose just once in their last eight outings.

The Hive has been a happy home for Barnet this season and their home form is among the best in the division – only Northampton Town have won more times on home soil this term.

They currently lie fifteenth in the table and with safety in the division all but assured, The Bees may even fancy their chances of eating up the ten-point gap and making a late dash for the play-offs.

One To Watch
John Akinde is The Bees’ top scorer this term having helped himself to thirteen goals in all competitions, including the equaliser in their 1-1 draw at Victoria Park in October.

The former Bristol City, Crawley Town and Portsmouth front man joined Barnet during the summer of 2014 following a season with Alfreton.

Akinde has been in good form recently, finding the net twice in the last three games – a winner against former club Pompey and a last-minute leveller in a 2-2 draw at Accrington.

Last Meeting
Tuesday 20th October 2015
Hartlepool United 1 (Oates 7)
Barnet 1 (Akinde 64)

Hartlepool United: Carson, Hendrie, Okuonghae, Harrison, Jones, Carroll (Banton 76), Walker (Woods 72), Featherstone, Oates, Bingham, Paynter.
Subs not used: Bartlett, Bates, Duckworth, Oyenuga, Fenwick.

Barnet: Stephens, Hoyte, Johnson, Dembele, N’Gala, Yiadom, Togwell, Champion (Weston 61), Clarke (Gambin 64), Akinde (Nelson 89), Gash.
Subs not used: McKenzie, Muggleton, Stevens, McLean.

Head To Head
October’s 1-1 draw at Victoria Park was the first time these clubs had met since the 2006/07 campaign and there have only been 19 encounters in total over the years.

Despite Pools winning promotion that season, Barnet still enjoyed a league double – indeed their 2-1 win at Underhill in April 2007 ended our Club record 23-game unbeaten league run.

Overall, the record between the clubs is very equal though with both winning seven times and five games ending all-square since the first encounter in 1993.

Team News
Craig Hignett will hope to have Matthew Bates available after a back injury and new signing Rob Jones will also come in to contention for a debut after joining the Club on Thursday.

Darren Handley will take charge of his second Pools game in little over a month this weekend when he’s the man in the middle for our trip to Barnet.

The official was also on the whistle when we hosted Exeter City at the end of January and Saturday will be the third time this season he’s refereed the Club after overseeing our defeat to Bristol Rovers in September.

Handley saw us enjoy happier times towards the end of last term when he was the referee for our important 1-0 win over Mansfield Town at The Vic.

Ticket Information
Pools fans will be able to buy their tickets from the Away Ticket Office at Barnet on the day of the game.

Click here for full ticket information for this fixture.

Live Commentary
Fans all over the world will be able to listen to full live online commentary by joining Mark Simpson on Pools PlayerHD from 2.50pm on Saturday.

Click here now for more information on joining Pools PlayerHD in time to listen-in.

Barnet have been installed as even money favourites for three points on Saturday, while you can back Pools at odds of 14/5 and a draw is priced at 12/5 with our friends at Sky Bet.

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