The Bees take a break from league action as attentions turn back to the FA Cup this weekend. After successfully qualifying for the First Round last month, John Still’s men now welcome League One outfit Bristol Rovers to The Hive on Sunday.
Barnet go into tomorrow’s game off the back of a 2-0 home league defeat to Maidstone United last weekend. Blair Turgott opened the scoring just shy of the half-hour mark before substitute Gold Omotayo made sure of the three points with 10 minutes to go.
The last time these two sides met was back in January 2016 with Barnet coming out on top in the League Two fixture.
Gavin Hoyte found the bottom corner on five minutes to net the only goal of the game as The Bees came out on top, winning 1-0.
However, Martin Allen’s side were reduced to 10 men just before the hour mark after Andy Yiadom was shown a straight red after a foul on Stuart Sinclair.
Manager: Darrell Clarke
Darrell Clarke was appointed Bristol Rovers boss back in 2014 after a spell as assistant manager. Since taking over at the helm, he guided the side to Conference promotion alongside Barnet in his first full season in charge, winning the play-offs. He then achieved similar glory the year after, clinching back-to-back promotions after finishing third in League Two.
Before Rovers, Clarke was manager at Salisbury City from 2010 to 2013. As player-manager, he was part of the side who achieved Southern League play-off glory in his debut season. He also guided the club to the Third Round of the FA Cup for the first time in their history before bowing out after winning the Conference South play-off final.
As a player, he made over 100 appearances for Mansfield Town, Hartlepool and Salisbury. Whilst at The Pools, he was sent out on loan to Stockport, Port Vale and Rochdale respectively.
One to Watch: Tom Nichols
It’s safe to say, Tom Nichols has endured a shaky spell since joining Bristol Rovers in 2017.
The 25-year-old is a proven goal scorer in the Football League, finding himself on the score sheet multiple times at former clubs Exeter and Peterborough.
However, he’s found goals hard to come by since joining Rovers but he will be hoping to use tomorrow’s FA Cup tie to turn a corner.
Last Season’s FA Cup Form:
Clarke’s men will be hoping they won’t endure a repeat of last season’s FA Cup form when they travel to North London tomorrow.
Rovers were eliminated in the First Round after falling to a 4-2 defeat away at League Two side Notts County.
The visitors went 2-0 up after 12 minutes thanks to goals from Liam Sercombe and Stuart Sinclair. However, The Magpies hit back after Ryan Yates bagged twice in two minutes to keep their FA Cup hopes alive. Jon Stead turned the game on it’s head just shy of the hour mark before Jorge Grant’s stoppage time strike secured their progression to Round Two.
Last season marked Rovers’ fourth season on the bounce where they have been knocked out at the first hurdle.
Sitting 20th in League One with 17 points to their name, Rovers are treading water above the relegation zone.
The Pirates, who sit only two points above the drop zone, have two wins under their belt in their last five games. A 1-0 away defeat to Burton Albion was quickly followed up by a goalless draw at home to Oxford United a week later. They returned to winning ways in their next game, beating Wimbledon 2-0 but their next outing saw them lose 1-0 to Barnsley. However, they go into tomorrow’s game in high spirits after recording their biggest win of the season, beating Blackpool 3-0.
Clarke’s side will be looking to take the highs of their previous game in to the cup fixture tomorrow and book their place in Round Two for the first time since 2013.
Last 5 games: LDWLW
Manager JohnStill left Barnet to become assistant manager at Bristol Rovers in 2002 and spent a season at the Memorial Stadium
Pirates midfielder Ed Upson spent a month on loan at Barnet in 2010, netting one goal in nine games.