Martin Allen was pleased with Barnet’s entertaining 1-1 draw against York City and it could have been more, according to the Bees manager.
Lewis Alessandra opened the scoring for the Minstermen in the first half before John Akinde turned in James Pearson’s fine cross to earn a point for the visitors.
In the circumstances, Allen saw it as a point gained for his side, saying, “Every point the team picks up, in my mind, is a good point.
“The players are disappointed only to draw and maybe are tinged with disappointment that we didn’t play to the levels we have been in other games.
“York fought like tigers, but we weathered the storm and showed a lot of character. I’m always pleased with a point.”
City had lost their previous five coming into the game but showed no signs of the lack of confidence that has plagued their play in recent months.
Jake Hyde’s off-balance shot was deflected out for a corner, from which stand-in skipper Dave Winfield rose highest and nodded narrowly wide.
Femi Ilesanmi whipped over a cross and Luke Summerfield very nearly gave the home side the lead with a low shot that went wide of Jamie Stephens’ right hand post.
York went one up after 20 minutes when former Barnet forward Jake Hyde’s low strike cannoned off the post and back in to play, where debutant Lewis Alessandra was on hand to bury the rebound.
Allen felt his team started the game poorly but expected the hosts to come out firing as they did, saying, “I thought we looked a bit lacklustre in the first half and weren’t up to the speed that we’ve been at.
“When they’re fighting for their lives like they were, with new signings coming in, they were always going to come out and fight with that extra bit of spirit in front of their own crowd, knowing what an important game it was for their club today” he continued.
“Fair play to them, they had a good go but we weathered the storm.”
Luke Gambin begun to take the game to York’s defenders, cutting in from the right hand side and curling an unconvincing effort wide from 16 yards out.
John Akinde, whose early shot had been cleared off the line by Luke Hendrie, took a gamble on James Pearson at the near post and the right back whipped in a sumptuous delivery for Akinde to fire home his 14th of the campaign.
Just like the first half, York came out all guns blazing and should really have taken the lead after the break. A long ball flummoxed all four of Barnet’s defenders and sent Alessandra through one-on-one, only for Stephens to save with his feet.
Elliott Johnson hooked his right leg around Alessandra as he made for the penalty area and conceded a free-kick right on the edge of the box, which could easily have been a spot-kick. Danny Galbraith’s subsequent shot skimmed the bar.
As the game opened up further, Akinde headed Johnson’s left-wing cross wide and Andy Yiadom couldn’t connect with substitute Fumnaya Shomotun’s centre.
Akinde then had the ball in the net with five minutes to go after bringing down Gambin’s ball, though his effort was rightly chalked off for offside.
In the second half, Allen made three positive substitutions to bring on Shomotun, Mauro Vilhete and Shaun Batt.
The Bees boss, who missed Tuesday’s win at Newport with flu, believed his team could have won the game despite York’s gutsy display, saying, “In the second half I thought we played much better and had opportunities where perhaps we could have won the game.
“We put players on there to win the game, not to see it out,” Allen added.
“The gaps opened up near the end but we weren’t able to be clinical enough to actually make one of those good passing movements pay with a goal.”
Barnet have enjoyed some memorable away days in recent weeks, although the only teams in League Two with worse records on the road are Hartlepool and Saturday’s opponents York.
Allen dedicated the result to Bees fan Chris East, who died on his way to the Hive for the Hartlepool game aged just 19.
“That point today was for our special supporter Chris, who we all sadly miss. That was for him."