Notts County 2-0 Barnet, National League Play-Off Semi-Final: report, ratings and verdict


Notts County 4-4-2



Barnet 3-5-2

Half Time: 1 - 0 Meadow Lane ( Attendance: NA )
1 min

Barnet’s hopes of Football League promotion ended with a 2-0 defeat to Notts County in their National League Play-Off semi-final at Meadow Lane.

In a first-half played out amidst torrential rain, Barnet fell behind eight minutes before the interval when Jim O’Brien’s excellent cross was headed in by Kristian Dennis.

The home side should have made it two moments later but Callum Roberts sent his effort wide with only Scott Loach to beat in the Barnet goal.

Having failed to test County goalkeeper Sam Slocombe, Barnet did start the second period well with Ephron Mason-Clark forcing a good save from the custodian with an effort from distance.

However, Notts County were able to put the game to bed on the hour mark as Loach, after twice denying Dennis, could do nothing about a moment of Roberts’ individual brilliance.

Former Newcastle academy graduate Roberts showed excellent close control to beat two Barnet defenders inside the penalty area before side-footing beyond the Bees keeper.

Barnet boss Darren Currie responded by throwing on all his strikers but other than a late Alfie Pavey header, Notts County were able to hold out to comfortably book their place at Wembley.

Key Points

Check out all the key talking points and reaction from London Football Scene below…

Key Moment

Callum Roberts’ individual brilliance for County’s second goal gave Barnet too much of a mountain to climb.

Moan of the Match

As great as Jim O’Brien was, Mauro Vilhete allowed him too much time and space to get the cross in for the opening goal.

Talking Point

The absence of key players eventually caught up with Barnet – the Bees can’t lose Callum Reynolds, Dan Sweeney, Daniel Sparkes and Cheye Alexander and still expect to win back to back games.

Man of the Match

Jim O’Brien – a surprised midfield starter for County in place of the more creative Enzio Boldewijn but it paid off with a fantastically industrious performance.

Tweet of the Match

Referee Watch

Samuel Barrott (West Riding) – a good display from the referee in difficult conditions, allowing the game to flow while getting all the major decisions correct.


Driving rain in the first-half made the game a difficult spectacle but Notts County did not suffer for the lack of home fans.


It was one match too many for Barnet as a combination of a weakened squad and tired legs were unable to compete with a fresher Notts County.

Line Ups

Notts County 4-4-2

Slocombe; Brindley, Lacey, Turner, Bagan; Roberts (Thomas, 86), Doyle, Rose, O’Brien; Wootton, Dennis (Boldewijn, 74)

Subs not used:

McDonnell, Rawlinson, Kelly-Evans, Crawford



Barnet 3-5-2

Loach; Taylor, Santos, Johnson; Vilhete, Dunne, Adams, Mason-Clark, Tutonda (Coulthirst, 71); McCallum, Walker (Akinola, 62 (Pavey, 79))

Subs not used:

Matrevics, McBurnie, Edwards

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