Barnet’s promotion hopes are starting to fade. It is now five defeats in their last six games in the Skrill Premier. Every loss becomes more damaging – the latest came at The Hive against Aldershot Town.
It was hoped the departure of Edgar Davids would signal a change in fortunes. Paul Fairclough was in charge for Barnet but watched the Bees produce a display of little quality.
Goals from Jordan Roberts, Bradley Bubb and Mark Molesley were what Aldershot deserved for a tireless display.
Mauro Vilhete netted for Barnet. It was a sumptuous strike from 25 yards but ultimately counted for nothing.
Fairclough said last week the Bees must look to win every one of their remaining home matches.
He made three changes to the side which was beaten at Chester. In came Jordan Brown, Vilhete and Luke Gambin for Elliot Johnson, Luisma Villa and Kieran Cadogan.
A new manager will inevitably have different ideas of how to set up his side. Conceding in the third minute probably isn’t planned for.
The opener was bizarre. Roberts worked his way to the touchline and scooped a cross to the back post. Bees goalkeeper Nick Jupp watched the ball drift over his head and into the far corner. The travelling Shots fans took a second to realise their side had gone ahead.
The visitors looked sharper and created two further chances. Joe Oastler saw a header cleared by Jack Saville and Brett Williams shot wide from 18 yards.
A wayward strike from Gambin was all Barnet had to show for their efforts while Bubb almost scored a second for Aldershot as a Mark Byrne clearance cannoned off the striker and just missed the post.
Barnet struggled to maintain possession across the pitch as the Shots pressed well but they eased off late in the half and allowed the Bees more time on the ball.
That proved costly as Barnet grabbed an equaliser just before the interval. The ball dropped to Vilhete 25 yards out and the diminutive winger unleashed a tremendous strike past Glen Morris.
The two sides went into the interval level and Fairclough made a change as Gambin was replaced by Harry Crawford. Barnet switched to two orthodox strikers up front.
Jake Hyde sent a volley wide just after the restart but Barnet repeated their first half mistake and conceded three minutes after the kick off.
On this occasion it was a poor goal to concede. A long pass forward found Bubb, he advanced into the penalty area and calmly slotted past Jupp.
Seven minutes later and the Shots had a third. Molesley collected the ball 20 yards out and his rasping drive was past Jupp before the Barnet keeper completed his dive.
The Bees seemed to lack the belief they could rescue anything from the game and Aldershot continued to create chances.
Jayden Gibbs, brother of Arsenal defender Kieran, almost added a third as his free kick was deflected over and Jupp did brilliantly to deny substitute Josh Scott.
The Bees had offered very little in attack during the second period. Hyde saw a shot easily saved and Jon Nurse was then denied by Morris.
Aldershot eased off as the game drew to a close. Hyde saw a late acrobatic volley saved and then Crawford was denied as the heavens opened - it reflected the mood amongst Barnet supporters.
If the Bees are to have any chance of scraping into the play-offs their form must improve. They take on Southport at The Hive on Saturday. A win is a must.
Barnet: Jupp, Yiadom, Saville (Acheampong 60), Stephens, Brown (Nurse 66); Vilhete, Byrne, Weston, Gambin (Crawford 45); Marsh-Brown, Hyde.
Barnet substitutes: Barnes, Casabella.
Aldershot Town: Morris, Gibbs, Oastler, Partington, Barker; Molesley (Mekki 68), Stanley, Rowlands (Oyeleke 72), Roberts; Bubb (Scott 64), Williams.
Aldershot Town substitutes: Webster, Williams.
Attendance: 1,387 (323).