Barnet’s bid for the Skrill Premier play-offs is stuttering. It’s back-to-back defeats for the Bees after they were beaten 1-0 by Gateshead at The Hive.
A 70th minute goal from Jamie Chandler settled the contest. The midfielder arrived in the area and headed a floated cross from John Oster into the net.
The concern for the Bees supporters will be the lack of chances created without top scorer Jake Hyde.
After last week’s 3-1 home loss against Woking, there were three changes to the Barnet side. Valentin Gjokaj, Mark Byrne and Elliot Johnson were replaced in starting XI by Kieran Cadogan, Mauro Vilhete and Jack Saville.
The first half was instantly forgettable and there was little for the fans to get excited about.
The pace of the contest resembled a pre-season game and few chances were created.
Keanu Marsh-Brown flashed a shot wide, Vilhete had an effort easily saved and then Curtis Weston missed the target with a strike from distance.
Charlie Adams started the game behind Dani Lopez and the Brentford loanee saw a shot deflected wide. Lopez headed the resultant corner over the crossbar.
Gateshead hadn’t threatened Nick Jupp’s goal but he had to be alert to deny James Marwood after the winger was played through.
Adams then whipped a shot narrowly wide for Barnet and the referee mercifully brought the half to a close soon after.
There were two changes at the break. Luke Gambin and Jon Nurse replaced Marsh-Brown and Lopez,
The second period began at a greater tempo and the visitors missed a big opportunity to go ahead. A swift counter attack led to former Bee Oster receiving the ball just inside the area.
He steadied himself and placed his shot towards the corner. Fortunately for Barnet, the ball went just wide.
The Bees responded and Curtis Weston’s dipping shot from 25 yards was well saved by Adam Bartlett.
From the resultant corner, Saville was brought down in the area. It looked a penalty but the referee waved away the appeals.
Gateshead’s defence had coped well with Barnet’s sporadic attacks and the visitors threatened as James Brown headed a corner towards goal that Jupp did well to save.
With 20 minutes remaining, Gateshead went ahead. Oster floated a cross into the penalty area and Chandler timed his run well and steered a header past Jupp.
Barnet made a change. Striker Harry Crawford replaced winger Cadogan but the Bees continued to be frustrated.
Gateshead threatened on the break and only good defending from Andy Yiadom denied Rob Ramshaw.
Nurse forced Bartlett into a routine stop in the closing stages and the blunt Barnet attack were unable to find an equaliser.
Fortunately for the Bees, results elsewhere went in their favour. They have only dropped one place to fourth in the table but will have to quickly rediscover their best form if they’re to remain in the play-off positions.
Barnet: Jupp; Yiadom, Saville, Stephens, Vilhete; Abdulla, Weston, Cadogan (Crawford 75); Marsh-Brown (Nurse 45), Adams; Lopez (Gambin 45).
Barnet substitutes: Mengerink, Gjokaj.
Gateshead: Bartlett; Baxter, Curtis, Clark, Magney (Holt 85); Chandler, Turnbull, Ramshaw; Marwood (O'Donnell 90), Oster (Hatch 90), Brown.
Gateshead substitutes: Walker, Lester.
Attendance: 1,361 (101).