With Barnet's play-off hopes all but over Martin Allen says it was “only fair” to rotate his squad for today’s 1-0 win at Nuneaton Town as he builds for next season.
Barnet can mathematically still make the play-offs, but only if the sides above them lose both of their remaining fixtures.
With next term in mind, Allen made eight changes from the side thumped 4-0 by Halifax last weekend, handing Freddie Warren a first start since 2012 and giving youngsters Iffy Allen and Jamal Lowe rare run-outs.
“I wanted to see them all play; I thought it was only being fair to them all,” explained Allen.
“Since I’ve been here all those lads have all trained really hard and they haven’t always had an opportunity with me because I had to stick to that team up until Halifax and we still had a chance of getting in [the play-offs]."
Allen continued: “Once that went out the window that Saturday afternoon I promised all these lads straight away that I‘d give them a break, so it’s nice to see them play.
“We’ve played a different system, we’ve played a different way and with Dick’s [Schreuder] help over the last couple of days we’ve bedded it in, which has been good.”
The Bees struggled in the first-half to break down a Nuneaton side playing in front of new manager Brian Reid for the first time, but were re-invigorated after the break leading up to Valentin Gjokaj’s exquisite winner.
“I thought it was an excellent first half performance to be fair. We were the away team, made eight changes to our team and they never had one shot at our goal,” contended Allen.
“The second we half we changed it a little bit, we wanted to win, so we tried to be a little bit more open and expressive in the way we played. The game plan was to keep a clean sheet and win the game and that’s exactly how it worked out.”