Martin Allen says Barnet can show friendly opponents Luton Town how far they've come since playing one another last season

Martin Allen has urged his side to show how far they've come since last season. Picture: Action Images

Martin Allen has urged his side to show how far they've come since last season. Picture: Action Images

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Martin Allen says Barnet can show Luton Town how far they have come since the Hatters won promotion last season when the two sides meet on Sunday.

Luton provide the opposition for Barnet's third pre-season friendly at The Hive and last season secured promotion back to the Football League after five seasons in the Conference by winning the title.

John Still's side finished comfortably ahead of the Bees in eighth place and Allen is determined his side will demonstrate just how much they have improved since the end of last season when the two teams were divisional rivals.

“I think Luton will see a very different Barnet team to the one that they saw last year. The mentality and the culture had to change, there’s no doubt about it, and it had to be drastic change," Allen told the club's website.

“Four part-time clubs finished above Barnet last season and we finished 31 points behind Luton. Thirty-one points, that’s eleven games. That can’t happen again. It’s a completely different work ethic and character with the group of players that we’ve now got."

Head coach Allen has also revealed the side which will start Barnet's friendly against the League Two new-boys on Sunday.

All 11 will be contracted Bees players for the first time this pre-season, with the games against Peterborough United and Stevenage seeing a number of trialists feature for the Bees.

“These are the eleven players that are going to start the game on Sunday will be Stack, Gambin, Weston, Akinde, Stephens, Johnson, Saville, Vilhete, Luisma, Marsh-Brown and Yiadom," confirmed Allen, who also said he expected some players to complete 90 minutes for the first time.

The Bees boss said on Tuesday he had a trialist right-sided midfielder lined up to replace Dan Bradley following the midfielder's change of heart but was unsure as to whether the player would be available to face Luton.

Town manager Still has wasted little time in tweaking his squad ahead of the big kick-off, making no fewer than seven summer signings.

Headlining the list of 'ins' is former Crawley and Ipswich Town midfielder Andy Drury, who joined from the Red Devils for £100,000 at the end of last month, having previously played at Kenilworth Road in the 2010/11 season.

Experienced full-back Paul Connolly has also joined from the Sussex club, having turned out for Derby County and Leeds United in recent years.

Other additions include forwards Ross Lafayette (Welling United), Ricky Miller (Boston United) and Lee Angol (Wycombe Wanderers), as well as right-back Curtley Williams (Lowestoft Town) and centre-half Luke Wilkinson (Dagenham and Redbridge).

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