Determination, team spirit and courageous defending were qualities shown by ten man Barnet against Fleetwood Town. But they were’t enough and Mark Robson’s side were beaten 2-1 at Highbury.

Jake Hyde put the Bees ahead early on but the game turned in the Trawlermen’s favour on 22 minutes when Barnet goalkeeper Graham Stack was sent off for a foul on David Ball. The striker then fired in the resulting penalty.

The visitors defended well for the majority of the contest but on 78 minutes, Tom Barkhuizen flicked a header goalwards and Sam Cowler was unable to keep the ball out. It proved costly as Fleetwood went on to seal victory.

Robson made no changes to his starting XI and it proved the correct choice as Barnet took the lead after just four minutes.

Ricky Holmes sent a John Oster corner towards goal. Fleetwood goalkeeper Scott Davies saved the shot well but in the ensuing goalmouth scramble Hyde turned the ball into the net.

From that point things started to go wrong for the Bees.

Stack had saved from Youl Mawene and Ball before the goalkeeper was dismissed. A cross into the box fell to Ball and he went over after a challenge from the Barnet stopper.

Referee Richard Clark pointed to the spot and showed Stack a red card. Cowler was brought on but the substitute keeper could not save Ball’s penalty.

The Bees defended well up to half time to keeper the score level. Fleetwood struggled to break down the Barnet defence and were forced into shots from distance - although Cowler did brilliantly to turn a Jamie McGuire header against the post.

Robson made a change to his side at the break as Jack Saville replaced Jordan Brown at left-back.

With the man advantage, the hosts pushed forward. Mewene had an effort saved by Cowler and Dean Howell curled a strike from distance just past the post.

Barnet rarely threatened but Holmes came close with an shot which narrowly missed the corner.

Barkhuizen glanced a header wide and the home support became restless as the Bees defended resolutely.

Their frustrations grew as Cowler produced a fine stop to deny McGuire from close range.

However, for all the Bees hard work, they went behind with 12 minutes remaining. A cross into the box was flicked towards goal by Barkhuizen.

Cowler got a hand on the header but it wasn’t strong enough and the ball trickled over the line.

Barnet attempted to find an equaliser but despite their hard work couldn’t break down the Fleetwood backline.

At full time the loyal Bees supporters gave their side strong applause and although the defeat was disappointing, there were plenty of encouraging signs to take into the game against Exeter City on Tuesday.

Fleetwood Town: Davies, Beeley, Howell, McNulty, Brown, McGuire, Johnson, Ball, Marrow, Mawene, Barkhuizen.

Fleetwood Town substitutes: Milligan, Parkin, Fowler, Nicholson, Maxwell, Gillespie, Eastham.

Barnet: Stack; Fuller, Stephens, Pearce, ssBrown; Kamdjo, Oster, Abdullah; Holmes, Lee, Hyde.

Barnet substitutes: Saville, Nurse, Yiadom, Cowler, Lowe, Kamara, Byrne.

Attendance: 2,615.