Barnet’s familiar failing of conceding late goals returned with a vengeance when Robbie Weir scored Chesterfield’s winning goal in the third minute of time added on to clinch a 2-1 victory, sending the Bees to the bottom of the Football League.

Before the kick-off it was Chesterfield who were propping up the table and this result is a major setback for Barnet in their endeavours to retain their EFL status, although with less than half of the season having been played there remains time to turns matters around.

Barnet boss Mark McGhee selected a flat back four, three midfielders and three forwards with the wide players, Jamal Campbell-Ryce and Mauro Vilhete, dropping back to a five in midfield when required. The formation meant that top scorer Shaq Coulthirst could only make the substitutes’ bench.

Chesterfield came into the game on the back of a five-match unbeaten run but Barnet capitalised on an incoherent start by the hosts, with John Akinde volleying home a long pass from Ryan Watson in the 11th minute.

Barnet keeper Jamie Stephens was then kept busy as Jack Lester’s team sought a leveller, keeping out a long-range effort by Jak McCourt. Then incisive football by Chesterfield ended with Joe Rowley blasting the ball over the bar from 10 yards.

The Bees were eager to get to the break with their lead intact and the referee began to issue warnings about their time-wasting tactics.

The visitors continued in this fashion early in the second-half, which helped to nullify Chesterfield’s attacking ploys until just after the hour mark.

A Charlie Clough own goal in the 66th minute then turned the game the way of the Spireites and from that moment they looked the more positive outfit as the Bees retreated into their shells.

Clough was unfortunate to see his attempted clearance loop up high and over the hapless Stephens but questions will be asked as to how the ball was delivered into the penalty area with Dan Sweeney easily shrugged off it.

Chesterfield could sense that victory was now within their grasp and pushed forward for a winning goal. Any solidity that Barnet had in their play in the first hour was now on the wane.

A cross by substitutes Simeon Akinola that was deflected over the Chesterfield cross-bar and an effort from Coulthirst were Barnet’s best attempts at regaining their lead.

The board indicating that six minutes of additional time were to be played looked ominous for the Bees.

And three minutes into stoppage time Barnet’s hearts were broken. An astute pass from midfield by Ian Evett set Weir free on the edge of the penalty area and he calmly despatched the ball into the Barnet net.

Barnet: Stephens, H.Taylor (Fonguck 58), Clough, Santos, Blackman, Sweeney (Akinola 69), Watson, J.Taylor, Campbell-Ryce, Akinde, Vilhete (Coulthirst 62). Subs not used: Nelson, Tutonda, Ross, Nicholls.