DEREK’S DOUBLE STINGS BEES
LADY LUCK might have shone on Carlisle but Keith Curle insisted hard work was the real deciding factor in his side’s unlikely victory against Barnet at Brunton Park.
The Cumbrians raced into a two-goal lead through Tom Miller and Derek Asamoah, but were soon pinned back through Bira Dembele and Michael Gash’s headed efforts.
And despite being dominated for the large majority of the game, Curle’s men stole the points through Asamoah to seal a second victory of the season.
Yet the Carlisle boss chose not to focus on his side’s fortune but instead their spirit and defensive quality.
He said:“We are a work in progress, but to come up against what we did here was a completely new test – and we tackled it well.
“There was a lot of blocks and a little bit of luck, but we earned that.
“There’s an old quote that says ‘the more you practice, the luckier you get’ – and I think that was fitting for us here.
“Watching Barnet, I felt like I’d gone back 25 years and I was back playing for Wimbledon. They are very physical, very confrontational.
“Many will say it’s not pretty but trust me, it is effective, so it’s very satisfying that we dug in and got the three points.”
With just two minutes on the clock, home striker Asamoah won a freekick on the right flank and a superb Danny Grainger delivery was nodded in by fellow defender Miller. And it was soon two, when free-scoring Jabo Ibehre sent his strike-partner Asamoah through one-on-one with Jamie Stephens.
The veteran steadied himself, taking the ball around the Bees keeper before blazing home.
Barnet looked unlikely to lie down though, and after a couple of glaring misses drew level in two frantic first-half minutes. First, imposing centre-half Dembele bulleted home a header from a corner, before Gash pounced onto a fantastic Luke Gambin cross only seconds later to nod his side level.
And while Barnet continued to dominate after the interval, their early profligacy returned. John Akinde was the lead culprit, blazing wide after robbing Michael Raynes in the Carlisle area to the amazement of all inside the ground.
Dembele continued to cause issues with his physical presence and cracked the bar again with another header.
And Curle’s men gave their opponents a lesson in finishing, when substitute Alexander McQueen brilliantly beat his man and drilled a low cross onto a plate for Asamoah.
Barnet boss Martin Allen said:“You had to be there to believe it.
“I’ve never seen such a one-sided encounter in 19 years of football. We should’ve been six up in the first 15 minutes, and they’ve taken their only two chances. “Then in the second half we have been completely dominant, hit the bar and they’ve scored with their only shot. If we keep spirits and self-belief high the points will soon be rolling in.”
CARLISLE (5-3-2): Gillespie 5, Thompson 6 (McQueen 60, 8), Miller 6, Raynes 5, Grainger 7, Brough 6 (Osei 75, 6), Joyce 5, Kennedy 6, Hery 5 (Dicker 68, 7), Ibehre 7, Asamoah 8. Subs not used: Hanford, Sweeney, Balanta, Rigg
BARNET (4-4-2): Stephens 6, Yiadom 7, N’Gala 6, Dembele 7, Johnson 6, Vilhete 6 (Tomlinson 68, 6), Weston 6, Togwell 7 (Muggleton 79, 7), Gambin 8, Akinde 7, Gash 7 (McClean 68, 5). Subs not used: McKenzie-Lyle, Hoyte, Nelson, Champion
MILLER TIME: Carlisle United’s Tom Miller scores after just two minutes STAR MAN DEREK