Shaun Derry anticipating Barnet to be a stern test for Cambridge United

PUBLISHED: 07:10 24 February 2017

Cambridge United manager Shaun Derry.

Cambridge United manager Shaun Derry.

Iliffe Media Ltd

U’s aiming to take sting out of the Bees

Shaun Derry is conscious of the threat posed to Cambridge United when they make the trip to Barnet in Sky Bet League Two tomorrow (Saturday, February 25).

The Bees are two points and two places above United in the table, with the teams having drawn 1-1 at the Cambs Glass Stadium, in the first game of the season.

But Barnet have undergone a number of changes since then, with Martin Allen departing as manager to be replaced by interim bosses Rossi Eames and Henry Newman, before Kevin Nugent took over the reins last week.

“What a season they’ve had,” said United boss Derry. “They’ve had three or four managers at the helm, albeit temporary ones.

“Martin Allen leaving, Rossi and Henry taking over, another new manager has come in only last week so there will be a different type of angle that Barnet are going to come from, but they are above us.

“They have had a good season themselves. They’ve got some good players there – some strong, quick players – so I think we have to be on top of our game, that’s for sure.

“They’ve proved throughout the course of this season, even with the type of situation where they’ve had two or three managers at the helm, that they have been pretty consistent.

“I said when we played them in the first game of the season that they would be up and around the top end of the division and I still think that’s the case.”

Nugent was in charge for Barnet’s 1-1 draw with Portsmouth last week, and Derry is expecting to see the Bees continue to respond to the new man.

“There will be a reaction, of course,” said Derry. “Looking back as a player myself, whenever there was a new manager that came in or a new face it resurrected a few people.

“Those that were getting nowhere near the squad suddenly find a little bit of light at the end of the tunnel and you can gather your season to how you want it to be.

“With Kevin coming in, I don’t think he’ll want to change it too much.

“He will look upon the group that he has got and the work that Rossi in particular has been able to implement at the football club and will want to carry it on.

“They’ve got some good players there. They’ve got one of the most dominant centre forwards in the league and we have to be aware of the strengths of not just John Akinde but others there as well.

“They’ve got a number of players there who can cause anybody a problem at our level.”

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