Nabil Bentaleb’s goal seconds into the second half secured a deserved 1-0 victory and stretched the team’s lead to eight points over Manchester United in the Elite Group of the Barclays U21 Premier League.
That was the least the team warranted after dominating for long periods at Barnet’s Underhill Stadium. Chances came and went either side of Nabil’s goal, Arsenal goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez was in fine form and when required, Jonathan Miles made a key late save to deny Chuba Akpom.
Akpom also struck the crossbar but the Gunners were limited to few chances.
“We played really well,” said Chris, our Senior Professional Phase Coach. “One of the things that really pleased us this time was understanding the game state.
“When you play for the first team, you can be under the cosh and then things can change in an instant. That’s when you have to be ready to take a chance or keep a clean sheet and we did that.
“Tom Carroll came in and he’s like a big brother to a lot of these players, he was outstanding for us again. Younger lads like Giancarlo Gallifuoco came in and fit in well, he’s not featured for a while and congratulations to Jake Nicholson, who hasn’t played for over 12 months and returned in the second half.”
Jake replaced Nabil on 67 minutes - his first action since February, 2012 after long-term hip trouble.
Already assured of a place in next month's play-offs, a win against Southampton in our final match on Monday will clinch top spot in the Elite Group.