Express & Star

Kidderminster Harriers 1 Barnet 2 - Report

Kidderminster Harriers have failed to win in their last 11 National League outings following a 2-1 defeat against high-flying Barnet at Aggborough.


The Bees bagged first half goals from Anthony Hartigan and Callum Stead before Harriers’ captain Krystian Pearce pulled one back after the break.

The disappointing defeat left manager Russ Penn’s struggling side still searching for their first home victory of the campaign.

It also leaves them firmly anchored at the foot of the table after a tough start to life in non-league’s top flight following promotion last season.

Injury-hit Kidderminster made one change from the side which lost 2-1 at home to Oldham Athletic earlier in the week with midfielder Joe Leesley returning after suspension.

Among the substitutes was newcomer Sammy Robinson, a 21 year old former Port Vale defender who spent a number of years in Manchester City’s Academy.

He was drafted on for the second half in place of Ashley Hemmings.

Barnet stormed into the lead in the eighth minute when diving home goalkeeper Christian Dibble was beaten by a fiercely struck angled 20 yard free kick into the top corner by Hartigan.

Harriers set about trying to repair the early damage and a powerful volley by Alex Penny whizzed just over the bar.

The Bees, however, made it 2-0 in the 28th minute when a dangerous cross by skipper Harry Pritchard was headed home from close range by Stead.

Stunned Harriers responded shortly after the half hour mark when on-loan Bailey Hobson delayed his shot before pulling the trigger on a well hit drive which flew just over the bar.

The hosts huffed and puffed in the closing stages of the first half during which Barnet forced two quick-fire corners which both proved unproductive.

The visitors opened the second period with a dangerous curling cross by Reece Hall-Johnson which was firmly punched away by Dibble.

Soon after the lively Idris Kanu had a strong goalbound shot deflected for a corner which came to nothing.

Battling Harriers reduced the deficit on 64 minutes when man-of-the-match Pearce headed in a corner by Leesley.

But it was not long before Barnet were back upfield and Kanu caused problems with a header which was pushed over the bar by Dibble.

Harriers, however, gave the visitors a more testing time after the half went on, but they were unable to make another breakthrough.

Kidderminster: Dibble; Oxlade-Chamberlain, Pearce, Penny, Richards; Leesley, Hobson, Brown, Hemmings (Robinson, 46); McDonagh, Morgan-Smith (Phillips, 64). Subs not used: Lissimore, Maguire, Hall.

Barnet: Walker, Hall-Johnson, Collinge, Okimo, Kabamba (Gorman, 71), Stead, Kanu (Potter, 89), Pritchard, Hartigan, Oluwo, Brunt (Armstrong, 86). Subs not used: Gillimore, Barratt.

Referee: Aji Ajibola.

Attendance: 2,797 (183 away fans).