Over zealous policing puts dampener on our special Gentry Day, but team lifts spirits - John Roper looks back win over Barnsley
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One down to a poorly conceded first goal from the hosts left North End with a little bit to do in a game with nothing at stake in terms of league position.
Daniel Johnson soon levelled matters for North End as the visitors started to get on top in the game and never really looked back.
A beautiful strike from Johnson again saw North End edge in front after the break and from that moment on the result was never really in doubt with Emil Riis making the game safe in the last quarter of an hour.
Although it was a good day on the pitch, off the field a real dampener was put on our special day by some of the most totally over the top policing around this fixture and some over officious stewarding.
This was a very poor, aggressive and intolerant display by the agencies charged with spectator safety and care at Oakwell.
The Tykes took the lead due to a very poor goal on our part. The ball was kept in play when it should have been dealt with and with some North Enders still waiting to get in the ground we were a goal down.
Daniel Johnson made it 1-1 after good work on the left, his accurate shot beating Walton in the home goal.
Just before the break Whiteman hit the bar with a dipping effort but it was all square as the teams trooped off at half time.
We went ahead in the second half thanks to a beautiful curling effort across the keeper from Johnson .
With a quarter of an hour left Riis was put through and he calmly rounded the keeper and scored from a very acute angle to seal the points.
Young Mikey O’Neill was then introduced and the lad showed some real good touches in the fourteen minutes or so he was on the field.
So the final road trip of the season ends with a victory as North End tried to wipe away the memory of a couple of nightmare trips on the road recently.
I doubt if the plan to play DJ at left wing back is one that will be taken into next season but the five in midfield was very fluid on the day and saw some good interaction particularly between Johnson and McCann.
Next Saturday sees the final act of this fifty one game season when Middlesbrough visit Deepdale with their play off hopes very much alive.
I expect an all action encounter and I sincerely hope we get to see the Cumbrian Cannavaro –Paul Huntington - for one last time before his 10 years at Deepdale probably comes to an end.