Woking picked up a crucial three points with a 1-0 win at home to Barnet in the Vanarama National League on Saturday.

After a cagey opening ten minutes, a fantastic pass from Timi Odusina found Jermaine Anderson down the right-hand side, and his low cross just evaded Alfie Pavey in the middle. Good play from Charley Kendall after 20 minutes saw him drive down the right and feed Anderson, who was denied by Anthony Hartigan as he looked to pull the trigger.

After Curtis Edwards’ corner was only half cleared with 35 minutes gone, the ball fell to Jayden Luker on the volley, but his effort flew just wide of the far corner. The first attempt on goal for the Bees saw Jerome Okimo nearly find the top corner from distance, only to be denied brilliantly by Will Jaaskelainnen, who tipped the ball behind for a corner.

Brilliant work from Curtis Edwards and Odusina saw the latter fire a cross into the back post, where the awaiting Pavey was just unable to convert. Although the sides went into half time level, the Cards had been on top, playing some nice football and getting in behind the Bees’ high line.

Eight minutes into the second half, great work from Kevin Berkoe down the left-hand side saw him drill a cross onto the head of Pavey, but his cushioned header just crept wide of the far corner. After a spell of pressure from the Bees, a freakish goal gave the Cards the lead in the 61st minute. Great work from Kendall saw his cross loop towards goal, coming back off the post. Luker’s follow up was then blocked but only into the path of Berkoe, who smashed home to break the deadlock.

A superb run and cross from Berkoe found Pavey with 80 minutes gone, but his header just went over the bar. Barnet had the ball in the net three minutes later, but after Nicke Kabamba had converted Dale Gorman’s cross, the linesman’s flag went up straight away.

Minus that little scare, the Cards saw it out comfortably to make it three home wins on the bounce. A determined performance from Michael Doyle’s men, who were fully deserving of all three points.

Action from Woking's 1-0 win against Barnet
(Woking Football Club)

Saturday’s win followed a 2-1 defeat at Rochdale last Tuesday night (March 12).

Woking made a quick start. A powerful strike from Jermaine Anderson from the edge of the box had to be parried away by Tiernan Brooks for a corner with four minutes gone. Rochdale’s first attack ended with Cian Hayes’ shot flying just wide of the bottom corner, after the winger had sprinted down the right-hand side towards goal.

A superb ball towards the back post from Curtis Edwards was met by Josh Casey, but the left-back skied his strike over the bar. A mistake from Ethan Ebanks-Landell after 15 minutes saw him caught on the edge of his own box by Charley Kendall, who smashed the ball past Brooks to give the Cards the lead.

After 35 minutes, excellent play from Casey and Kendall saw the ball fall to Rohan Ince on the edge of the box, but his curling shot flew just wide of the far corner. A simply sublime strike from Cian Hayes on 38 minutes made it 1-1. He had no right to drive down the wing before curling the ball into the far corner, giving Will Jaaskelainen no chance.

The sides went into the break level after Woking had looked relatively comfortable at 1-0 up. But Hayes’ goal appeared to give Dale a lift.

Action from Woking's 2-1 defeat at Rochdale
(Woking Football Club)

It took until the 64th minute for any notable second half action, when Kendall and Anderson linked up well, with the latter blazing over the bar. Then came a contentious decision when a full-blooded tackle from Dion Kelly-Evans on Hayes after 68 minutes led to the winger staying down, and the referee decided it was worth a sending off.

After Alfie Pavey’s fine challenge led to a free kick for Dale, another one followed after a similar challenge. Devante Rodney blasted the ball past Jaaskelainen to give the home side the lead in the 88th minute. Ian Henderson was sent off for an altercation following the goal.

Woking had the ball in the net on 93 minutes, but a late flag saved Rochdale.

Next up for Woking is a trip to Southend United in the National League on Saturday (3pm). Woking will be full of confidence after four wins in their past five games.

By William Bewsey