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Ex-Hammer returns - for FIFTH management spell!

Filed: Monday, 19th March 2018
By: Staff Writer

Former Hammer Martin Allen has been appointed by League Two side Barnet - for the fifth time.

In what must be some kind of managerial record, former Hammers midfielder Allen has returned to The Hive for a fifth spell with the Bees six seven points adrift of safety at the foot of the Football League.

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News of Allen's return was confirmed by Chairman Tony Kleanthous, who fired his predecessor Graham Westley at the weekend.

"I knew Martin was available [before we hired Westley] and we met for breakfast one morning. We always get along great, he is an interesting character but a man with a genuinely good heart and he cares about the Club.

"I should have given him the job there and then but at that time I was still thinking we could make the playoffs and he was trying to convince me we were going to be fighting relegation.

"With hindsight he was right and I was in cuckoo land but as always when it comes to all things Barnet, I struggle to accept anything negative and my enthusiasm gets the better of me, I should have listened to him.

"In fairness to Graham, he has been absolutely great to work with and the team ethic has definitely improved under him. However after two successive poor home performances and with the season running out, I had to go for one last throw of the dice.

"This meant turning to the only man I know who can hopefully restore some belief and get the wins we need to salvage our League status. Sitting on my hands and doing nothing was not an option.

"So here we are again, another Monday another manager, Martin is back. His remit is simple, clear the decks, get everyone focused and win matches!"

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Allen, 52, who featured for West Ham between 1989 and 1995 was first appointed manager of Barnet in 2003. Following spells at Brentford, MK Dons, Leicester and Cheltenham he returned to the Underhill Stadium for a short-term stint in 2011.

After a season at Notts County he returned for a third spell at the club in a caretaker role in 2012 with Barnet, shortly before they moved to a new ground (The Hive).

A fourth spell - at two years, his longest - followed a year at Gillingham before Allen took the vacant post at Eastleigh, his most recent role before accepting Kleanthous' latest call for help.

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