Barker ready for rough ride
BURY chairman Brian Fenton and former Shakers manager Richie Barker are in agreement about one thing – neither expect the now Crawley boss to get a good reception when he takes his side to Gigg Lane tomorrow.
Barker, who left Bury five days before the start of the season to take over at Crawley, will return for the first time.
And Fenton is in no doubt that the 37-year-old manager will be in for a difficult time, despite leading Bury into League One before keeping them up in his only full season in charge.
He said. “It could be a bit difficult. Alan Knill never got one (a good reception) and I thought he did terrific for Bury Football Club.
“I can’t see Richie getting a good reception from the fans, whether he deserves one or not. That’s what football fans are like.
“But with some of the comments that have come out in the press, he’s not done himself any favours.”
Barker has had a rough ride from his own fans of late, with Crawley dropping down to 14th in League One after picking up just one win in six matches.
But he has still enjoyed more love than he ever did at Gigg Lane, according to the former Shakers youth coach, who was given the top Bury job after Alan Knill left just nine games before the end of the 2010/11 season.
“The the reception I get from the fans doesn’t really bother me to be honest,” said Barker.
“I am sure some people will want to have a go at me but I don’t expect it will be any worse than when I was manager there.”
Bury go into the match without on-loan defender Stephane Zubar, who is expected to be out for the season after injuring his knee at Notts County last Friday.
Mark Hughes, who is on loan at Accrington Stanley and could have been recalled as a replacement, is also out after tearing a calf muscle on Tuesday.