Constable hails Oxford United hero Clarke

Oxford Mail: Ryan Clarke acknowledges the U's fans last night Ryan Clarke acknowledges the U's fans last night

JAMES Constable hailed goalkeeper Ryan Clarke after his late penalty save gave Oxford United a vital 2-1 win over Barnet last night.

Goals from Scott Rendell and Constable had put the U’s ahead after they fell behind to a Michael Hector strike.

But with six minutes left, Damian Batt appeared to foul Ricky Holmes outside the box, only for referee Stuart Attwell to point to the spot.

But Clarke (pictured) saved the day, denying Izale McLeod with his legs.

It means that United’s No 1 has now let in only five penalties from 15 that have been taken against him during his spell at the club.

“It’s a phenomonal record,” Constable said.

“I think when the penalty was given, most in the ground expected him to save it, which shows how well he has done from penalties.”

He added: “From a personal point of view it was great to get another goal, but more importantly, we got the three points.”

The win sees the U’s move five points clear of the eighth-placed team and nine off automatic promotion.

Boss Chris Wilder said: “I thought we fell behind to a very unfortunate goal, but fully deserved to get back into the game before half-time.

“Barnet were on the rack for a lot of the first half and the first 25 minutes of the second period. We should have kicked on, but didn’t.

“They will go away and say they have missed a penalty that would have given them a draw, but we have had lots of opportunities once again to win the game comfortably.”

On-loan striker Rendell had told the Oxford Mail in the build-up to the game that he had a feeling it would be the match that he broke his duck for United, and so it proved.

“How about you come and speak to me before every match, then hopefully I can get even more goals,” he laughed.

“But I was delighted to get the goal and hopefully it will be the first of many for Oxford.”

Comments (7)

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2:30pm Wed 22 Feb 12

Joe1 says...

CW's comments re us not pushing to take full advantage is all so true. We have heard this comment time & time again. What is the problem? It has got to be due to the way we train & the tactics of our management!!!
We are so lucky that our Clarkie is such a good penalty stopper. We done there.
CW look to yr game plans!!!

"COME ON YOU YELLOWS"
CW's comments re us not pushing to take full advantage is all so true. We have heard this comment time & time again. What is the problem? It has got to be due to the way we train & the tactics of our management!!! We are so lucky that our Clarkie is such a good penalty stopper. We done there. CW look to yr game plans!!! "COME ON YOU YELLOWS" Joe1

2:31pm Wed 22 Feb 12

Joe1 says...

CW's comments re us not pushing to take full advantage is all so true. We have heard this comment time & time again. What is the problem? It has got to be due to the way we train & the tactics of our management!!!
We are so lucky that our Clarkie is such a good penalty stopper. We done there.
CW look to yr game plans!!!

"COME ON YOU YELLOWS"
CW's comments re us not pushing to take full advantage is all so true. We have heard this comment time & time again. What is the problem? It has got to be due to the way we train & the tactics of our management!!! We are so lucky that our Clarkie is such a good penalty stopper. We done there. CW look to yr game plans!!! "COME ON YOU YELLOWS" Joe1

4:23pm Wed 22 Feb 12

gnash21 says...

Well done Clarkie! I think as Wilder is defensively minded it take over when playing the games. I am glad Rendell scored. Other then Robbie Hall he is the only forward we have brought in on loan that actually looks like he can score a few goals. Another 3 points saturday and roll on March 3rd!
Well done Clarkie! I think as Wilder is defensively minded it take over when playing the games. I am glad Rendell scored. Other then Robbie Hall he is the only forward we have brought in on loan that actually looks like he can score a few goals. Another 3 points saturday and roll on March 3rd! gnash21

8:35pm Wed 22 Feb 12

burnseykidlington says...

Important win on tues, keeps us in touch.

I never criticise wilder but he says "they were there for the taking" which they were, but if you take off 2 strikers (johnson and rendall) and bring on a left back and a centre half (tonkin and worley) what does he expect? the 3rd goal would have killed it and we were on top, but he resorted to men behind the ball?

Will need to be better than that to win this sat let alone the next (3rd march)

YELLOWS
Important win on tues, keeps us in touch. I never criticise wilder but he says "they were there for the taking" which they were, but if you take off 2 strikers (johnson and rendall) and bring on a left back and a centre half (tonkin and worley) what does he expect? the 3rd goal would have killed it and we were on top, but he resorted to men behind the ball? Will need to be better than that to win this sat let alone the next (3rd march) YELLOWS burnseykidlington

6:31am Thu 23 Feb 12

martico1 says...

Right on x 3, Burnsey. We've never been good at defending a slender lead when a team is coming at us - but we bring on two guys who haven't kicked a ball for weeks. What had Mehdi done wrong after sparkling on Sat?!
Right on x 3, Burnsey. We've never been good at defending a slender lead when a team is coming at us - but we bring on two guys who haven't kicked a ball for weeks. What had Mehdi done wrong after sparkling on Sat?! martico1

9:14am Thu 23 Feb 12

New Manor rename says...

burnseykidlington wrote:
Important win on tues, keeps us in touch. I never criticise wilder but he says "they were there for the taking" which they were, but if you take off 2 strikers (johnson and rendall) and bring on a left back and a centre half (tonkin and worley) what does he expect? the 3rd goal would have killed it and we were on top, but he resorted to men behind the ball? Will need to be better than that to win this sat let alone the next (3rd march) YELLOWS
Absolutely right mate. Time and time again pre match comments from CW include 'This will be a tough match'. His mindset, and subsequent mindset of players, is every game is rock hard. Always negative. We need to start believing we are one of the best in the division (because we are) and other teams will be lucky toi leave with a 3-0 thrashing!!!!! Stay positive CW it becomes infectious!
[quote][p][bold]burnseykidlington[/bold] wrote: Important win on tues, keeps us in touch. I never criticise wilder but he says "they were there for the taking" which they were, but if you take off 2 strikers (johnson and rendall) and bring on a left back and a centre half (tonkin and worley) what does he expect? the 3rd goal would have killed it and we were on top, but he resorted to men behind the ball? Will need to be better than that to win this sat let alone the next (3rd march) YELLOWS[/p][/quote]Absolutely right mate. Time and time again pre match comments from CW include 'This will be a tough match'. His mindset, and subsequent mindset of players, is every game is rock hard. Always negative. We need to start believing we are one of the best in the division (because we are) and other teams will be lucky toi leave with a 3-0 thrashing!!!!! Stay positive CW it becomes infectious! New Manor rename

11:52am Thu 23 Feb 12

Adman says...

Interesting to note that Robert Green's penalty save percentage is 47%. Clarke's is 66%! True he's not facing premier or championship type players, but I am not convinced there is that much difference between the divisions when it comes to penalty taking. Maybe, he really is the best penalty saver in the world...
Interesting to note that Robert Green's penalty save percentage is 47%. Clarke's is 66%! True he's not facing premier or championship type players, but I am not convinced there is that much difference between the divisions when it comes to penalty taking. Maybe, he really is the best penalty saver in the world... Adman

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