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Football news 2021, Harry Kewell axed by Barnet FC, latest, National League, Socceroos

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Socceroos legend Harry Kewell has been ignominiously axed by English fifth-tier club Barnet FC after just seven league games in charge.

Kewell – who previously coached in England’s League Two (the fourth division) with Crawley Town, Notts County and Oldham Athletic – this season took on an even tougher challenge in the fifth division.

The Bees finished last in the previous season’s National League, and Kewell failed to turn them around in his brief stint.

In his seven games, Kewell has picked up two draws and five losses – including a 5-0 shellacking on the opening day – leaving them second-last in 22nd position having conceded a whopping 19 goals. The only team below Kewell’s side on the ladder is Dover, which started the season with a 12-point deduction

Kewell had even received a red card during one defeat after protesting a controversial referee decision.

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In a club statement, Barnet Head of Football, Dean Brennan, said: “It was clear how much Harry Kewell wanted to have a positive impact, but ultimately the results and the poor start to the season have dictated our decision.

“The plan for this season was for Barnet FC to be challenging in the top half of the table and that is still very much our aim.”

Kewell was already the club’s third permanent manager this year, and last week said Barnet’s early-season hopes had been hampered by injuries and he would turn things around.

“It’s fantastic, I have to say. There are challenges which you get, and I’m sure when you go to the highest level, there’s different kinds of challenges,” Kewell told Optus Sport.

“But it’s a new team and this is what a lot of people don’t understand. At the lower levels, it’s very rare you get to have a squad that’s been together for at least a season because everyone is chopping and changing all the time.

“So when you do see a team that actually sticks with 80 per cent of their team, they usually start to have a little bit of success, so it does take time.

“It is challenging. I don’t think there’s a big difference between the National League, League Two and League One – I really don’t.

“So it is tough, it’s fun and yes, we haven’t got off to the greatest of starts, but we’re down with about nine injuries at the moment so it’s a little bit unlucky. But we’re slowly getting them back and hopefully we can start to progress that little bit more.”

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