Phil Yelland studies Barrow's previous visits to Stevenage ahead of Saturday's League Two encounter at The Lamex Stadium.
Saturday sees our fourth visit to The Lamex Stadium and we will be looking to record our second win at the venue.
Our first visit was on 17th April 1999 – two weeks before the end of the season. Stevenage were on course for a top six finish, whilst we had been liquidated in January and were battling for survival on and off the pitch.
Five minutes before half time both sides went down to ten men as home defender Ross Harrison and Barrow midfielder Lee Prior were dismissed. Early in the second half, Carl Alford gave the home side the lead from the spot. Barrow battled back and local striker Brian Dawson struck the equaliser before Ian Foster grabbed a precious winner for our first away win since Boxing Day at Southport.
Our next visit to Stevenage was on 17th January 2009, after we had won our way back to the non-league top-flight through the Blue Square North play-offs at the end of 2007/08.
It was an afternoon for Barrow to forget and the 3-0 score line might have been much worse. Barrow were reduced to ten men on 17 minutes when Andy Bond saw red for a two-footed challenge on Lee Boylan. The only surprise was that it took the home side until the 39th minute to take the lead through David Bridges. Steve Morison added two goals in three minutes early in the second half. Then, with Morison hunting his trick, Steve McNulty brought him down in what the referee considered to be a last man challenge and the big defender also saw red. Down to nine men with over half an hour to go, things looked bleak, but we hung on to escape with only a three-goal defeat.
Or most recent visit to The Lamex Stadium was on Tuesday 9th March 2010, just four days before the first leg of our FA Trophy semi-final at Salisbury.
It was the game that saw defender Paul Edwards make his Barrow debut but that was the only bright spot on a night where the home side won convincingly to go back to the top of the table ahead of Oxford United.
Their hero was pacey striker Yemi Odubade, who opened the scoring on 29 minutes and completed a hat-trick with further goals on the hour mark and six minutes from time. The other scorer, on the stroke of half time, was Scott Laird.
Hopefully on Saturday we can recapture the spirit of 1999 - and the same result.