With 18 league goals to his name already this season, Barnet’s John Akinde is one of the biggest talents in the Football League.
The talented forward joined Barnet from Alfreton during the 2014 Summer transfer window following an impressive season with The Reds.
Prior to this Akinde had played for a number of sides, starting his career in Non-League with Gravesend & Northfleet, who later became Ebbsfleet United. During his time with United the forward was sent out on loan to Margate.
After winning the FA Trophy with Ebbsfleet, Akinde signed for Bristol City in 2008 where he spent three years with the club making 16 league appearances.
The forward spent a number of spells out on loan with clubs such as Wycombe Wanderers and Bristol Rovers.
In May 2011, Akinde joined a newly promoted Crawley Town side. With 31 league appearances to his name for The Red Devils, the striker signed for Portsmouth on a month to month contract in February 2013.
Akinde then signed for Non-League Alfreton Town in a bid for first team football. The forward enjoyed his spell here as he went onto score 18 league goals in 43 appearances, leading to him becoming an attraction for a number of sides.
Barnet were the team to get his signature in 2014 and since then the forward has gone on to become The Bees’ talisman.
ElWriteBack’s Charlie Russell spoke to the forward about his time with Barnet.
Last summer you signed a contract extension with Barnet until 2019. Would you say the club is your main focus for the next two years?
Of course, that is all that is in my focus right now. I believe Barnet have the capability to play higher hence why I signed.
After scoring 18 league goals in 26 appearances so far this season, how confident are you about securing the League Two top scorer award?
That isn’t something I think about. I just focus on the next game and try to get myself in goal scoring positions to give myself the best opportunities to score. I would love to be top goal scorer but the focus is on the performance of the team and winning games.
What are Barnet’s main aims as a club this season?
You are 27-years-old and have an amazing scoring record for Barnet. Do you feel you’ve developed late in a similar way to that of Jamie Vardy?
No not really, he’s developed as Jamie Vardy and I have developed in my own way. I’ve had to drop down the leagues to start again, which is what I needed. He has done very well and has set a great example for players in the lower league.
How confident are you that you can work your way up the English football pyramid?
I am very confident. As I’ve said before I felt I needed to be playing games regularly which only really started at Alfreton. I was 19 when I moved to Bristol in the Championship and I’ve learnt a lot over the past seven or so years. I’ve always believed that I was good enough to play higher. I hope I get a chance to show that.
Last January getwestlondon.co.uk reported that Wolves were rumoured to be interested in you. Have any clubs approached Barnet regarding your name this January transfer window?
Yes, I saw that. I don’t pay attention to stuff like that. What will be, will be. It’s always nice to have rumours as it means you are doing something right. I’ve not heard anything so far about this January.
Finally, after a 3-1 loss to Doncaster last weekend, which you scored in. How can Barnet get back on track with a win against Newport County on Saturday?
It was very disappointing to lose. I want to win every game. We just need to do what we have been doing. In the last few games we have performed well. So as long as we keep doing the right thing and do what we have been working on, then I’m sure we’ll get a good result.