Martin 'Mad Dog' Allen appointed by Barnet

Martin Allen is back in management as the new boss of League Two strugglers Barnet.

The former West Ham and QPR midfielder, known as 'Mad Dog', has been out of work since leaving Cheltenham in December 2009.

Allen, 45, began his managerial career with the Bees when they were in the Conference before moving on to Brentford. He has also managed Leicester and MK Dons.

Allen has agreed a contract until the end of the season with the Bees lying second from bottom, three points adrift of safety with eight matches remaining following last night's defeat at Aldershot.

He replaces Paul Fairclough, who took over as caretaker boss when Mark Stimson was axed on New Year's Day.

Chairman Tony Kleanthous admitted the shock move is "the last throw of the dice" in his club's attempt to beat the drop.

Kleanthous added: "It is important that everything possible is done to retain our Football League status and we will support Martin thoroughly in his efforts to turn things round and bring in any new players he feels appropriate.

"We now have to win five or six of our last eight games and everyone is focused on the task ahead."