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Dartford v Kingstonian

Steve King’s reign as Dartford manager begins with this weekend’s F.A Cup fourth qualifying round tie against Isthmian Premier League side Kingstonian.

The new Dartford boss can guide the Darts to their fifth first round appearance in seven years with victory and a chance to play a Football League club. King arrives at Princes Park knowing how to embark on a F.A Cup run, he led Macclesfield Town to the fourth round six years ago losing to eventual winners Wigan Athletic.

Last season, King managed local rivals Welling United to third in the National South and a playoff final. Starting his managerial career at Lewes, he guided the Sussex club to three titles taking them from the Isthmian Division One South to the National League in five years. Whilst at Farnborough, King won the Southern Premier League and lost the National South playoff the next season. Another spell at Lewes before his stint with Macclesfield Town was followed by keeping Whitehawk in the National South and another playoff final defeat. King moved to Dagenham and Redbridge, but soon returned to Whitehawk in an attempt to keep them safe from relegation. King arrives at Princes Park with plenty of experience at this level.

Dartford’s new boss was appointed last week, however Tony Burman remained in charge for Saturday’s 1-0 win at Oxford City. The Darts have now won four consecutive away games in all competitions for the first time in over a year. Burman made three changes to the side that beat Blackfield and Langley in the previous round of the F.A Cup. Cameron Brodie was named on the bench and Rob Howard returned to full back, Darren McQueen replaced the injured Charlie Sheringham and Andy Pugh was recalled from East Thurrock United to take the place of departed striker Adam Cunnington.

Winner of Dartford’s September Player of the Month, Ben Greenhalgh followed up that accolade with the winning goal. Darren McQueen had already tested Oxford City’s goalkeeper Craig King, but just past the half hour mark Greenhalgh curled the ball beyond the shot stopper into the net. The hosts came closest in the second-half when Reece Beckles-Richards hit the post. The Darts defended well and relied on the counter attack eventually holding out for the win.

King will select his first matchday squad this weekend but will be without Sheringham, the striker dislocated his shoulder and Sam Blackman, who is on the mend from a long-term injury. Mark Onyemah will be available, the full back made his first appearance since March coming on as a late substitute against Oxford City.

Dartford will have fond memories of playing Kingstonian in the Isthmian Premier League, but the last meeting between the two sides was in the F.A Trophy almost seven years ago. Marcus Bettinelli saved an early Andre McCollin penalty before the Darts went on to win the first-round tie 4-0. Jacob Erskine opened the scoring at Kingsmeadow and when Simon Huckle was dismissed for the hosts, the Darts took full advantage. Second-half goals from Elliot Bradbrook, Danny Harris and Nathan Collier secured a passage into round two.

However, the two Isthmian Premier League clashes during the 2009/2010 season were even more memorable. The Darts clinched the title at Kingsmeadow in style thrashing a Kingstonian side second in the league at the time. Elliot Bradbrook finished of a fine team goal and Ryan Hayes smashed home from long range. Huckle halved the deficit for the hosts, but Danny Harris headed in Dartford’s third. Bradbrook added his second of the afternoon capitalising on Rob Tolfrey’s mistake, then Bobby Traynor made it 4-2. Dartford stretched their lead further with another strike from Hayes and Lee Burns made it six.

Previously that season, Lee Burns netted a hat-trick in the last meeting between the two sides at Princes Park. Bradbrook started the rout, Burns netted two and Hayes scored one before Burns eventually completed his hat-trick after missing from the spot earlier.

Kingstonian started their F.A Cup campaign last month in the first qualifying round hosting Southern League Premier South side Walton Casuals. Second-half goals from Ollie Cook and Louie Theophanous was enough to see the K’s set up a tie with March Town United. The Surrey side comfortably negotiated their way past the Eastern Counties League club winning 3-0, Dan Bennett notched a brace before his replacement Yousef Bamba added a third in the last minute.

This month, Hayden Bird’s side required a replay to overcome Weston-super-Mare in the third qualifying round. Reece Hall put the K’s ahead and when Jerry Puemo was sent off the K’s had to try and hold on with ten men and Kingstonian almost did it, only to concede a last-minute penalty which Scott Laird scored. The replay was more straightforward, Fabio Saraiva’s goal was cancelled out by Weston-super-Mare’s George Dowling. Puemo made amends for his red card in the first game by putting Kingstonian ahead then Hall and Theophanous wrapped up the 4-1 victory.

Manager Hayden Bird spoke to www.kingstonian.com after the replay victory at Weston and can’t wait for this weekend’s fixture, he said: “I’m quite excited about the draw, it’s what the fourth qualifying round is about. You don’t really get free passes when you get to that level of the competition”, he added: “With respect to Dartford I would say it is very winnable and if we play like we did (at Weston) then we will have a great chance. I want to be playing Dartford in the league, hopefully when we play them we will be looking into our future a little bit”.

In league and F.A Cup, Kingstonian are now unbeaten in four matches. Either side of their F.A Cup exploits against Weston-super-mare, the K’s beat Haringey Borough 1-0 with Puemo netting the decisive goal and drew 2-2 on the weekend at Carshalton Athletic. Kingstonian let a two goal lead slip after Theophanous and Hall put the K’s in command, however the hosts scored twice in seven second-half minutes to secure a draw.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 4 / Kingstonian wins: 1 / Draws: 1

Current Form (* – F.A Cup)

Dartford (WWLWWL) Kingstonian (DWDWLW)
Oxford City A 1-0 Carshalton Athletic A 2-2
Blackfield & Langley* A 4-1 Weston-super-Mare* A 4-1
Slough Town H 2-3 Weston-super-Mare* H 1-1
Horsham* A 2-0 Haringey Borough A 1-0
Concord Rangers A 2-0 Worthing A 1-2
Dorking Wanderers H 3-4 March Town United* H 3-0

Previous Meetings (* – F.A Cup / ^ – F.A Trophy)

24.11.2012^ Kingstonian 0 Dartford 4
10.04.2010 Kingstonian 2 Dartford 6
25.08.2009 Dartford 5 Kingstonian 0
07.04.2007 Kingstonian 1 Dartford 1
26.08.2006 Dartford 1 Kingstonian 0
06.10.1973* Dartford 1 Kingstonian 3

Stats

Dartford have played Kingstonian in the F.A Cup once back in 1973. The Darts lost 3-1 in the second qualifying round, the K’s were knocked out of the competition in the next round.

Dartford have scored six and conceded one from their two F.A Cup games this season. The K’s have scored ten in four F.A Cup games conceding just twice.

Kingstonian last reached the fourth qualifying round in 2001 and in that season,  they went on to reach the fourth round of the F.A Cup. The K’s beat Devizes Town 5-2 in the fourth qualifying round, then knocked out Brentford (3-1), Southport (2-1), Southend United (1-0) before losing to Bristol City in a replay (1-1, replay 0-1).

On This Day

Matthew Godden netted a Princes Park hat-trick six years ago in an entertaining 4-3 victory over Hyde. The loanee put the Darts two goals up within 15 minutes with a tidy finish and a header from Ryan Hayes’ cross. A penalty and a close range effort from Scott Spencer brought Hyde level before the break and a long-range shot from Louis Almond put them ahead. Substitute George Monger’s 25-yarder levelled things up, but Godden struck late on to seal the points. Dartford are unbeaten in seven on this day stretching back to 1991 recording three wins and four draws. The Darts last played on 19 October in 2015 when they beat Welling United in the first round of the Kent Senior Cup. George Sykes and Callum McNaughton gave the Darts a two goal cushion before Kurtis Cumberbatch netted for the Wings. Dajon Golding secured the cup victory in the final minute to put Dartford in the hat for round two.

Oxford City v Dartford

Celebrating Non-League Day, the Darts are back in National South action this weekend taking on Oxford City at Marsh Lane.

Dartford’s playoff ambitions ended at Saturday’s venue six months ago on the final day of last season. Ronnie Vint’s goal put fate in Dartford’s hands as they moved into the playoff places. Then in an eight-minute second half spell Zac McEachran and Kabongo Tshimanga ended Darts’ hopes of finishing in the top seven.

This time the Darts approach their trip with more confidence having won three of their last four matches in all competitions. A couple of 2-0 victories over Concord Rangers in the league and Horsham in the F.A Cup was followed up by a 3-2 reverse at home to Slough Town. On the weekend, Dartford continued their progress in the F.A Cup comfortably beating Southern Premier South side Blackfield and Langley to record their third consecutive away victory.

In charge of the third qualifying round tie, Tony Burman opted to play Cameron Brodie at right back to replace the departed Alex Flisher. Returning from suspension, Lee Noble was back in the team alongside Luke Allen and Tom Bonner came in at left back. Up front Darren McQueen made way for Adam Cunnington.

Charlie Sheringham almost opened the scoring after just three minutes, but his effort was ruled out for offside. However, the striker only had to wait a little longer when he linked up with Cunnington to score from close range. Luke Allen netted his second F.A Cup goal in as many games after a well worked move and just before half-time Mark Smith’s stunning save kept the score at 2-0. In the second-half, Allen won a penalty which Sheringham converted and despite the hosts pulling a goal back, Cunnington headed in the fourth which was to be his last for the club after he left by mutual consent this week.

As well as Brodie racking up more minutes, two other academy players featured as substitutes and were introduced. Alfie Evans showed promise in midfield and Jay Bacon replaced the injured Sheringham, who will now be out with a dislocated shoulder. In other team news, Rob Howard will be available for selection after missing the F.A Cup fixture to prevent getting cup tied. Jordan Wynter and Sam Blackman and  are moving towards full recoveries, Mark Onyemah could be fit after a knee injury. .

Oxford City beat the Darts twice at home last term also winning a F.A Cup fixture 4-1, Tshimanga’s hat-trick was the highlight of the cup tie. Since Dartford’s return to the National South in 2015, the Darts have only managed a single victory at Marsh Lane in five attempts. Elliot Bradbrook and Tom Murphy scored the goals to secure a 2-0 win back in March 2018.

Under the guidance of Mark Jones, Oxford City are level on points with Dartford with the same goal difference. Where the Darts have outscored Saturday’s opponents, the Hoops have a stronger defence. Winless in five league games, the Oxfordshire club last tasted victory in the National South on August’s Bank Holiday, their only home win and only other league triumph came two weeks earlier.

The latest reverse came in their last league fixture against Braintree Town. A first-half penalty was scored by Braintree Town’s Ade Cole and was enough to condemn the Hoops to their sixth defeat of the campaign. Either side the National South loss, Oxford City have progressed through to the F.A Cup fourth qualifying round scoring nine times without reply. Southern League Division One Central side north Leigh were beaten 7-0, goals coming from six different players and an own goal.

Jones’ side will take more confidence from last weekend’s third qualifying round win, especially as it was against fellow National South side Hampton and Richmond Borough. In a six minute second-half spell Nana Owusu netted from the spot and McEachran added a second to earn a fourth qualifying round tie with Margate.

Head to Head

Oxford City wins: 2 / Dartford wins: 4 / Draws: 2

Current League Form

Dartford (LWLLDD) Oxford City (LDLDLW)
Slough Town H 2-3 Braintree Town A 0-1
Concord Rangers A 2-0 Billericay Town H 2-2
Dorking Wanderers H 3-4 Wealdstone A 0-1
Tonbridge Angels A 2-3 Weymouth H 0-0
Hemel Hempstead Town H 1-1 Havant & Waterlooville H 0-3
Hungerford Town A 2-2 Bath City A 2-1

Last Six Meetings

27.04.2019 Oxford City 2 Dartford 1
13.11.2018 Dartford 3 Oxford City 2
06.10.2018 Oxford City 4 Dartford 1
24.03.2018 Oxford City 0 Dartford 2
19.08.2017 Dartford 7 Oxford City 1
25.02.2017 Oxford City 1 Dartford 1

Stats

Dartford are on a three game winning run in all competitions, the last time they won for four straight away matches was from 17 February 2018 to 4 August 2018. The Darts won their last five away games in the 2017/2018 campaign and the opening away match last season.

The Darts have scored two or more goals in each of their last six outings, they last managed that in September 2017. They last managed two or more goals in seven consecutive games the year before during September and October of 2016

The Darts have lost their last two games at Marsh Lane and have won once in their last five attempts at Oxford City.

On This Day

Dartford last tasted defeat on 12 October in 1963 and since then they have played six, won three and drew three. The last two fixtures on this day ended all square in normal time with the most recent six years ago against Hereford United. The National League match finished 2-2 with Lee Noble opening the scoring before Kevin Krans and Ross Dyer put the hosts ahead. A point was rescued when Uche Ibemere’s late goal made sure of the draw. Nine years ago, a dramatic evening saw Dartford beat Canvey Island on penalties after playing out an enthralling 3-3 F.A Cup third qualifying round replay. Danny Harris, Carl Rook and Paul Goodacre put the Darts 3-1 up, but they let the lead slip as Canvey Island forced extra time then penalties, the shoot-out finished 9-8.

Blackfield and Langley v Dartford

Dartford can go one step further than last season in the F.A Cup with victory at Blackfield and Langley this weekend.

The Darts travel to the New Forest to take on the Southern Premier South side, who have won back to back league titles. Under Tony Burman’s leadership, the Darts reached the first round in his last two campaigns before defeat at this stage last term under Adam Flanagan and Jamie Coyle.

In the previous round an away victory at Horsham saw the Darts progress to the third qualifying stage for the tenth time in the last eleven seasons. In both halves the Darts had to leave it late to find the back of the Horsham net and with the excellent goalkeeping performance of Mark Smith avoided a cup upset. Darren McQueen acrobatically opened the scoring three minutes before the interval, whilst Luke Allen secured victory towards the end of the cup tie in a 2-0 win.

Burman, who guided Dartford to five first round appearances can draw experience on playing lower league opposition. Four years ago, his side were knocked out by Uxbridge despite sitting two divisions below the Darts. Since then Dartford have won their last seven against lower league teams, but none of them carried the momentum gained by Blackfield and Langley in recent years.

Since the second qualifying round win a fortnight ago, Dartford were back in National South action at home to Slough Town. Jordan Wynter was ruled out with an injury, so Rob Howard returned to the starting eleven, the only other change was Luke Wanadio coming in for Luke Allen. A first half spell saw three goals in four minutes, but the Darts will be disappointed in the fact they threw away a two-goal lead to lose 3-2. Darren McQueen guided Charlie Sheringham’s header into the net to score his third goal of the season and a minute later Josh Hill headed home a free-kick. Slough Town hit back through Dan Roberts and in the second half they completed a comeback with goals from Matthew Lench and Ben Harris.

Howard was not permitted to play in the last round being on loan from Southend United, Lee Noble returns from suspension, Mark Onyemah and Sam Blackman are still recovering from long term injuries, a return is getting closer. Stand in full back, Alex Flisher has left the club to join Steve Watt’s Hythe Town, the striker was forced to play at full back this term after recovering from a dislocated shoulder in pre-season. Flisher made nine appearances for the Darts scoring his only goal in the 2-0 win at Concord Rangers three weeks ago.

Blackfield and Langley will equal their best performance in the competition if they cause a cup upset and will be one game away from a debut appearance in the first round. The Watersiders have already negotiated three rounds starting in August.

In the preliminary round Blackfield and Langley were drawn against the 2007 F.A Vase runners up AFC Totton. A second half brace from top scorer Lerone Plummer made sure the Watersiders advanced. The striker opened the scoring before Fatah Makhloufi missed a penalty to double the lead. AFC Totton levelled the tie through Craig Feeney, but Plummer scored the winner with four minutes to play.

The New Forest side made light work in the first qualifying round breezing past Mangotsfield United securing a 5-0 victory. Shaquille Gwengwe scored either side of Charlie Gunson’s effort and Hisham Kasimu netted from the spot to give Blackfield and Langley a 4-0 half-time lead. Devane Bongou added a fifth late in the second half to earn the Watersiders a second qualifying round tie against Dorchester Town.

It took Gunson’s spectacular long-range shot was enough to see Blackfield and Langley see off the Magpies. With the game heading to a replay, Gunson unleashed a shot eleven minutes from time which ended in the top corner. The Hampshire club had the chance to make victory certain from a spot kick, but Plummer’s shot was saved then he blasted his rebound over.

Since their last F.A Cup game, the Watersiders have lost consecutive Southern Premier South fixtures including a 3-1 loss at Harrow Borough in which former Dart, Luke Warner-Eley grabbed a goal for Borough. A 2-0 reverse at Beaconsfield Town was followed by a League Cup triumph over AFC Totton once again.

Current Form (all competitions * – F.A Cup / ^ – League Cup)

Dartford (LWWLLD) Blackfield & Langley (WWWDLW)
Slough Town H 2-3 AFC Totton^ H 2-1
Horsham* A 2-0 Beaconsfield Town A 0-2
Concord Rangers A 2-0 Harrow Borough A 1-3
Dorking Wanderers H 3-4 Dorchester Town* H 1-0
Tonbridge Angels A 2-3 Farnborough H 2-0
Hemel Hempstead Town H 1-1 Mangotsfield United* A 5-0

On This Day

Andy Pugh and Duane Ofori-Acheampong helped Dartford come from behind in their last cup tie on 5 October. The Kent Senior Cup first round fixture with Cray Wanderers ended 2-1 three years ago. In 2002, the Darts went out of the F.A Trophy at the preliminary stage losing at Salisbury city 2-0. The defeat in Wiltshire was sandwiched between two league losses on this day, in 1996 Dartford were beaten 5-3 versus Weymouth in the Southern League South and six years ago 2-0 at Gateshead in the National League. One notable victory was Dartford’s 5-0 triumph in National League over Kidderminster Harriers back in 1985, whilst the last F.A Cup tie the Darts played on the 5 October was the 2-1 second qualifying round win at Dagenham in 1968.

Dartford v Slough Town

Dartford are back in National South action this weekend hosting a Slough Town side unbeaten in their last nine games in all competitions.

The Darts are starting to look more like their old self since the return of interim manager Tony Burman picking up two victories in their last three outings. Under Burman, Dartford lost to Dorking Wanderers but still managed to score three and followed up the improved performance with a pair of 2-0 wins.

In their last National South fixture Dartford managed to triumph on the road for the first time in ten attempts. Charlie Sheringham opened the scoring after four minutes and Alex Flisher scored his first for the club, whilst the defence kept a first away clean sheet since early February.

Dartford’s defence hasn’t been breached in the last 183 minutes of football. Another 2-0 victory over Isthmian Premier league side Horsham, in the second qualifying round of the F.A Cup, has seen the back line receive plenty of praise from Burman, he spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk and was impressed with the attitude of his players, he said: “We’re getting a bit of belief in the players, what they should do and how they should do it. I know we’ve got the quality in the squad it’s just bringing out the work-rate, that bit of hunger and desire. We put our bodies on the line and that attitude was great throughout the game”.

The Darts made one change to the side that defeated Concord Rangers with the young Cameron Brodie starting and Rob Howard making way, Lee Noble was suspended for a second game of his three match ban and will miss this weekend’s fixture against Slough Town. Darren McQueen retained his starting place and was rewarded by scoring the opener just before half-time, Luke Allen secured victory late on, helping Dartford earn a third qualifying round tie against Southern Premier League South side Blackfield and Langley. It wasn’t all comfortable for the Darts as Mark Smith’s inspired performance between the sticks kept Horsham at bay.

Slough Town increased their unbeaten run to nine with a F.A Cup win over Hellenic Premier League side Flackwell Heath last weekend. Ben Harris scored twice before Manny Williams sealed the deal in a 3-0 win. Joint Manager, Jon Underwood claimed his team were ‘very professional’, he told www.sloughtown.net: “These games are never easy, but our attitude was spot on”.

In the National South, the Rebels got off to a poor start losing their opening three matches all by single goal margins. However consecutive draws steadied the ship and since then Slough Town’s season has taken off. The Berkshire club have taken 16 points from their the last 18 available making them the second best team over the last six fixtures, only table toppers Wealdstone are showing better form.

Last season, Andre Coker earned Dartford a point at home when they hosted Slough Town. The visitors took the in the first half with a fine striker from Josh Jackman. The return fixture saw the two sides draw again, this time the score was 2-2. Ben Harris scored in the first minute, Ben Greenhalgh equalised and Darren McQueen netted on his debut. The Rebels were all square again courtesy of Sean Fraser as the match ended with the sides taking a point each.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 3 / Slough Town wins: 0 / Draws: 2

Current League Form

Dartford (WLLDDW) Slough Town (WWWDWW)
Concord Rangers A 2-0 Hampton & Richmond H 3-1
Dorking Wanderers H 3-4 Eastbourne Borough A 2-0
Tonbridge Angels A 2-3 Hemel Hempstead Town H 2-0
Hemel Hempstead Town H 1-1 St Albans City H 1-1
Hungerford Town A 2-2 Dulwich Hamlet A 3-2
Braintree Town H 2-1 Bath City H 3-2

Last Five Meetings

16.02.2019 Slough Town 2 Dartford 2
08.12.2018 Dartford 1 Slough Town 1
01.10.2016 Slough Town 2 Dartford 3
29.10.1988 Slough Town 1 Dartford 2
10.01.1981 Dartford 4 Slough Town 1

Stats

Dartford have never lost to Slough Town winning three and drawing two of the five meetings stretching back to 1981.

In each game between the two sides both teams have scored, leading to an average of 3.8 goals per game.

On This Day

This weekend will be Dartford’s seventh home game in a row played on 28 September in which they have won three and lost three. The Darts most recently beat Southport in the National League six years ago thanks to Adam Birchall’s winner. Previously Dartford lost a pair of Southern League East matches in 2004 against Chatham Town (1-0) and in 2002 they lost 2-0 to Histon. In 1998, the Darts defeated Bashley in the Southern League South and year earlier they went out at the F.A Cup second qualifying stage versus Staines Town. Whilst in 1996, Dartford beat Fleet Town 1-0, also in the Southern League South.

Horsham v Dartford

Dartford’s F.A Cup adventure begins this weekend with an away trip to a new ground against Isthmian Premier League side Horsham.

Twenty seven years on from the game that never was, the Darts travel to the runners up of last season’s Isthmian Division One South East . Starting from the second qualifying stage Dartford will be hoping progression in the competition will set them on their way in the F.A Cup. Horsham won promotion last term via the playoffs, moved back home and are now sitting fourth place in their league and are hoping to cause an upset.

It’s the second time the two clubs have met in the F.A Cup and the last time it happened a replay was required to settle the tie. A preliminary round tie in 1996 pitted the newly promoted Darts of the Southern League South up against the Hornets, who had secured the Isthmian Division Three title in their previous campaign. A 1-1 draw at Park View Road, Belverdere was followed up with a 1-0 defeat two days later as Horsham went on to reach the second qualifying round.

Rewind four years earlier and the pair were drawn against each other and due to meet in a first qualifying round tie. Even with the financial problems Dartford were suffering they started the 1992-1993 season, but after just four league games Dartford ceased footballing activities meaning Horsham progressed to the next game without kicking a ball.

Nowadays, the Darts are one tier above the Sussex club and since reformation and the F.A Cup exit in 1996 they have won four of the last five fixtures. The last meeting completed a league double against Horsham during the Isthmian Premier League title campaign. The Hornets will be pleased Elliot Bradbrook retired in the summer, the former Dartford captain scored four times against them. In March 2010, Bradbrook recorded a brace and Allan Tait scored the other in a 3-1 away victory. Seven months earlier Dartford won at Princes Park 3-2, Bradbrook scoring either side of former boss Adam Flanagan’s goal. In the campaign before the Darts hit seven without reply winning 4-0 at home, both Brendon Cass and Lee Noble scoring twice and 3-0 at Horsham, a goal from Ryan Hayes and a Cody McDonald double. The hornets did have something to cheer winning an Isthmian League Cup fixture 3-2 in the fourth round.

Adam Cunnington will be available for selection after serving his one match ban for five cautions, the striker missed the 2-0 away triumph at Concord Rangers last weekend in the National South. Victory moved the Darts up to eighteenth as they ended a run of nine away games without a win. Charlie Sheringham opened the scoring after four minutes and Alex Flisher scored his first Dartford goal. Lee Noble’s red card against Dorking Wanderers means he will miss the second game of his three match ban, whilst Sam Blackman and Mark Onyemah are still recovering from long term injuries.

Horsham have already navigated through two rounds starting from the preliminary stage. The Sussex club trounced Tower Hamlets 6-1 to get their F.A Cup journey on the move. Goals from Will Miles, Zack Newton, Jared Rance, a brace from Chris Smith and an own goal from Hamlets defender Alan Zukolli made sure Dom Di Paolo’s side progressed with ease. The first qualifying round tie against Metropolitan Police was quite the opposite and the Hornets needed a second attempt to beat their opponents. Drawn away from home Smith opened the scoring, but Oliver Knight forced a replay. The sides met again for the first F.A Cup fixture at the new Community Stadium and a dramatic last minute winner from Smith earned Horsham their first competitive win at their new home. Although the Police took the lead, Harvey Sparks equalised before half-time and just after the break Smith put Horsham in front. Metropolitan Police looked to have forced the tie into extra time with nine minutes to play until once again, Smith found the net to take his F.A Cup tally to five goals in three games.

In league competition, the Hornets have settled into their new division well despite a drawing their opening two games. They beat Enfield Town and Lewes before suffering their only defeat against league leaders Folkestone Invicta. Since then they have won their last two Isthmian Premier League fixtures against Brightlingsea Regent on the weekend and versus Wingate and Finchley on Tuesday night. Smith is the man to watch, the striker has scored seven times this month in four appearances, including a hat-trick against Brightlingsea Regent.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 5 / Horsham wins: 2 / Draws: 2

Current Form (all competitions * – F.A Cup)

Dartford (WLLDDW) Horsham (WWWDLW)
Concord Rangers A 2-0 Wingate & Finchley H 2-1
Dorking Wanderers H 3-4 Brightlingsea Regent A 4-0
Tonbridge Angels A 2-3 Metropolitan Police* H 3-2
Hemel Hempstead Town H 1-1 Metropolitan Police* A 1-1
Hungerford Town A 2-2 Folkestone Invicta H 0-1
Braintree Town H 2-1 Lewes A 2-0

Previous Meetings (* – F.A Cup / ^ – F.A Trophy / ~ – Isthmian League Cup)

18.03.2010 Horsham 1 Dartford 3
15.08.2009 Dartford 3 Horsham 2
18.02.2009~ Horsham 3 Dartford 2
24.01.2009 Horsham 0 Dartford 3
20.09.2008 Dartford 4 Horsham 0
03.09.1996* Horsham 1 Dartford 0
01.09.1996* Dartford 1 Horsham 1
18.01.1977^ Dartford 3 Horsham 1
15.01.1977^ Horsham 2 Dartford 2

Stats

The winning side in this fixture has scored three or more goals in the last five meetings. In four of those five games a player has scored a brace (Elliot Bradbrook on two occasions, Lee Noble and Brendon Cass in the same game and Cody McDonald).

Dartford had gone 12 games without a clean sheet away from home before the 2-0 win on the weekend. The run dated back to 5 February when the Darts beat Woking 1-0.

The Darts have made the F.A Cup first round in five of the last nine seasons, including a run to the second round in 2014.

Dartford’s exit at the third qualifying round last time was their earliest since 2009, the Darts last went out at the second qualifying stage in 2008.

Horsham’s best run in the F.A Cup was in 2007-2008 when they took Swansea City to a second round replay, the 6-2 loss was their eighth F.A Cup game that season.

On This Day

Dartford defeated Kidderminster Harriers on this day in 2013 to end a four game winless run in the National League. Jason Prior scored from close range, Elliot Bradbrook doubled the lead and Danny Harris sealed an emphatic 3-0 win. The Darts last won an away game on 21 September whilst competing in the Kent League back in 1993, when they beat Corinthian 2-0. Between the two victories spanning twenty years Dartford drew 1-1 away against Newport Isle of Wight in 1996 and lost 3-0 at Salisbury City in 2002. The Darts last F.A Cup game on this day was in 1971 when they went out in a first qualifying round replay versus Waltham and Hersham.

Concord Rangers v Dartford

The Darts are back in action this weekend chasing their first away win of the season against fifth place Concord Rangers.

Tony Burman will remain in the hotseat as interim manager, until the club find a suitable candidate to replace previous joint managers Adam Flanagan and Jamie Coyle. Last weekend, Burman began his stint in charge in defeat as seven goals were shared with newly promoted Dorking Wanderers.

Angonisingly the final six minutes at Princes Park proved pivotal as the Darts tried to hold on to a crucial lead. Two changes were made to the starting elevn after the 3-2 loss at Tonbridge Angels, Charlie Sheringham replaced Norma Wabo to start with striker Adam Cunnington for the first time and Jordan Wynter returned to the line up with loanee Rob Howard stepping aside. Although the Darts started brightly, the visitors were in front after 12 minutes when Niall McManus hit a brilliant long range effort beyond Mark Smith. Dartford went ahead with Ben Greenhalgh’s quick fire brace, his first goals of the campaign. However, in first half stoppage time Dartford conceded a penalty and former Dart, Jason Prior equalised.

The second half had more goals in store, Ryan Hayes and Luke Allen combined well before Hayes put in a delightful cross for Sheringham to score. In the closing stages during a six minute spell the match turned dramatically, former Woking striker Guiseppe Sole levelled with a brilliant free-kick, Lee Noble was harshly sent off and with two minutes on the clock James McShane grabbed Dorking Wanderers a winner.

Burman praised his side work ethic, he spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk and said: “I was delighted with the effort the players put in”, before questioning some important decisions from the match officials, he added: “The penalty decision against us I can say is a poor goal in respect of the way we defended. Was it a penalty? I honestly don’t think it was”, he continued: “No-one thought it was a sending-off other than their bench. I wouldn’t say they got him sent-off but their reaction wasn’t good and it shouldn’t be like that. It was a poor decision”. Aside from getting the rub of the green, Burman also pinpointed where the Darts can improve, he exclaimed: “I have to question a few of them who haven’t played. I thought the fitness was down from what it should be. That’s no disrespect to anybody, I’m just giving an honest opinion”.

Around the club there has been plenty of focus off the pitch including the role Burman has with the first team, he commented: “The long-term is not for me”, he added: “I am happy with what I do at the club in the academy during the daytime and that’s my goal now”. Whoever the successful applicant is in however long it takes to find the right boss, they will need to strengthen a defence that has conceded the most goals in the division. In contrast to the previous season at least the Darts are starting to put the ball in the oppositions net with more frequency, scoring five in their last two defeats.

Burman was pleased with Sheringham’s performance last weekend and Greenhalgh made it in the National South’s team of the week. Luke Wanadio was out injured, Sam Blackman is starting to do fitness work and Mark Onyemah is getting closer to a return. Adam Cunnington is banned for one game after picking up too many cautions and Lee Noble starts a three match suspension after his red card.

Concord Rangers have started their campaign brightly building on their success last term under Sammy Moore. The Beachboys reached the playoff places but were unable to participate due to league rules. Moore left in the summer and his replacement Danny Scopes has kept the momentum going. The Essex club won their opening three matches to top the table, but then suffered three defeats in four picking up a single point. Concord Rangers have recovered since are currently unbeaten in their last three matches beating Welling United and Hampton and Richmond Borough either side of a draw against local rivals Braintree Town.

In their last two games the Essex club have scored vital late goals, Marcel Barrington scored a brace to help his side win 3-2 last weekend. Barrington was in the Braintree Town side along with Dartford’s Josh Hill, Billy Crook and Luke Allen that beat the Darts in the playoffs just over a year ago. After the victory, defender Joe Claridge commented via the club’s Twitter account: “It’s a great three points…it wasn’t ideal going behind but it shows the character of this set of players, even though we were 2-1 down the management team still believed we could get three points”, he continued: “We are ten games in and in a good place, not only looking at the table and on the pitch, but as a team”.

Billy Roast will return to Princes Park, the defender made seven appearances for the Darts last term after he followed Adam Flanagan from the Beachboys to Dartford, but this summer he made his return to Concord Rangers via Maldon and Tiptree. Roast was in the Dartford team that lost to Concord Rangers last term, whilst Ryan Hayes was lining up against the Darts alongside Sam Blackman. The Beachboys won 2-0 with former Dart, Alex Wall scoring as well as D’Sean Theobalds. The return fixture ended 1-1 at Princes Park with former Concord Rangers midfielder, Greenhalgh opening the scoring and Jack Midson equalising from the spot.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 4 / Concord Rangers wins: 2 / Draws: 3

Current League Form

Dartford (LLDDWL) Concord Rangers (WDWLLD)
Dorking Wanderers H 3-4 Hampton & Richmond H 3-2
Tonbridge Angels A 2-3 Braintree Town A 2-2
Hemel Hempstead Town H 1-1 Welling United H 3-0
Hungerford Town A 2-2 St Albans City A 1-2
Braintree Town H 2-1 Maidstone United H 0-1
Weymouth A 1-3 Dulwich Hamlet A 2-2

Last Six Meetings

26.01.2019 Dartford 1 Concord Rangers 1
14.08.2018 Concord Rangers 2 Dartford 0
06.01.2018 Concord Rangers 1 Dartford 1
15.08.2017 Dartford 2 Concord Rangers 0
11.03.2017 Concord Rangers 1 Dartford 1
24.09.2016 Dartford 2 Concord Rangers 1

Stats

For the first time, last season Dartford failed to beat Concord Rangers in at least one of their league games against them.

Concord Rangers are unbeaten in their last three games against Dartford, their longest unbeaten run versus the Darts.

Dartford have picked up one point out of their last nine away games, drawing one and losing eight going back to March last season.

In nine of Dartford’s ten games this season both teams have scored, the exception being on the opening day at Wealdstone.

On This Day

Louis Moult scored a brace to defeat Dartford six years ago at Princes Park, the striker’s double helped Nuneaton Town to a 2-1 victory in the National League, Elliot Bradbrook scoring a consolation for the Darts. In 2003, Dartford progressed in the F.A Cup with a 3-0 home victory over Peacehaven and Telscombe, the Darts went out in the next round against Bromley. A home friendly at Summer’s Meadow, Lowfield Street versus Pickwicks way back in 1895 saw Dartford rack up ten goals without reply on this day.

Dartford v Dorking Wanderers

Dartford’s era without Adam Flanagan and Jamie Coyle begins this weekend when they welcome Isthmian Premier League champions Dorking Wanderers to Princes Park, in the first ever clash between the two sides.

Tony Burman will be back in the dugout for the first time since he quit as manager fourteen months ago. The 61-year-old takes over on an interim basis for the third time and has previously led the Darts to two league titles, a playoff promotion and a couple of Kent Senior Cup triumphs. Since Princes Park opened in 2006, Burman guided Dartford from the Isthmian Division One to the National League, experienced relegation back to the National South and agonisingly missed out on a third league title before leaving as manager.

Ahead of Tuesday night’s game Flanagan reflected on his team’s performance, the joint manager expected a points tally good enough for a top seven spot, but the club has fallen short, he told www.dartfordfc.com: “It has been a frustrating August for everyone involved at the club and our points return hasn’t been to the level we had set”. By the end of Tuesday night, the Darts were looking for their first away win and a new manager.

Defeat at Tonbridge Angels signalled the end of the management duo, who left by mutual consent following the 3-2 loss at Longmead. Continuing from last season Dartford were beginning to rely on home form and searching for improvements, with only two wins from their last 17 league games. The Kent derby against Tonbridge Angels, who were also in the bottom three, became a great opportunity to find that elusive away victory. In came Norman Wabo to the starting eleven, after his three goals in four substitute appearances, Ryan Hayes and Ben Greenhalgh, replacing Darren McQueen, Luke Wanadio and the injured Tom Bonner.

Tonbridge Angels took the lead from the penalty spot, Joe Turner putting his shot past Mark Smith. Falling a goal behind livened Dartford up for the final fifteen minutes of the first half. The Darts were rewarded with an equaliser when Josh Hill pounced on a clearance to make it all square. However, almost straight from the restart the Angels regained their advantage through Turner once more. Charlie Sheringham came on for the second half and made an impact later on with a headed goal, however the Angels edged in front with five to play, Tom Derry scoring the winner.

After the disappointing result, co-chairman Dave Skinner spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk about Flanagan and Coyle’s resignation, he explained: “They’re both stalwarts of the club and have got the club at heart – the same as we have”, he added: “They had a target to meet and they haven’t reached the target. We changed the squad from last season. On paper the squad is very good but somehow it just hasn’t worked. For the quality of the squad we’ve got, we’d expect to be higher up than we are”.

As well as Bonner picking up a groin injury against Hemel Hempstead Town, Sam Blackman remains out with a broken ankle and Mark Onyemah is fairly close to a return after his summer operation, former boss Flanagan commented last week: “Mark has completed one full training session which is a real positive and the hope is that he will be ready to get some match minutes in the next two or three weeks”. Andy Pugh and Billy Crook are out on loan at East Thurrock United, unfortunately the pair picked up injuries in their opening couple of matches for the Essex club.

Jason Prior returns to Princes Park and could lead the line for Dorking Wanderers, the striker top scored for the Surrey club in their title winning season and leads the way this term. The 30-year-old caused heartbreak for Darts fans almost 18 months ago. Prior played 24 times for Dartford during 2013 and scored twice, five years later he scored a dramatic last-minute winner for Havant and Waterlooville, snatching the National South title away from the Darts on the final day.

His latest club has been on the rise winning promotion five times in nine seasons to propel themselves up from the Sussex League Division Three to the National South. Momentum has been with the Wanderers and as recently as July 2018 they moved in to the refurbished Meadowbank Park, formerly home of the disbanded Dorking F.C. Manager, Marc White matches the club’s ambitions of going further up the football pyramid and is a founder member of the club.

White’s side started their first ever campaign in the National South how they finished their championship winning season. Three straight victories at Slough Town and at home to Hemel Hempstead Town, then Tonbridge Angels had the newcomers joint top, the winning streak continuing from last term was stretched to nine consecutive league wins.

However, the Wanderers came down with a heavy bump losing 6-0 to Havant and Waterlooville, the beginning of a winless run. Although Dorking Wanderers bounced back with a point at St Albans City they fell to defeats at home to Hampton and Richmond, then away to Braintree Town. Last weekend they drew 0-0 with Dulwich Hamlet and on Tuesday night they ended their winless streak with victory at home against Chippenham Town, Matthew Briggs netting the winner.

Injuries haven’t helped the Surrey club recently, with last season’s Player of the Year and Club Captain Sami-El Abd rupturing a cruciate ligament, ruling him out for the rest of the campaign. Manager, White was devastated at the news, he told www.dorkingwanderers.com: “Sami is absolutely gutted as is everyone involved in the club. He is our on-the-pitch leader and will be a huge loss for us this season”. Ed Harris and Luke Moore are likely to be out for a couple more weeks and Lewis Taylor for longer with a groin injury.

Current League Form

Dartford (LDDWLL) Dorking Wanderers (WDLLDL)
Tonbridge Angels A 2-3 Chippenham Town H 1-0
Hemel Hempstead Town H 1-1 Dulwich Hamlet H 0-0
Hungerford Town A 2-2 Braintree Town A 2-3
Braintree Town H 2-1 Hampton & Richmond H 0-1
Weymouth A 1-3 St Albans City A 1-1
Chelmsford City A 0-4 Havant and Waterlooville A 0-6

Stats

Dartford have made their worst league start in five years picking up just seven points from nine games. In 2013, the Darts picked up six points in the National League after nine matches (W1, D3, L5).

The Darts are four games unbeaten at home this season (W1, D3) and have lost just once in the league at Princes Park since early December 2018 (W8, D7, L1).

Under Flanagan and Coyle, Dartford’s home record in the National South was Won 9, Drawn 9, Lost 3, but the away form reads Won 6, Drawn 5, Lost 15. In all competitions Dartford Won 20, Drew 15, Lost 21.

Dartford used 47 players in all competitions during Flanagan and Coyle’s fourteen months in charge.

On This Day

The last time a goal was scored in a Dartford game on 7 September was 22 years ago. The Darts beat Clevedon Town 3-1 in the Southern League South Division. The last two fixtures on this day have ended 0-0 both away from home, Fleet Town in 2002 and Chester six years ago in the National League. Currently Dartford are on an unbeaten run of six matches on 7 September stretching back to 1987 when they lost 3-0 away to Chelmsford City in the Southern Premier League. The last home defeat on this day was back in 1964 against Margate, a Southern League Cup tie.

Tonbridge Angels v Dartford

In search for a their first away victory of the campaign, Dartford travel to Longmead Stadium on Tuesday night to take on Tonbridge Angels.

It will be the first Kent derby in a league fixture between the two sides in seven years, although in that time they have met in the F.A Trophy and F.A Cup. The Darts will be hoping that their current form against the Angels will count for something as both sides are struggling to pick up victories this term. Dartford have won eight in a row in all competitions against the Isthmian Premier League playoff winners of last season.

Most recently, Dartford recorded a pair of 3-0 cup victories over the Angels. Three years ago, Alex Brown, Andy Pugh and Elliot Bradbrook put the Darts into the F.A Cup first round and in 2012, Harry Crawford, Bradbrook and Jon Wallis helped Dartford into the F.A Trophy third round.

Dartford last visited Longmead Stadium in the league in March 2012, Tom Champion scored the winner. The Darts beat Tonbridge Angels three times in that season, winning 4-2 after extra-time in the Kent Senior Cup last eight, goals from Jack Pallen, a brace from Richard Graham and one from Lee Burns. Whilst at Princes Park in September 2011, Dartford ran out 3-1 winners goals courtesy of Bradbrook, Danny Harris and Charlie Sheringham with the visitors grabbing a consolation goal when striker Frannie Collin scored from the penalty spot.

The Darts picked up a second successive draw on the weekend against Hemel Hempstead Town, once again Norman Wabo came of the bench to score. With the departure of promising young full-back Luke Warner-Eley, Dartford started captain Tom Bonner at left back and Ronnie Vint returned to the starting eleven after he had recovered from being ill over the Bank Holiday.

Despite the change at the back, Dartford still conceded early on when Sam Ashford lofted an effort over Mark Smith on just nine minutes. The Darts won a penalty just past the half hour mark when Adam Cunnington was fouled in the box, the striker dusted himself off to take the spot kick but was denied by Tudors goalkeeper Sam Beasant. Shortly afterwards Bonner was forced off through injury and replaced by Ben Greenhalgh. Dartford improved in the second half, even more so in the final twenty minutes and with six minutes remaining Wabo equalised, his third of the campaign to maintain Dartford’s unbeaten home run.

Bonner will have to see if his fit for Tuesday night’s fixture at Tonbridge Angels, but at least defender Jordan Wynter will return from his three match suspension. Sam Blackman is still out with a long term injury, whilst Luke Warner-Eley and Amos Nasha have left the club.

Tonbridge Angels moved off the foot of the table in their last home match with a 1-1 draw against Weymouth. Prior the match manager, Steve McKimm spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk about the position his side are in since winning promotion almost four months ago, the Angels boss is not prepared to press the panic button at such an early stage, he commented: “After 20 games we’ll assess where we are and what we need to do”, he added: “Make no bones about it, if we are in desperate trouble I know this club will be able to find some resources for me to be able to go and keep us afloat. We haven’t worked hard for five years to get to this level to go straight back down and the club haven’t either”.

In a gritty performance, the Angels added a point to their league total, however the second half was just three minutes old when Weymouth’s Brett Williams put the Terras in front. Steve McKimm’s side won a disputed penalty and after they eventually decided Joe Turner should take the spot kick, he had his effort saved. A second penalty was awarded with five minutes to go and this time Ade Yussuf had a go, after his first spot-kick was ruled out for encroachment he put his second attempt away. Afterwards, McKimm told www.tonbridgeangels.co.uk: “I’m very pleased with the performance, we passed the ball much better today, and cut out the errors. Perhaps I’m a little disappointed we didn’t take all the points but all the players did really well and once again have shown we can compete at this level”.

Life back in the National South started with three straight defeats for the Angels until they recorded their maiden win against Concord Rangers at Longmead. A creditable draw away to Bath City was followed up by no points over the Bank Holiday period, McKimm’s side lost to Havant and Waterlooville then the Kent derby at Welling United. However, the draw with Weymouth was their fifth point, two behind the Darts.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 67 / Tonbridge Angels wins: 37 / Draws: 24

Current League Form

Dartford (DDWLLD) Tonbridge Angels (DLLDWL)
Hemel Hempstead Town H 1-1 Weymouth H 1-1
Hungerford Town A 2-2 Welling United A 2-4
Braintree Town H 2-1 Havant & Waterlooville H 1-3
Weymouth A 1-3 Bath City A 0-0
Chelmsford City A 1-4 Concord Rangers H 1-0
Havant and Waterlooville H 1-1 Dorking Wanderers A 1-3

Last Six Meetings

15.10.2016 Tonbridge Angels 0 Dartford 3
15.12.2012 Dartford 3 Tonbridge Angels 0
03.03.2012 Tonbridge Angels 0 Dartford 1
31.01.2012 Tonbridge Angels 2 Dartford 4
24.09.2011 Dartford 3 Tonbridge Angels 1
25.01.2011 Dartford 2 Tonbridge Angels 0

Stats

The Darts have not conceded in this fixture in the last three meetings and have won the last eight versus the Angels.

Dartford top scorer, Norman Wabo has scored all three of his goals after starting as a substitute.

Tonbridge Angels last beat the Darts in November 2008 and have never won at Princes Park since it opened.

Only bottom side Hungerford Town (-10) has a worse goal difference than Dartford and Tonbridge Angels (-8).

Only Chippenham Town (6) have scored fewer goals than the Angels (7) in the National South.

On This Day

Dartford last won a league game on the 3 September back in 1997 when they beat Baldock Town 2-1 in the Southern League Southern Division. The Darts have managed to win a couple of cup ties, in 2000 they beat Deal Town in the F.A Cup Preliminary Round (MORE?) and six years ago they defeated Welling United in the Kent Senior Cup 3-2. Mohamed Eisa scored for the Darts and since then he has made his name in the Football League at Cheltenham Town and now at Peterborough United, Adam Woodyard who also moved up the football pyramid netted as did Brima Daramy. Between those two victories Dartford had lost three in a row at Carterton in a F.A Cup replay seventeen years ago, away to Boreham Wood in the Southern League Division One East in 2005 and six years later at Basingstoke Town in the National South. The last game on this day was a 0-0 draw at home to eventual National South champions Maidenhead United in 2016.

Dartford v Hemel Hempstead Town

Dartford aim to protect their unbeaten home start of the season this weekend when they host second place Hemel Hempstead Town in the National South.

The Darts picked up four points from six over the Bank Holiday weekend beating Braintree Town 2-1 in the last match at Princes Park. Despite falling behind the Darts equalised through Luke Allen three minutes before the break. In the second half, the Iron were reduced to ten men before substitute Norma Wabo scored a late winner. On Monday, a late goal denied Dartford maximum Bank Holiday points in the  2-2 draw at Hungerford Town.

Dartford will see the opportunity as two points dropped having overturned a one goal deficit. Luke Warner-Eley returned to the starting eleven whilst Ronnie Vint missed the fixture through illness. Jordan Wynter was suspended and will serve the final game of his three match ban against Hemel Hempstead Town, and Sam Blackman remains a long term absentee. Charlie Sheringham was missing from the matchday squad on Monday and fellow striker, Andy Pugh has gone out on loan to East Thurrock United, where he netted a brace on his debut and completed the full ninety minutes.

Joint-manager Adam Flanagan told www.dartfordfc.com: “Andy Pugh has worked so hard to recover from his broken leg and he now needs to get his final sharpness by playing games. East Thurrock United will provide the competitiveness and opportunity to do this. We hope that he does well and that his move will get him back firing in goals ready for a return to full fitness and Dartford very soon”.

Flanagan and Jamie Coyle watched their side pick up an away point on Monday to end a run of seven consecutive away defeats in the National South, stretching back to March, the Darts last away victory was against Hemel Hempstead Town. The Crusaders took the lead when Zidan Akers put the hosts ahead after seven minutes. Darren McQueen recorded his first Dartford goal of the campaign in style with an acrobatic overhead kick and by half-time Luke Wanadio had given the Darts a one goal advantage. With two minutes to go, last season’s match winner Conor Lynch ensured the game ended 2-2. It was the fourth point gained in three days for the Darts taking their tally up to six, but they are down in the relegation places third from bottom with the joint worst goal difference.

Hemel Hempstead Town gained maximum points over the Bank Holiday weekend first dispatching Oxford City then defeating Billericay Town. The Tudors moved into second place and had they not just recently lost to Wealdstone they could have been joint top with the Stones. Debutante, Daniel Phillips scored early on against Oxford City, but the lead was cancelled out in the second half when Kyran Wiltshire scored a free-kick. Ricardo German made an instant impact when he arrived off the bench scoring the winner and his form continued two days later.

The Tudors took on Billericay town and faced a former favourite and their record scorer Jordan Parkes, but it was German who made the headlines. Hemel Hempstead Town left it until the last ten minutes to secure victory scoring three times with the first from Liam Nash. Once again, German started on the bench and he added a brace to take his tally to four goals in his last sixty minutes of football, his other strike was on the opening day of the season.

Princes Park will welcome back three former players Connor Essam, Tyrone Sterling and Alex Wall who were all in Dartford’s 2013/2014 squad. Essam captains the Tudors and has scored once this term, the defender had two loan spells with the Darts making a total of 14 appearances, eight of which was in his first spell when Dartford won promotion to the National League. Sterling had a single season with the Darts and made 36 appearances whilst on loan from Dover Athletic, the defender was signed by Hemel Hempstead Town from Concord Rangers. Wall has been out injured of late and also joined the Tudors in the summer from Concord Rangers. Just over a year ago he had signed for the Darts but left before the campaign began, the striker scored six times in 11 appearance during his loan spell five years ago.

New Tudors manager, Sammy Moore guided Concord Rangers to the playoffs last term going above expectations for the club, however the Essex club was unable to compete in the end of season showdown. Moore brought with him a few other players from his former side including forwards Liam Nash and Sam Ashford, as well as goalkeeper Sam Beasant.

Just over a year ago, Dartford and Hemel Hempstead Town played out a goalless draw at Princes Park. The last meeting between the two sides five months ago ended with a 2-1 win for the Darts. Phil Roberts scored twice against his former club in the final ten minutes either side of Jordan Parkes’ penalty.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 5 / Hemel Hempstead Town wins: 3 / Draws: 1

Current League Form

Dartford (DWLLDD) Hemel Hempstead Town (WWLWWL)
Hungerford Town A 2-2 Billericay Town H 3-0
Braintree Town H 2-1 Oxford City A 2-1
Weymouth A 1-3 Wealdstone H 0-3
Chelmsford City A 0-4 Dulwich Hamlet H 1-0
Havant and Waterlooville H 1-1 Hampton & Richmond A 2-1
St Albans City H 1-1 Dorking Wanderers A 1-3

Last Six Meetings

05.03.2019 Hemel Hempstead Town 1 Dartford 2
11.08.2018 Dartford 0 Hemel Hempstead Town 0
17.03.2018 Dartford 3 Hemel Hempstead Town 2
26.08.2017 Hemel Hempstead Town 0 Dartford 3
01.04.2017 Hemel Hempstead Town 2 Dartford 2
12.11.2016 Dartford 2 Hemel Hempstead Town 0

Stats

Since defeat to Hemel Hempstead Town on the opening day of the 2015/2016 campaign, the Darts have gone seven unbeaten against the Tudors.

At Princes Park, Dartford are unbeaten against the Tudors winning and drawing two.

On This Day

Dartford lost to local rivals Ebbsfleet United four years ago in the National South, a crowd of 2551 witnessed Jordan Parkes score the only goal of the game. The striker went on to return to Hemel Hempstead Town before leaving the club this summer. Ebbsfleet United’s line up that day included current Dartford captain Tom Bonner and Adam Cunnington came off the bench as a late substitute. Another former Dart, Matthew Godden started for the Fleet, the striker is now at Coventry City. In 2013, Elliot Bradbrook scored a consolation goal as the Darts lost 2-1 to Lincoln City in the National League. Dartford’s last win on this day was against AFC Hornchurch in the Isthmian Premier League, goals from Lee Burns and Bradbrook secured a 2-0 victory in the season that saw the Darts end up as champions.

Hungerford Town v Dartford

Dartford recorded their first win of the season on the weekend to give them confidence ahead of their Bank Holiday Monday trip to Hungerford Town.

Under pressure from results in the first five games of the campaign, joint manager Adam Flanagan highlighted the importance of getting positive results over the Bank Holiday weekend, he spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk and said: “We’ve got two big games coming up over the Bank Holiday and I think we need two wins”.

On Saturday, Dartford completed half of the mission with a 2-1 home win against Braintree Town. Norman Wabo opened his goalscoring account in the 3-1 reverse at Weymouth and despite defeat he admitted his first goal will help him find the net more regularly, he commented: “I feel like the weight on my shoulders has lifted and I can play freely and get a lot more goals for the club”. At a time when the Darts have been feeling the pressure, Wabo relishes the opportunity, he continued: “It’s better to go out when there’s a bit of pressure on you and the fans are watching. It tends to bring out the best in me”. The former Southend United man proved his claim with another strike in the home win on Saturday.

The Darts had to come from behind when a former player, Femi Akinwande gave the Iron an early lead. Dartford won a penalty with half hour played but the chance was squandered by Luke Wanadio, his shot saved by Michael Johnson. But the Darts fought back when former Braintree Town midfielder Luke Allen equalised and with three minutes remaining substitute, Wabo scored the winner. Victory over the Iron will provide the Darts with a much needed boost as they ended a run of eight without a win against the Essex club.

The return of Darren McQueen from his dislocated shoulder meant only Sam Blackman on the injury list before the Braintree Town game. Jordan Wynter was suspended and will serve the second of his three match ban against Hungerford Town. Wynter’s absence made way for Ronnie Vint’s first appearance of the season on Saturday, whilst Allen and Wanadio were back from injuries, Alex Flisher earned a starting place and Rob Howard made his debut, meaning Ryan Hayes and Ben Greenhalgh were dropped to the bench and Luke Warner-Eley missed out. Howard was signed prior the weekend from Southend United, the 19 year-old will spend a month on loan with the Darts.

In recent seasons Dartford have struggled when visiting Bulpit Lane, losing all three without scoring. A second victory in three days, against two teams they have previously found difficult to beat, will ease the pressure on joint managers Flanagan and Jamie Coyle. Last season the Darts lost 1-0 on their visit to the Crusaders, Conor Lynch scoring the winner.

Hungerford Town expected a tough season based on previous performances, aside from a sixth place finish in their first campaign at this level the Crusaders have staved off relegation going to the final day on each occasion. Ian Herring guided the Berkshire club to safety both times and this season his side have gained four points in the opening six fixtures.

Like Dartford, the Crusaders have picked up all their points from the three home games so far, beating Slough Town in their first match at Bulpit Lane this season. The experienced James Constable, who netted against Dartford for Eastleigh in the National League, has plenty of know how from his time in the Football League with various clubs. The 34-year-old got off the mark to find the winner against the Rebels and scored in the following 3-1 reverse against Maidstone United. In a local derby, Hungerford Town drew their third home games against Chippenham Town 1-1.

On the road, the Crusaders are still waiting to pick up a point and on Saturday they lost 3-1 to league leaders Wealdstone. Herring went for a more defensive approach playing five at the back, however with home advantage on Monday that formation could change to a more attacking approach. Hungerford Town have the second worst goal difference in the division behind Dartford and are just a point behind in the league standings, the Crusaders are second from bottom.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 2 / Hungerford Town wins: 3 / Draws: 1

Current League Form

Dartford (WLLDDL) Hungerford Town (LDLLWL)
Braintree Town H 2-1 Wealdstone A 1-3
Weymouth A 1-3 Chippenham Town H 1-1
Chelmsford City A 1-4 Bath City A 1-2
Havant and Waterlooville H 1-1 Maidstone United H 1-3
St Albans City H 1-1 Slough Town H 1-0
Wealdstone A 0-4 Hemel Hempstead Town A 1-4

Last Six Meetings

22.12.2018 Dartford 2 Hungerford Town 1
25.08.2018 Hungerford Town 1 Dartford 0
09.12.2017 Hungerford Town 1 Dartford 0
05.08.2017 Dartford 0 Hungerford Town 0
14.04.2017 Hungerford Town 2 Dartford 0
27.08.2016 Dartford 2 Hungerford Town 0

Stats

Dartford have yet to claim victory at Bulpit Lane, losing in all three trips there without scoring.

The Darts won in the last meeting to end Hungerford Town’s four game unbeaten run in this fixture. It was also the first time that the away team scored in this fixture.

The Darts last lost their opening three away league games in 2010. The last time they lost their first four was in 1990, when they were racked up nine consecutive away loses in the Southern Premier League.

On This Day

Dartford have won their last three games on 26 August without conceding a goal. The last outing two years ago against Hemel Hempstead Town ended in a 3-0 victory at Hemel Hempstead Town. It took until the second half to register a goal when Elliot Bradbrook netted a penalty, Alfie Pavey doubled the advantage before Bradbrook completed a brace. An away National League fixture at Tamworth finished with the Darts winning 2-0 in 2013, Danny Harris opened the scoring on three minutes and Kenny Clark recorded his only goal in a Dartford shirt. Jay May helped the Darts triumph at home against Kingstonian in the Isthmian Division One South back in 2006, the striker scored the only goal of the game.