Archives for : March2013

Dartford v Woking

Dartford continue their quest to earn the title of best part time team against Woking on Easter Monday.

The Cards have had the upper hand over the Darts in recent years winning the Conference South title as well as this seasons earlier encounter. Dartford and Woking are amongst the top part time teams in the country. With the playoffs and relegation looking unlikely both sides will want something to play for until the end of April.

At Kingsfield Stadium in August, the Darts had a frustrating evening in Surrey losing their second match of the season. Lee Noble received two yellow cards before the first half finished, leaving the visitors playing out the rest of the game with ten men. A draw would have been satisfactory but when Adam Green upended former Welling United winger Loick Pires a penalty was controversially awarded. Substitute Giuseppe Sole struck the ball beyond Louis Wells to give Woking a 1-0 victory eight minutes from time.

James Rogers scores a diving header to keep Dartford's chances of a come back alive

James Rogers scores a diving header against Woking

Last season at Princes Park, the visitors got off to a perfect start taking the lead on four minutes when Alan Inns headed the opener. Just before the break Woking went two in front after Adam Doyle netted.

Dartford rallied in the second half and when James Rogers scored a diving header just after the hour the Darts had a lifeline. The Cards pulled away once more with four minutes to go courtesy of Elvis Hammond. In the final minute Jacob Erskine clawed a goal back again for the hosts but it wasn’t enough. The 3-2 scoreline was the exact reverse to the season before when it was the Darts who ran out winners.

Tony Burman guided the Darts to a decent away result on Easter weekend against fourth place Newport County. The trip to Wales ended 0-0 keeping Dartford in twelfth position. The Kent side have now recorded four blanks in front of goal in their last five matches and picked up three away points from the last 33 available. At home, the Darts have been a difference proposition tasting defeat just once in their last eight home matches in the Conference Premier.

Meanwhile, Garry Hill’s side also picked up a point at Kingsfield Stadium maintaining the three point cushion over Dartford. Joe McNerney put through his own net a minute before half time but the goal was cancelled out by Kevin Betsy’s twelfth of the season. Woking’s draw means the club have drawn five of their last six fixtures.

Steve Thompson, coach spoke to BBC Surrey Sport after the 1-1 draw and said: “We looked a little tired today, but we fully deserved the point and I thought we were the team pushing for the win”, he added: “It’s been a very tough week and obviously we would have liked to get more than three points from three games”.

Woking took a while to settle back into Conference Premier football after three years away. Winning just two of their first seven the Cards thrashed Nuneaton Town 6-1 in September giving the side confidence. After some inconsistency and a  7-0 defeat at Hyde,  Garry Hill’s side was propelled into action as they went on to win six of their next seven matches. Mid-table form has returned to the Surrey club who can be pleased with their first season back at the top of non league football.

Team News

Mark Arber returns from suspension for his red card at Hereford United last week. Csaba Somogyi celebrated his Dartford début with a clean sheet at Newport County on Saturday. The Hungarian goalkeeper on loan from Fulham started ahead of the injured Louis Wells. Danny Harris missed the match on the weekend with a hamstring problem he picked up against Gateshead

Lee Noble will make his 150th start in a Dartford shirt if selected, the midfielder has also made 65 substitute appearances scoring 28 times for the Darts. If in the starting eleven Tom Champion will make his 150th appearance, four of which have been off the subs bench, the midfielder is also one booking from suspension and suffered a broken nose on Saturday.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 2 / Woking wins: 3 / Draws: 1 / Dartford goals: 10 / Woking goals: 12

Current League Form

Dartford (DLWLLW) Woking (DDDDWD)
Newport County A 0-0 Hereford United H 1-1
Hereford United A 0-1 Nuneaton Town A 0-0
Gateshead H 3-0 Kidderminster Harriers A 2-2
Barrow H 0-1 Braintree Town A 1-1
Hyde A 0-3 AFC Telford United H 5-2
Wrexham H 2-1 Macclesfield Town A 0-0

Last Meeting

14 August 2012 – Woking 1 Dartford 0 – Att: 1846

Scorer: Sole 82 (pen)

The Cards Lineup: Howe, Newton, Cestor, Johnson, McNerney, Ricketts, Sawyer, Betsy, Pires, Bubb, Williams (subs used: Sinclair, McCullum, Sole)

The Darts Lineup: Wells, Burns, Bonner, Arber, Green, Harris, Champion, Bradbrook, Rogers, Erskine, Noble (subs used: Collier, Rose, Crawford)

Match Stats

Dartford v Woking

Previous Meetings (* = F.A Cup)

18.02.2012 Woking 1 Dartford 0
13.12.2011 Dartford 2 Woking 3
09.04.2011 Dartford 3 Woking 2
27.11.2010 Woking 2 Dartford 2
21.10.1972* Dartford 3 Dartford 2


Dartford (26) and Woking (25) have used the fewest players in the Conference Premier this season

Prior the last two meetings which ended 1-0, the previous four games averaged 4.75 goals a game between the two sides.

Woking have scored the most goals in the opening fifteen matches out of any other Conference Premier club. The chart below shows when both sides are most potent in front of goal.

dfc v woking

Newport County v Dartford

The Darts attempt to break their away day hoodoo when they visit Newport County’s Rodney Parade for the first time on Saturday.

Dartford’s trip to Wales will be a tough task against a side pushing an automatic promotion place back to the Football League. The Exiles face a challenge of their own by playing their fourth game in eight days when they host Tony Burman’s side.

Way back in September a dramatic finish by the Darts upset the odds against an in form Newport County side. The Exiles had won their opening five matches of the season before tasting defeat against their Welsh rivals Wrexham. Dartford had lost their first three games but won the next trio of fixtures.

Richard Rose settles Tuesday's match

Rose settled the last meeting

Harry Crawford, now at Barnet, got the second half off to a flyer when after four minutes he followed up Jacob Erskine’s’ header which hit the crossbar. Five minutes later the Exiles top scorer latched onto a through ball to take it round the advancing Marcus Bettinelli and equalise. With the scores level and the game into injury time Richard Rose used his strength to shrug of his marker and rifle in a top corner winner.

Sill in search for a first away win in the Conference Premier this year, the Darts have gone ten matches without a win picking up a disappointing two points. Burman has been searching the loan market to find an answer and when Harry Crawford was recalled by Barnet he acquired strikers Charlie Sheringham and Jason Prior. Sheringham opened his account on Saturday in a 3-0 win against Gateshead but neither players could score in the 1-0 defeat at Hereford United on Tuesday night.

Burman confirmed his reasons for the double signing and told “After Saturday’s game, we’ve got eight games in 20 days and it’s going to be tough. That’s why I’ve brought people in”, he added: “I want to help them and they’ve helped me, Charlie especially has helped this club. If there was an opportunity to help him, I felt we should give it to him”.

Csaba Somogyi warms up for Fulham

Somogyi warms up for Fulham

Reliable goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli suddenly returned to parent club Fulham with Louis Wells back between the sticks on Tuesday. Burman delved into the loan market once more bringing in Csaba Somogyi from the Cottagers. The 27 year old Hungarian looks likely to start due to Wells’ latest injury.

Newport County’s gruelling fixture congestion may jeopardise their title push but with three games in hand, over top side Kidderminster Harriers, they are just eight points adrift. Justin Edinburgh’s side have not dropped below the playoffs all season and will only face one side in the top five during their end of season run in, on the final day of the season against Grimsby Town.

At Rodney Parade form has slipped for the Welsh club starting with a 5-0 defeat on New Years Day against Forest Green Rovers. In their last six home matches Newport County have only beaten basement boys AFC Telford United, who have recently set a Conference record of 27 matches without a win.

The Exiles success has been built around a potent strike force as the club have netted 74 goals in this campaign, one less than top scorers Mansfield Town. Aaron O’Connor is one behind the Conference Premier’s top scorer Bradley Bubb, notching up 18 goals in 31 league appearances. O’Connor missed a month of action in February and his return to full fitness will aid Newport County’s title bid. Alongside O’Connor up front is Christian Jolley who has a better strike rate of nine goals in 16 league matches.

This week Edinburgh ended a three game winless run by leading his side to a 2-0 win at Southport, O’Connor and Jolley scoring for the visitors. Ironically, the Exiles played on Thursday night against hosts Gateshead at Boston United’s York Street stadium. Neither side could break the deadlock in a 0-0 draw.

Recently the Newport County Director of Football, Tim Harris has expressed concerns over the fixture pile up, he told BBC Sport: “Our preferred option is for the league to move the deadline back a week and give everyone a bit of breathing space”. Manager, Edinburgh has been critical over the subject and commented to “The bottom line is the League let us down”.

In the last three matches against Welsh sides the Darts have left it late. Rose’s last minute winner against Saturday’s opponents in September was followed by Lee Noble’s ninetieth minute equaliser at Wrexham. This month Wrexham were victims again when Elliot Bradbrook nodded in a winner with seconds to go at Princes Park.

Team News

Mark Arber will serve his one match suspension on the weekend after his red card at Hereford United in the week. Jon Wallis and Ryan Hayes have been suffering from a virus in recent weeks. Tom Champion remains one caution away from suspension and if he avoids another caution, up to 14 April, he will not be suspended for his tenth yellow card. Louis Wells returned to first team action after his loan spell at Hayes and Yeading but cover Csaba Somogyi could deputise.

Alex Gileby has joined Newport County on loan from Colchester United and has yet to make an appearance for the Exiles. Michael Boateng joined just over a week ago made his début in Tuesday nights 2-0 win at Southport, the defender came in from Conference South’s Sutton United. Max Porter suffered a set back a fortnight ago has he hopes to recover from his injury, the play making midfielder has played twenty six times this season. Ismail Yakubu failed to shake off an injury and missed the draw versus Gateshead.

Head to Head

Newport County wins: 2 / Dartford wins: 1 / Newport County Goals: 7 / Dartford Goals: 6

Current League Form

Newport County (DWLLDW) Dartford (LWLLWD)
Gateshead A 0-0 Hereford United A 0-1
Southport A 2-0 Gateshead H 3-0
Stockport County A 0-1 Barrow A 0-1
Kidderminster Harriers H 1-2 Hyde A 0-3
Ebbsfleet United A 1-1 Wrexham H 2-1
Hereford United A 3-2 Stockport County H 1-1

Last Meeting

4 September 2012 – Dartford 2 Newport County 1 – Att: 1446

Goalscorers: Crawford (49), O’Connor (54), Rose (90)

The Darts Lineup: Bettinelli, Burns, Bonner, Arber, Rose, Hayes, Champion, Bradbrook, Rogers, Erskine, Crawford (subs used: Harris, Noble, Wallis)

The Exiles Lineup: Pidgeley, James, Yakubu, Pipe, Porter, Sandell, Thomson, Flynn, O’Connor, Crow, Louis (subs used: Swallow, Harris)

Match Stats

dfc v ncfc stats

Previous Meetings

18.04.1998 Dartford 4 Newport County 2
31.01.1998 Newport County 3 Dartford 1

Season Stats (collated using BBC Sport match statistics)

0 – Newport County are the only side to have had a player sent off in the Conference Premier league this season.

57 – The percentage of shots on target for Dartford. However the Darts have had the fewest attempts at goal (288) than any other club. Newport County have had 396 attempts with 54% hitting the target.

Both sides have suffered from the penalty spot this season conceding more from twelve yards than scoring. Here is an alternative league table based on goal difference from penalties only (excludes missed penalties).

pen stats

Hereford United v Dartford


It will be a case of third time lucky if the rescheduled fixture at Hereford United goes ahead on Tuesday night.

Due to meet in January, the match at Edgar Street was called off due to snowy conditions. Two months on and the relentless Winter conditions has invaded Spring yet there is hope this weeks match will go ahead.

When the two clubs met in mid September it was the start of Dartford’s best run since returning to the Conference Premier. At Princes Park, the Darts recorded one of their most convincing victories of the season running out 4-0 winners.

Ryan Hayes opened the scoring early on with a tidy finish and James Rogers headed in just after the break. Substitutes Danny Harris and Jon Wallis emphatically increased the scoreline with Harris’s goal the pick of the match. The Darts remained unbeaten for a further four matches up until 6 October when they recorded their last back to back league win.

Hayes also made the headlines on the weekend after his substitute appearance turned the home match against Gateshead. In an relatively even and uneventful first half the two sides went in goalless at the break stretching Dartford’s run to 225 minutes without a goal.

The Darts only had to wait a further 21 minutes when a blocked effort was followed up by Hayes who struck home the opener. Hayes had only been on the pitch for three minutes and he made a significant impact. Six minutes later, the winger found space on the right and cut inside onto his left foot, with only one thing in his mind Hayes curled in a superb trademark finish. Tony Burman told BBC Radio Kent after the game: “The game opened up a little bit in the second half and when you’ve got someone of Ryan Hayes’s quality you put him on to exploit that and he did”.

Saturday afternoon got even better for the Darts when the return of Charlie Sheringham finished off the visitors in style. Hayes broke away and picked out the striker with a delightful cross. Sheringham’s first touch set himself up for another curling effort which went beyond Adam Bartlett. The 25 year old marked his first start of his loan spell with a decent performance and a goal to show.

Burman is delighted with reaching the target of fifty points, he commented: “I’m very pleased, it’s taken a bit of time, but we’ve got over that points tally, and hearing some of the other results below us, we needed it”. Dartford remain in twelfth place and take on a Hereford United side a point better off.

The Bulls slipped up after taking the lead on the weekend through Josh O’Keefe’s deflected 25 yard strike. Hyde hit back just passed the hour when Louis Almond’s cross was met by Alex Brown’s head, who equalised for the visitors. A second goal arrived ten minutes later as the provider for the leveller netted in the winner from close range.

Tenth place Hereford United have tasted defeat in their last two Conference Premier fixtures and have fluctuated around mid-table for the majority of the season. Martin Foyle can count on his summer signing Ryan Bowman for goals as the 21 year old has scored 14 in the league this campaign, nine on the road. Midfielder, O’Keefe has chipped in with eight so far with half of those coming from the penalty spot.

The Bulls finished 91st in the football league last year and six years on from their last spell in non league has proven to be tough off the field. Only a month ago chairman David Keyte confirmed the importance of player sales and cup runs for the club. The chairman also announced, before the clubs Annual General Meeting they were losing £30,000 a month, and in November the Bulls reached a tax bill agreement which threatened administration.

Team News

Louis Wells has returned from his loan spell and will start between the sticks. Wells has played just four times for the Darts this season, twice in the league and twice in the F.A Cup. Marcus Bettinelli has been recalled by Fulham after his impressive performances in a Dartford shirt. Bettinelli has made 42 appearances whilst on loan keeping 11 clean sheets.

Ryan Hayes suffered a virus last week but managed an excellent half hour from off the substitutes bench on Saturday. Lee Noble made his first start since his dismissal at Grimsby Town. Danny Harris was replaced on the weekend after 54 minutes with a tight hamstring leading to Jason Prior and Charlie Sheringham pairing up for the first time. Tom Champion remains one caution away from a suspension.

Hereford United’s James McQuilken was released from Edgar Street on Friday, the midfielder made eight appearances for the Bulls starting half those matches. Martin Foyle has re-signed Craig Jones from Westfields until the end of the season.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 11 / Hereford United wins: 20 / Draws: 10 / Dartford Goals: 59/ Hereford United Goals: 69

Current League Form

Hereford United (LLWDLD) Dartford (WLLWDD)
Hyde H 1-2 Gateshead H 3-0
Gateshead A 2-3 Barrow H 0-1
Barrow H 2-1 Hyde A 0-3
Luton Town A 1-1 Wrexham H 2-1
Newport County H 2-3 Stockport County H 1-1
Nuneaton Town H 0-0 Southport A 2-2

Last Meeting

15 September 2012 – Dartford 4 Hereford United 0 – Att: 1601

Goalscorers: Hayes (6), Rogers (47), Harris (76), Wallis (89)

The Darts Lineup: Bettinelli, Burns, Bonner, Arber, Rose, Hayes, Champion, Bradbrook, Rogers, Erskine, Crawford (subs used: Noble, Wallis, Harris)

The Bulls Lineup: Hanford, Gallinagh, Anthony, Graham, Heath, Watkins, Carruthers, Pell, Clist, Clucas, Bowman (subs used: Sammons, Nichols, Evans)

Match Stats

Previous Meetings (FAT = F.A Trophy)

15.09.2012 Dartford 4 Hereford United 0
14.03.1972 Dartford 0 Hereford United 1
26.02.1972 (FAT) Hereford United 0 Dartford 1
09.10.1971 Hereford United 3 Dartford 0
14.04.1971 Dartford 1 Hereford United 1
05.09.1970 Hereford United 4 Dartford 3

Dartford v Gateshead


Dartford hope to record their first ever victory over Gateshead this weekend at Princes Park.

Over the last four matches between the two sides Dartford have mustered up just one goal. More recently the Heed beat the Darts back in September in a dominant display. The long journey to the Gateshead International Stadium six months ago ended up 2-0 to the hosts. Goals from 34 year old midfielder Micky Cummins and 22 year old midfielder Josh Gillies deservedly ensured the Tynesiders picked up three points.

Two seasons ago Gateshead knocked out the Darts in a F.A Trophy third round tie. Then representing the Conference South, Tony Burman’s side were unable to cause an upset bowing out of the competition in a 3-0 loss. Phil Turnbull’s deflected shot gave Gateshead the lead just before the break. The now departed duo of Brain Wake and Kris Gale secured the win for the Heed.

Under the Tuesday night Princes Park floodlights Dartford looked to bounce back from their disappointing defeat at Hyde. This time Barrow were the visitors who are in a Conference Premier relegation scrap. The Darts were put under pressure in the opening ten minutes relying on two quality saves from Marcus Bettinelli and a goal line clearance. The Darts grew in confidence and just passed the half hour mark Elliot Bradbrook’s header was blocked on the line. Bradbrook caused problems earlier in the half being upended when almost clear on goal, Barrow’s debutant Steve Williams was cautioned.

New loan signing Jason Prior lasted just after the hour before being replaced by Jacob Erskine and Ryan Hayes came off for Lee Noble. Moments later Burns came to Dartford’s rescue again clearing Danny Rowe’s effort off the line. On 73 minutes Alex-Ray Harvey was brought down in the box by Richard Rose and up stepped Richie Baker to put the Bluebirds in front and earn the visitors three points. The second loss without scoring this week ended Dartford’s ten match unbeaten home run and left Dartford remaining in twelfth place on 49 points.

On Tuesday night, Gateshead hosted Hereford United and fell behind when Chris Sharp opened the scoring after seventeen minutes. The lead didn’t last long as the Heed equalised two minutes later through Ryan Donaldson. Just before the break the hosts turned the match around when James Brown made it 2-1 at half time.

It took just five minutes for the next twist in the match as Hereford United’s Marlon Jackson grabbed a second for the Bulls. Parity was short lived when Brown found the back of the net for a second time putting Gateshead in front.

The fixture congestion of four games in eight days is the result of earlier postponements. On Saturday, Gateshead travelled to the Impact Arena and let a two goal slip against Alfreton Town. Having led 2-0 at half time courtesy of an Anton Brown own goal and Josh Gillies’s spot kick the visitors looked in control. The Reds fought back in the final 13 minutes scoring from Ben Tomlinson’s header and a minute later Steven Hewitt put Alfreton Town level. Substitute Liam Hatch was dismissed reducing Gateshead to ten men and Scott Boden’s stoppage time winner completed the Reds comeback.

Although the visitors are just four points from safety at the time of writing, games in hand and a level goal difference puts the Tynesiders in a ‘false’ position. The Heed can easily climb up the Conference Premier ladder to safety but still need to look over their shoulders.

Gateshead have fallen victim to the wet winter failing to complete a home league match over a staggering 55 day period between November and December. The poor condition of their pitch is so severe they have resorted to playing at Hartlepool United’s Victoria Ground and York City’s Bootham Crescent. Last week the club announced their final game of the season will be at Middlesbrough’s Riverside Stadium. It’s of little surprise that the club are in the process of planning a move away from the Gateshead International Stadium. At the time of writing Gateshead play again on Thursday night against Newport County.

Under Ian Bogie the Tynesiders had looked comfortable in eight place up to December. After a four match winless run Graham Wood relieved the former midfielder of his duties. Anth Smith came in as Caretaker Manager and after a difficult start to 2013 seems to have found his feet. The start of this year began with five successive defeats, a downturn in form saw the club drop from into the relegation zone. Smith now permanent manager until the end of the season has steadied the ship with just one defeat in five before Thursday’s fixture.

Team News

Jason Prior made his first team début on loan from AFC Wimbledon. Dartford’s new striker came in for Jacob Erskine to make his first start for the Darts.

Carl Magnay is out with ankle ligament damage for an expected two more weeks. The defender only recently returned to first-team action following injury and has made 28 league appearances. Liam Hatch will be suspended for his red card last weekend, the striker has served two matches already of his three game ban. Highly rated England Youth international Jake Fowler is on loan from Middlesbrough.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 0 / Gateshead wins: 3 / Draws: 1 / Dartford goals: 1 / Gateshead goals: 7

Current League Form

Dartford (LLWDDW) Gateshead (WLDWWL)
Barrow H 0-1 Hereford United H 3-2
Hyde A 0-3 Alfreton Town A 2-3
Wrexham H 2-1 AFC Telford United A 0-0
Stockport County H 1-1 Hyde H 3-0
Southport A 2-2 Kidderminster Harriers H 2-0
Luton Town H 1-0 Braintree Town H 1-2

Last Meeting

8 September 2012 – Gateshead 2 Dartford 0 – Att: 758

The Heed Lineup: Bartlett, Magnay, Boyle, Clark, Bush, Chandler, Gillies, Turnbull, Cummins, Donaldson, Odubade (subs used: Fisher, Marwood, McGorrigan)

The Darts Lineup: Bettinelli, Burns, Bonner, Arber, Rose, Hayes, Champion, Bradbrook, Rogers, Erskine, Crawford (subs used: Collier, Noble, Wallis)

Match Stats


Previous Meetings (* = F.A Trophy)

05.02.2011* Gateshead 3 Dartford 0
04.05.1985 Dartford 1 Gateshead 2
09.03.1985 Gateshead 0 Dartford 0

Dartford v Barrow


Dartford will be pleased to return to Princes Park for their midweek fixture against relegation threatened Barrow.

On a ten match unbeaten run at home in all competitions the Darts have found opponents in the bottom half of the table difficult. When the two sides last met at Holker Street in October, Dartford recorded there only 0-0 draw in this season’s Conference Premier campaign. The long journey to Cumbria ended in Tony Burman’s side grinding out a point to bring home from the north west.

Another trip north west on Saturday was not quite as successful when the Darts failed to score on the road for the seventh time in the league. Their struggling opponents Hyde managed to breach the Dartford defence on three occasions to move five points clear of Barrow.

Up until half time the Darts were still in with a shout despite falling behind to a Scott Hogan goal. The home side took the initiative against their lacklustre visitors when Matthew Blinkhorn and Louis Almond sealed a much needed victory for the Tigers. With Woking adding to AFC Telford United’s 24 game winless streak and Cambridge United beating Grimsby Town, the Darts dropped to twelfth.

Barrow threw away a goal advantage on the weekend and suffered a last minute blow leaving Dave Bayliss’ side in trouble. Bluebirds top scorer Adam Boyes netted his twelfth of the season from six yards at Edgar Street to give the visitors the lead. Fourteen minutes later Barrow’s Sean McConville stopped a goalscoring opportunity and was sent off, Joshua O’Keefe put Hereford United level from the spot. Brian Smikle’s injury time winner for the Bulls left the Bluebirds third from bottom and three points from safety.

Defeat on the road leaves Barrow looking for their first away win in the Conference Premier in six attempts, the Cumbrian’s have picked up two points out of the last fifteen available. Defensively only Ebbsfleet United have conceded more and on three occasions Barrow have shipped in five goals or more on their travels  (1-6 v Luton Town, 1-8 v Mansfield Town and 2-5 v Southport). Despite their leaky defence the Bluebirds do have a better away record than home this season winning five, drawing five and losing nine.

A week ago after a ‘flat performance’ against Stockport County, manager Bayliss put his teams struggles down to inconsistency, speaking to, he said: “We were fantastic against Forest Green yet with virtually the same players we go from that to perform like this. That’s why the players are at Barrow because they are so inconsistent”.

One consistency in the Barrow side is defender Michael Pearson who has started every league game this season. Partnering the number five is the experienced on loan Bury centre half Efetobore Sodje who has won a dozen Nigerian caps in his career. Richie Baker has chipped in with eight league goals from midfield in a side that has racked up the fewest in the division.

Team News

Lee Noble returned on Saturday coming off the bench at Hyde, the midfielder has completed his four match ban. Tom Champion still remains a booking away from suspension after picking up nine cautions this season.

Sean McConville’s handball on the weekend means he will be suspended. The 24 year old midfielder has made 21 league appearances this season, nine from the bench. Danny Rowe missed the weekend’s last minute defeat with a hamstring injury.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 3 / Barrow wins: 2 / Draws: 2 / Dartford goals: 7 / Barrow goals: 7

Current League Form

Dartford (LWDDWL) Barrow (LLDWLD)
Hyde A 0-3 Hereford United A 1-2
Wrexham H 2-1 Stockport County H 0-2
Stockport County H 1-1 Forest Green Rovers A 1-1
Southport A 2-2 Tamworth H 2-0
Luton Town H 1-0 Wrexham H 0-1
Lincoln City A 1-2 Lincoln City A 0-0

Last Meeting

13 October 2012 – Barrow 0 Dartford 0 – Att: 1278

The Bluebirds Lineup: Hurst, Flynn, Hessey, Pearson, Anderson, Baker, Harvey, Hunter, Rutherford, Boyes, Almond (subs used: Rowe, Jackson)

The Darts Lineup: Bettinelli, Burns, Bonner, Arber, Rose, Wallis, Rogers, Noble, Harris, Erskine, Collier (subs used: Hayes, Birchall, Crawford)

Match Stats

Previous Meetings

16.03.1986 Dartford 3 Barrow 2
23.11.1985 Barrow 1 Dartford 2
16.03.1985 Dartford 2 Barrow 0
08.09.1984 Barrow 0 Dartford 0
17.04.1982 Barrow 2 Dartford 0
29.08.1981 Dartford 0 Barrow 2


70 – The amount Barrow have conceded this season, only two more than the worst defence in the league. Away from home 42 goals have been shipped in, the same as Ebbsfleet United who have conceded the most.

12 – Barrow have failed to score on a dozen occasions in this season’s Conference Premier campaign

268 – The number of attempted shots at goal from Dartford this season, the lowest in the division. 56% of their shots have been on target the second highest ratio in the league.

Hyde v Dartford


Dartford will be tested against relegation battlers and Conference North champions Hyde at Ewen Fields on Saturday.

After Tuesday nights postponement the Darts return to action following their scalp of Wrexham. Dartford last faced Hyde back in September when they dramatically turned around a goal deficit at Princes Park.

In a lacklustre first half Hyde edged ahead when Alex Brown scored in the 28th minute. In the second half Lee Noble and Harry Crawford were introduced and it looked as if though Dartford found a way back into the game. Jacob Erskine was upended in the box before Crawford’s penalty was saved by David Carnell.

James Rogers tussles for possession against Hyde

With Hyde reduced to ten men after Adam Griffin received a second yellow card, Crawford made amends with five minutes to go when his superb looping header levelled the score. The Darts sensed three points and pushed for the win and were rewarded when full back Richard Rose kept his cool to lob a crowd of players for a last minute winner.

In Dartford’s last match they came from behind for the third time this season to win a league match. The Darts more than matched Wrexham but found themselves a goal down at the break. The Welsh side took the lead after 26 minutes through top scorer Danny Wright who finished off the impressive Kevin Thornton’s through ball.

Often this season Dartford have grown into matches, specifically the second half. This time a well deserved equaliser arrived with fifteen minutes to go. On loan Gillingham youngster Jack Evans came off the bench and his low shot set up and dramatic finish. Recently the Darts have fallen victim to last minute goals and this time it was their turn when midfielder Elliot Bradbrook headed his eighth league goal of the season with a last gasp winner.

The Darts are now unbeaten in four Conference Premier games but have to go back as far as November for their last away triumph in the league. A draw at Southport a fortnight ago has steered the club in the right direction as they search for their first league win on the road in eight.

Saturday’s hosts unexpectedly climbed to ninth by the end of 2012 thanks to an excellent two and a half months from October to the end of the year. Scott McNiven guided Hyde to eight wins in 11 fixtures including a 7-0 smashing of Woking.

Since the New Year the Tigers have rapidly slid down the ladder failing to score in eight of their last 11 league matches. Four defeats in a row, then a brief respite of a draw and a win was followed up by a further six losses. A trip to Kenilworth Road didn’t bode well on Tuesday night as the club started in the bottom four. By the end of the night they had climbed above the danger zone with a 2-1 triumph.

At home, Hyde have scored just once in their last 540 minutes of football picking up a solitary point. Looking for more fire power McNiven signed striker Scott Hogan from Ashton United and to strengthen the midfield Jamie Milligan on loan from League Two side Fleetwood Town. Milligan rejoined the Tigers a decade on from playing for the club.

Bolton Wanderers defender Ben Dennis also returned for another loan spell after he made 12 appearances in his first spell  earlier in the season. Dennis is likely to feature with the usual defensive trio of Josh Brizell, Adam Griffin and Luke Ashworth. Up front Hyde’s top scorers Scott Spencer (11 goals) has England C credentials and former Evertonian Phil Jevons (15 goals) have not featured as frequently recently.

Team News

Harry Crawford has been recalled by League Two side Barnet. The striker managed to add an extra goal to his Dartford tally during his loan spell. Tom Champion is one caution away from suspension having picked up nine yellow cards so far this season.

Head to Head

Hyde wins: 0 / Dartford wins 1 / Draws: 0

Current League Form

Hyde (WLLLLL) Dartford (WDDWLL)
Luton Town A 2-1 Wrexham H 2-1
Gateshead A 0-3 Stockport County H 1-1
Newport County H 0-1 Southport A 2-2
Alfreton Town H 1-5 Luton Town H 1-0
Tamworth A 0-2 Lincoln City H 1-2
Mansfield Town A 0-1 Mansfield Town A 0-5

Last Meeting

30 September 2012 – Dartford 2 Hyde 1 – Att: 1338

Goalscorers: Brown (28), Crawford (85), Rose (90)

The Darts Lineup: Bettinelli, Burns, Bonner, Arber, Rose, Champion, Wallis, Hayes, Rogers, Erskine, Birchall (subs used: Noble, Harris, Crawford)

The Tigers Lineup: Carnell, Brizell, Griffin, Dennis, Lomax, Brown, Poole, Byrne, Tomsett, S. Spencer, Jevons (subs used: Cox, Crowther, Williams)

Match Stats


Dartford may have the best home record against sides in the top half (W7 D0 L1) but they have the worst record against teams in the bottom half away from Princes Park (W1 D3 L5).

Along with Hyde and Wrexham, the Darts only other league win this season after conceding the first goal was against Ebbsfleet United.

Hyde’s 7-0 win over Woking is the joint largest winning margin in this season’s Conference Premier campaign, Mansfield Town beat Barrow 8-1.

The Tigers’ six successive defeats is the longest losing streak in the league this season

Dartford v Wrexham – rescheduled to Sat 09/03/13 – 1pm


Dartford were prevented from playing in front of the cameras on Friday night against table toppers and F.A Trophy finalists Wrexham.

A waterlogged Princes Park pitch has led to the rescheduling of the Conference Premier fixture. Called off after an inspection, officials and the authorities have agreed to try again on Saturday at 1pm.

Back in September Dartford achieved one of their results of the season in Wales when the left it late to bring home a point. A trip to the Racecourse Ground five and half months ago ended in a well earned 2-2 draw.

Winger Danny Harris gave the Darts a shock lead inside the first five minutes when he slotted past goalkeeper Joslain Mayebi. Wrexham took control and by the break turned the match around. First, top scorer Danny Wright levelled following up from a blocked effort. Just before the interval on loan Bury striker Andy Bishop dinked a chip over the on rushing Marcus Bettinelli. In the second half committed Dartford players dug in and were rewarded in style. Lee Noble struck home a delightful 25 yard free kick in the final minute to grab a deserved point.

The Darts have fond memories of their last showing on the box beating Mansfield Town 2-0. This time they build up to Friday’s fixture on the back of a draw against Stockport County. A low turn out witnessed the visitors take the lead against the run of play when a dipping shot was parried into the path of Mark Cullen for the on loan striker to score with eleven minutes played. The Hatters settled into the match and went into the dressing room at half time a goal to the good.

After an hour Tony Burman changed to a more attacking formation throwing on Jacob Erskine and Jack Evans. The game came to life and Princes Park had something to cheer with twenty minutes remaining thanks to Danny Harris bundling the ball over the line for the equaliser. The result means Dartford are now five league games unbeaten at home.

Wrexham spent Tuesday night ten miles from Princes Park when they visited our local rivals Ebbsfleet United. Manager Andy Morrell had captured the loan signing of Dele Adebola from Rochdale signalling his intent to clinch promotion. On Tuesday night the former established Championship striker scored three minutes into his second Wrexham appearance. A second goal by former Premier League striker Brett Ormerod arrived just eight minutes later doubling the advantage for the visitors.

Morrell’s men were three up just before the half hour mark when Kevin Thornton scored his third league goal for the club. On the stroke of half time Robert Ogleby scored a fourth in an excellent first half for Wrexham. Nathan Elder grabbed a consolation late in the second half but the Red Devils stretched their lead at the top to three.

The Reds are on a thirteen match unbeaten run in which time they have only scored more than two in a match on three occasions. The ability to grind out results prior Tuesday’s mauling of Fleet has left the Welsh club with the chance to push for the non league double, winning the league and F.A Trophy which was last achieved in 1993 by Martin O’Neill’s Wycombe Wanderers.

Team News

Lee Noble serves his final game suspension following his second red card of the season almost three weeks ago. Mark Arber returned to the bench on Tuesday as an unused substitute after recovering from a virus. Tom Champion is one caution away from a suspension after picking up nine yellow cards so far this season.

Joslain Mayebi is out for the long term with an achilles injury he picked up against Southport. The first choice goalkeeper was due to join up with Cameroon for their friendly with Tanzania.

Head to Head

Dartford Wins 0 / Wrexham Wins: 0 / Draws: 1

Current League Form

Dartford (DDWLLW) Wrexham (WDWWWW)
Stockport County H 1-1 Ebbsfleet United A 4-1
Southport A 2-2 Alfreton Town H 1-1
Luton Town H 1-0 Barrow A 1-0
Lincoln City A 1-2 Gateshead A 1-0
Mansfield Town A 0-5 Hereford United A 1-0
Macclesfield Town H 2-0 Stockport County H 3-1

Last Meeting

2 September 2012 – Wrexham 2 Dartford 2 – Att: 3772

Goalscorers: D. Harris (4), D. Wright (16), Bishop (42), Noble (90)

Wrexham Lineup: Mayebi, Walker, S. Wright, Riley, Ashton, J. Harris, Keates, Hunt, Cieselwicz, D. Wright, Bishop (sub used: Little, Ormerod, Morrell)

Dartford Lineup: Bettinelli, Burns, Bonner, Arber, Rose, Hayes, Champion, Bradbrook, Wallis, Erskine, D. Harris (subs used: Collier, Noble, Crawford)

Match Stats


Dartford v Stockport County


Dartford play their second of three games in a week when they host Stockport County on Tuesday night.

The Darts hope to stretch their unbeaten run at Princes Park to six games in all competitions against a struggling former football league club. Stockport County are the only side Dartford have yet to play this season and their opponents are just three points from safety.

Over the last week two cup runs have ended for Tony Burman’s side when they drew 0-0 with Grimsby Town at home, losing 3-0 on aggregate. Towards the end of last week the Darts conceded their place in the Kent Senior Cup as they were unable to fulfil their second round match with Margate. A backlog of fixtures built up by a wet Winter and an excellent F.A Trophy run prevented Dartford reaching a third successive county cup final.

Burman spoke to BBC Radio 5 Live’s Non League Show and stated: “I’m bitterly disappointed with that decision. Myself I’ve always seen the Kent Senior Cup as a very respectable competition. It should have been sorted out in a different way but there you go. We haven’t pulled out we just couldn’t play four or five games in one week and expect to play the Kent Senior Cup game in that week as well”.

Despite the two cup exits Burman’s squad travelled up to Merseyside on the weekend to face Southport. Recently away from home has proven difficult for the club with one point from seven matches on the road prior the match.

Like the fixture earlier in November against the Sandgrounders, Dartford took the lead in the first half. Harry Crawford scored his first goal since returning to the club taking his tally to 12 for the season. Crawford’s stuck in the opener which his first goal outside of Kent in a Dartford shirt. Southport equalised five minutes before the break when Andy Owens found the net taking advantage of the under pressure Marcus Bettinelli, the officials awarded a goal as Bettinelli claimed he was fouled.

For the fourth time this season Dartford took the lead against their hosts, Tom Bonner notched his third league goal of the campaign when he scrambled the ball over the line. Then for the fourth time this season Southport equalised against the Darts courtesy of Shaun Whalley’s spot kick seven minutes from time.

Dartford defender Tom Bonner told BBC Radio Kent “It’s always good to get on the score sheet but it’s disappointing to go in front and lose the lead and to do it twice. We’re gutted today”, he added: “I thought we stood up to them really well. It was a lack of concentration for the penalty and we’re gutted we didn’t get three points today”.

Despite alterations in the back four Dartford have only conceded once at home in 2013. Lee Burns and Mark Arber have had time on the sidelines through injury whilst Adam Green has pushed in front of Richard Rose as first choice left back. What does bode well for the Darts is they have the sixth best home record whilst Stockport County have won just three away from Edgeley Park.

Tuesday’s visitors Stockport County took ten years to fall from the second tier of English football to the Conference Premier. Former Hatters defender Jim Gannon managed the Hatters up until the end of January when he was dismissed 14 months into his second tenure as boss.

Darije Kalezic has been in charge at Edgeley Park and on Saturday he lost to a former Dartford manager John Still. Still’s first game as Luton Town boss inflicted a 1-0 defeat on Stockport County. Stuart Fleetwood missed a penalty for the visitors but his side went into the break a goal up. Jake Howells’ low drive made sure the three points were taken back to Kenilworth Road leaving Stockport County in seventeenth place.

The Lancashire club are without a win in four in which they have scored just twice versus Hereford United a week ago. This season Stockport County have scored the fewest goals away from home but their defensive record rivals those in the playoff spots.

Born in Switzerland, Kalezic has already altered his squad hoping his team will avoid another relegation. The Bosnian has extended Mark Cullen’s loan spell to the end of the season from Hull City, signed midfielder Greg McDermott and Paul Marshall on a non contract basis. McDermott is son of Terry McDermott and joined from Newcastle United whilst Marshall came from FC Halifax Town and played against the Darts in the F.A Trophy Quarter Final. Johan Hammer has came in on a months loan from Everton and has featured in every game since joining. Former Carlisle United and Colchester United midfielder Simon Hackney has signed on a free transfer. The new players have been added to the likes of ever present defender James Tunnicliffe and top scorer Danny Hattersley.

Team News

Lee Noble continues his suspension serving his third of four games for his red card against Grimsby Town in the F.A Trophy first leg.  If selected central midfielder Jon Wallis will make his 50th start for the club in all competitions and Adam Green will make his 50th league start. Mark Arber has missed the last week of action with a virus. Tom Champion is one caution away from a suspension after picking up nine yellow cards so far this season.

Current League Form

Dartford (DWLLWL) Stockport County (LLLDWL)
Southport A 2-2 Luton Town H 0-1
Luton Town H 1-0 Hereford United H 2-3
Lincoln City A 1-2 Tamworth H 0-1
Mansfield Town A 0-5 Ebbsfleet United A 0-0
Macclesfield Town H 2-0 Lincoln City H 2-0
Alfreton Town A 2-3 Wrexham A 1-3


7 – Stockport County are at their least potent in front of goal in the final 15 minutes, only Gateshead have scored fewer times during this period this season

8 – Dartford have conceded the most goals from spot kicks this season

16 – The Darts have conceded the most goals in the last 15 minutes of matches, joint with Hyde

23 – The number of players Dartford have used in the Conference Premier, the fewest by any club. Stockport County have used 10 more players and are in fourth spot

Stockport County’s large following as seen a decline over the last decade, averaging attendances of 3353 this season compared to Dartford’s 1494 the Greater Manchester club will desperately hope to stop falling down the league pyramid.