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Welling United v Dartford

Tony Burman will come up against a former player in the dugout when the Darts take on local rivals on Boxing Day.

Dartford will make the short journey to Park View Road to play Welling United, managed by Jamie Coyle. The Wings boss made 140 appearances for the Darts and was part of the team that won the Isthmian Division One North and Isthmian Premier leagues, in 2008 and 2010. The ex-Dartford defender is making a good start to his managerial career with his side currently eleventh in the National South four points off a playoff spot.

The Darts took four points from Welling United last term with the away match ending in a 0-0 draw back in February. It was the fourth time in a row at Park View Road that the two sides shared the points in the league. In September 2014, the National League meeting ended 2-2 with the Darts equalising on both occasions. Harry Beautyman put the Wings ahead but Peter Sweeney levelled for Dartford. The game was just 14 minutes old when Jamal Fyfield scored again for Welling United, but for the second time Elliot Bradbrook squared up the score.

Eight months previous, early goals settled another draw this time Dartford loanee Jim Stevenson had the visitors in front. However, Ross Lafayette’s penalty eight minutes later secured a 1-1 draw. The Boxing Day fixture six years ago also ended up 1-1 on a dramatic afternoon. Lee Clarke opened the scoring for Welling United and after Joe Healy was sent off it looked like the Wings would hold on. In the last minute, Clarke had the chance to secure victory but missed his penalty, then Dartford went down the other end and Lee Noble headed in the equaliser.

After taking on Braintree Town on the weekend, in a match that saw the top two battle it out, Welling United will provide a different test for the Darts. Burman spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk and said: “Welling are going through a transitional period but with all due respect to them, it’s a period at the right end of the table”, the Dartford boss added: “They’ve got players who we know and vice-versa, it will about what happens on the day”, he continued: “The bragging rights are there, it’s not the be all and end all but it’s nice to pick up the points over the Christmas period”.

Braintree Town started Saturday’s game well looking to build from the back and put the Darts under pressure. However, against the run of play some great work from Tom Murphy on the left saw him cross the ball to Andy Pugh who tapped in the opener on 17 minutes. The Darts grew into the first half after the goal until their opponents tried to get back on level terms, which they managed from a counter attack finished off by Marcel Barrington on the stroke of half time. The second half played out with no further goals and left the Darts clinging on to top spot on goal difference, level with four other teams on 39 points.

Burman commented after the game courtesy of www.kentonline.co.uk: “Hopefully we can get the few wins together we need but nothing happens in December, nothing happens in January. You’ve got to keep up there among the pack”, he added: “If we make a gap, great, but it just doesn’t work like that sometimes”.

Alex Brown served his one match suspension against the Iron and will be available for selection. Nathan Collier made his first start since returning to the Darts taking Brown’s place in midfield. Former Welling United striker Alfie Pavey has been named on the bench since returning from a chest infection, Burman said when speaking to www.kentonline.co.uk: “It’s well-publicised that Alfie’s had some breathing problems over the last few weeks, which has hampered him when the weather’s got cold”.

One of the outstanding players so far this campaign, Lee Noble was also left on the bench with Burman confirming to www.kentonline.co.uk: “”When I got here, he was out doing the warm-up,” he said. “He’s come through the warm-up on his own and I decided to put him on the bench. When he did the warm-up with the players, he’s come back in and his calf stiffened up so we had a little problem there”.

Meanwhile, Welling United were at title challengers Chelmsford City on the weekend and a costly start made the afternoon difficult for the Wings. After just a couple of minutes the Clarets were in front when Matthew Johnson scored for the hosts. Former Dart, Luke Daley volleyed home a second after six minutes and Kudus Onyenuga made it 3-0 before the half was over. Chris Dicksom added a fourth in the second half and Welling United’s Bradley Goldberg scored a consolation.

The Wings have won once in their last five outings which has seen them drop slightly off the playoff pace. Over September and October they managed a run of six wins from seven games which put the amongst the crowded field. Joe Healy is their main marksman this term with nine National South goals, whilst former Darts, Coyle and Tom Bradbrook have four goals each. Brother of Dartford captain Elliot, Tom last played at the beginning of the month in Welling United’s 2-2 draw with Truro City, the striker who made 103 appearances for Dartford and scored 24 times, wasn’t in the squad for the Wings defeat at Chelmsford City.

Head to Head
Welling United wins: 7 / Dartford wins: 17 / Draws: 10

Current League Form

Dartford (DLWDWL) Welling United (LLDDWL)
Braintree Town H 1-1 Chelmsford City A 1-4
Hungerford Town A 0-1 East Thurrock United H 0-3
Poole Town A 1-0 Hemel Hempstead Town A 2-2
Wealdstone H 3-3 Concord Rangers H 3-3
Gloucester City H 4-1 St Albans City A 2-1
Truro City A 1-3 Wealdstone H 1-2

Previous Meetings

28.02.2017 Welling United 0 Dartford 0
22.11.2016 Welling United 2 Dartford 2
06.09.2016 Dartford 2 Welling United 1
19.10.2015 Dartford 3 Welling United 1
11.11.2014 Dartford 2 Welling United 1
30.09.2014 Welling United 2 Dartford 2

Stats
Dartford’s last league victory at Welling United was in 1983. The Darts won 4-0 and since then have lost one and drawn the last four.

Over 90 minutes, Dartford are unbeaten in seven against the Wings. The Darts have lost just once in their last 13 against Welling United. Including the penalty shoot out loss in last season’s Kent Senior Cup, then the Darts have lost twice in that time.

The Darts are clinging on to top spot and clinging on to the best attacking record. Dartford are still the top scorers with 44 goals, but Braintree Town and East Thurrock United are just one behind.

On This Day
This will be the sixteenth Boxing Day fixture for Dartford since reformation and their record stands at won six, drawn three, lost six. In the time, the Darts have beaten rivals Ebbsfleet United twice in 2012 and 2016. Harry Crawford’s brace and Elliot Bradbrook’s goal earned Dartford a 3-1 win in 2012. Four years later, Tom Bonner’s header against his former side and Duane Ofori-Acheampong’s strike gave the Darts a 2-1 victory. The biggest score was racked up in 2007 when Dartford beat Canvey Island 6-1 in an Isthmian Division One North fixture. On that day six different scorers helped the Darts to the three points, Steve Norman, Ryan Hayes, Brendon Cass, Jay May, Eddie McClements and Jamie Coyle.

Dartford v Braintree Town

The top two go head to head at Princes Park this weekend as the Darts host second place Braintree Town.

Joint leaders on points Dartford have a superior goal difference and only victory will guarantee another weekend at the top of the National South. Braintree Town are level on points but so too are Hampton and Richmond Borough, in fact the top seven are separated by just one win.

Dartford met the Iron earlier in the season back in August. After an uninspiring opening day, the Darts played their first away match of the campaign against the Essex club, who are now looking to bounce back to the National League after relegation last term.

The Darts had to show their fighting spirit over four months ago, to earn a draw from 2-0 down. Braintree Town went in at half-time in the driving seat with goals from Karl Oliyide and Billy Crook. In the second half, Lee Noble’s header back to Tom Murphy pulled a goal back, but the goalscorer was forced off through injury. The equaliser came from captain Elliot Bradbrook who headed home after Tom Bonner nodded the ball back across goal from a corner. On that evening, Warren Mfula made his first start and Richard Sho-Silva his debut.

It’s been over five years since Dartford beat Braintree Town when Tom Bonner and Jacob Erskine scored the only two goals of the game. Since then, the Darts failed to score in the last five meetings against the Iron before the 2-2 draw this season. Dartford’s last two campaigns in the National League saw Braintree Town complete the double against the Darts on both occasions.

Tony Burman will be hoping his side can show the mentality needed by his players to beat a title challenger. In the last league fixture, Dartford lost 1-0 away to lowly Hungerford Town but an improved performance in the F.A Trophy earned them a replay against National League side Boreham Wood.

The replay on Tuesday night turned out to be a long evening for the Darts as they went out of the F.A Trophy on penalties.  A dramatic injury time equaliser from Shaun Jeffers sent the replay into extra time with Dartford agonisingly on the verge of progressing to the second round. The Darts had earlier gone in front when Ryan Hayes curled in the opening goal six minutes into the second half. With just under twenty minutes remaining, Woods top scorer Bruno Andrade levelled the tie. However, minutes later Mills scored his first for the Darts to regain the lead. Shaun Jeffers popped up in stoppage time to keep Boreham Wood in the F.A Trophy and send the match into extra time.

No goals in the extra thirty minutes meant Dartford had to deal with the pressure of spot kicks. Unfortunately it was all too much despite Elliot Bradbrook scoring the first. Tom Murphy, Lyle Della-Verde and Alfie Pavey all missed from 12 yards whilst the hosts scored all their attempts to win 3-1 on penalties.

Nathan Collier could make his first start since returning to the Darts, he has missed the last two matches because he was cup tied. Alex Brown will serve his one match suspension for the red card he received in the F.A Trophy draw with Boreham Wood.

Braintree Town also played their replay on Tuesday night against Brackley Town of the National North, who they drew with 0-0 on the weekend. Like Dartford’s match, the sides still couldn’t break the deadlock going in at half time goalless. Then six minutes into the second half Brackley Town’s Matt Lowe gave the hosts the lead and with just over ten minutes left, Shane Byrne made it 2-0 to knock out the Iron in the first round.

The Irons have been steady all season and expiring defeat just once in their first nine games gave Brad Quinton’s side some foundations to build on. In that time, they won five, drew three and lost once. Whilst the last month has been patchy in form for Braintree Town, like the Darts they have failed to break away from the chasing pack but have put themselves well in contention of promotion.

In their last league outing the Iron beat Eastbourne Borough at home 3-2. Twice the Essex club had to come from behind, Phil Roberts netted his thirteenth and fourteenth of the season to equalise on both occasions, the striker is currently the top scorer in the National South. The winner came from the penalty spot which Bill Crook converted from 12 yards.

Head to Head
Braintree Town wins: 6 / Dartford wins: 2 / Draws: 3

Current League Form

Dartford (LWDWLW) Braintree Town (WLDLWW)
Hungerford Town A 0-1 Eastbourne Borough H 3-2
Poole Town A 1-0 Wealdstone A 1-3
Wealdstone H 3-3 Truro City H 1-1
Gloucester City H 4-1 Weston-super-Mare H 0-1
Truro City A 1-3 Poole Town A 3-0
St Albans City H 2-1 Bognor Regis Town H 3-0

Previous Meetings

08.08.2017 Braintree Town 2 Dartford 2
01.01.2015 Braintree Town 3 Dartford 0
26.12.2014 Dartford 0 Braintree Town 2
18.04.2014 Braintree Town 1 Dartford 0
24.08.2013 Dartford 0 Braintree Town 2
11.04.2013 Dartford 0 Braintree Town 0

Stats
Dartford have yet to play any of the current top seven at home this season, on the road against those same teams the Darts have picked up six points from 18.

In contrast Braintree Town have yet to beat a top half team on the road and have conceded 12 goals in three matches against those they have played.

The Darts are the top scorers in the division with 43 goals, Braintree Town are second with 42 goals.

At the half way stage of the season Dartford games have averaged 3.14 goals a game against a league average of 3.01.

On Tuesday night, Ronnie Vint made his 100th appearance in a Darts shirt, his 94th start for the club.

On This Day
Dartford have drawn four of their last five games on 23 December with the most recent coming eleven years ago in the Isthmian Division One South. A 2-2 away draw with Walton casuals was secured with goals by Ryan Hayes and Jay May. Three of those matches, all away from home have ended in 1-1, Histon in 2000 (Southern League Division One East), Hastings United in 1978 and Telford United in 1972 (both Southern Premier League). In the middle of those fixtures the Darts beat Merthyr Tydfil 4-2 at home in a F.A Trophy first round replay back in 1986.

Boreham Wood v Dartford

A goal from Tom Murphy earned Dartford a replay against Boreham Wood in the F.A Trophy, the two sides are set to decide who progresses on Tuesday night.

The Darts took on higher league opposition on Saturday and a  much improved performance saw then hold on with ten men. Boreham Wood’s Ricky Shakes gave the visitors the lead in the second half before Murphy equalised. Alex Brown was sent of with 21 minutes to go, the midfielder’s second dismissal of the campaign.

Tom Bonner, Ryan Hayes and Danny Harris all returned to the starting line up with Richard Sho-Silva, Lyle Della-Verde and Andy Pugh making way. Alfie Pavey took part by replacing Danny Mills with 12 minutes remaining, Pavey has been recovering from a chest infection. New signing Nathan Collier will still b cup tied after playing for Hampton and Richmond Borough in the previous round.

Boreham Wood will have Danny Woodards assessed after he was substituted on the weekend. Keiran Murtagh returns from suspension and will be available for selection.

Dartford manager, Tony Burman praised his side after the game, he spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk and said: “I thought it was a really good performance against a good side. They get a lot of people forward at once, with the two wing-backs and three forwards. We had to change our system a little bit, Elliot (Bradbrook) went a little deeper than I would have liked, but I thought we handled it really well”, he added: “It’s the best we’ve played for a little while”.

Boreham Wood boss Luke Garrard was also pleased enough but felt his team could have been better, he told www.borehamwoodfootballclub.co.uk:  “I wasn’t too unhappy with the result, I have got to be honest, because they have lost just one game at home all season and they are a team who are sitting at the top of the tree. I understand that it is a cup game and I understand that we were coming up against a team who are top of the league, but we have got an opportunity now on Tuesday to put some wrongs right”.

Head to Head
Dartford wins: 3 / Boreham Wood wins: 8 / Draws: 6

Current Form (FAC – F.A Cup / FAT – F.A Trophy / HSC – Hertfordshire Senior Cup)

Dartford (DLWWDW) Boreham Wood (DWWLWW)
Boreham Wood (FAT) H 1-1 Dartford (FAT) A 1-1
Hungerford Town A 0-1 AFC Fylde H 1-0
Poole Town A 1-0 Stevanage (HSC) H 4-3
Brentwood Town (FAT) A 2-1 Coventry City (FAC) A 0-3
Wealdstone H 3-3 Woking H 2-1
Gloucester City H 4-1 Maidstone United A 4-0

Previous Meetings

16.12.2017 Dartford 1 Boreham Wood 1
21.04.2012 Dartford 2 Boreham Wood 2
08.10.2011 Boreham Wood 3 Dartford 1
16.04.2011 Dartford 1 Boreham Wood 4
02.10.2010 Boreham Wood 3 Dartford 1
16.03.2010 Dartford 1 Boreham Wood 2

Stats
Dartford have only beaten Boreham Wood once away from home. The Darts solitary win came seven years ago in the Isthmian Premier League title winning campaign. Dartford have drawn two and lost the other five at Meadow Park.

Boreham Wood have won four of the last six meetings between the two clubs.

The Darts last kept a clean sheet at home on 9 September in their 3-0 win over Chippenham Town, a run of seven home games without a clean sheet.

On This Day
Dartford have won their last three matches on 19 December with the last victory coming two years ago at Whitehawk. A very good defensive display helped the Darts keep a clean sheet as Andy Pugh scored the only goal of the game. It was the first fixture on this day for 17 years, back in 1998 the Darts beat Corby Town 2-1 in the Southern League Southern Division. In 1989, Dartford progressed in the Southern League Cup winning against Margate 3-1 in a third round tie. A year before in the same competition at the same stage Dartford drew 1-1 away to Wealdstone. The last F.A Trophy match played on 19 December didn’t go so well as the Darts lost 5-1 to rivals Maidstone United in 1987.

Dartford v Boreham Wood

Dartford will want to make home advantage count this weekend when they take on Boreham Wood in the F.A Trophy first round.

Leading the National South on goal difference, the Darts aim to cause an upset against the National League side. If previous results against the Wood are anything to go by then it will be a difficult afternoon. Dartford have only beaten the Hertfordshire club three times in 16 attempts, the last victory came in 2010. Since then Boreham Wood won four in a row before a 2-2 draw in their last encounter almost five years years ago.

The Darts form at home is a major factor to why they are clinging on to pole position in the National South, however current performances have been patchy. A 1-0 away defeat to Hungerford Town last weekend left manager Tony Burman disappointed, he spoke to www.dartfordfc.com and said: “Once again it’s unfortunate that when we have started a match in a good position at the top of the table, we have managed to lose a game that in my opinion we should have won”.

Burman feels his side’s attitude was excellent and defensively they weren’t troubled until Tom Meecham’s winning penalty. He added: “Defensively we were sound and I can’t remember Deren having to make a save throughout the game. Going forward we have created a number of chances in the first half and many more in the second half, unfortunately these chances were not converted into goals”.

New signing Nathan Collier was unavailable after becoming a father, he is waiting for his first start since re-joining the Darts. Duane Ofori-Acheampong is getting closer to becoming more involved after a long tern injury and top scorer, Alfie Pavey has been out with a chest infection. Danny Harris returned to the bench after a few games out of the side.

Dartford reached the second round of the competition last term and can be inspired by the performance that got them there. In the first round they were drawn out to rivals Dover Athletic of the National League. After a replay the Darts went on to win 2-1, unfortunately the run ended in round two against Chelmsford City.

In the last meeting against Boreham Wood five years ago, Tom Bonner and Tom Champion were lining up on the same side. The Darts won promotion and after a year they both moved on to Cambridge United. With Bonner back in a Darts shirt the two will be up against each other, Champion made 150 starting appearance for the Darts scoring seven times.

When the Darts won the Isthmian Premier League in 2010, Boreham Wood won the playoffs. Since then Dartford have visited the National League and returned to the National South. The Wood may have taken longer to get to the top flight of non-league football but they have held their own in the division above.

Currently on a run of 11 games unbeaten, manager Luke Garrard believes his side can achieve good things, he told www.nationalleague.org.uk: “I think this group has got something, when it gets going I think we can achieve something this season, they have bought into the football club and what the management is asking of them”. Part of their success has been down to Bruno Andrade’s ten league goals this season, leaving the Wood seventh in the National League standings.

Garrard, who was appointed in 2015 was the youngest manager in the top five divisions of English football, he has led the club to nineteenth and eleventh place finishes. Last season they reached the F.A Trophy quarter final beating Sutton United in round three before losing to Lincoln City. The run was the club’s best in the competition since 2006 when they lost 3-0 on aggregate to Woking at the semi-final stage.

This term, Boreham Wood’s cup pedigree has been enhanced with a F.A Cup fourth qualifying round win over rivals St Albans City. Victory set up a first round tie with League One side Blackpool which the Wood won 2-1 after being a goal down, Blair Turgott and Dan Holman were the goalscorers to earn the club their first football league scalp in their 70 year history. The cup run did end against Coventry City in round two as the Hertfordshire side lost 3-0. Along with the league results Garrard secured November’s Manager of the Month in the National League.

The Darts have met Boreham Wood three times in cup competitions all in the F.A Cup at the fourth qualifying stage. In 1977, the Wood won 3-2 and five years later a 1-1 draw was followed up by a 2-1 victory for Dartford.

Head to Head
Dartford wins: 3 / Boreham Wood wins: 8 / Draws: 5

Current Form (FAC – F.A Cup / FAT – F.A Trophy / HSC – Hertfordshire Senior Cup)

Dartford (LWWDWL) Boreham Wood (WWLWWD)
Hungerford Town A 0-1 AFC Fylde H 1-0
Poole Town A 1-0 Stevanage (HSC) H 4-3
Brentwood Town (FAT) A 2-1 Coventry City (FAC) A 0-3
Wealdstone H 3-3 Woking H 2-1
Gloucester City H 4-1 Maidstone United A 4-0
Truro City A 1-3 Macclesfield Town A 0-0

Previous Meetings

21.04.2012 Dartford 2 Boreham Wood 2
08.10.2011 Boreham Wood 3 Dartford 1
16.04.2011 Dartford 1 Boreham Wood 4
02.10.2010 Boreham Wood 3 Dartford 1
16.03.2010 Dartford 1 Boreham Wood 2
27.02.2010 Boreham Wood 0 Dartford 1

Stats
Dartford have only beaten Boreham Wood once away from home. The Darts solitary win came seven years ago in the Isthmian Premier League title winning campaign. Dartford have drawn two and lost the other five at Meadow Park.

Boreham Wood have won four of the last five meetings between the two clubs. The 2-2 draw in April 2012 ended a four game winning streak for the Hertfordshire side.

In all competitions, Dartford have won eight, drawn two and lost twice at Princes Park this term. In seven of those games the Darts have scored three or more goals.

The Darts last kept a clean sheet at home on 9 September in their 3-0 win over Chippenham Town, a run of seven home games without a clean sheet.

On This Day
Dartford last played on 16 December nine years ago earning a 2-2 draw at home to Metropolitan Police. The Isthmian Division One South fixture ended all square with the Darts goals coming from Richard Avery and Ryan Hayes. The Darts last win on this day was in 2000 when they beat Hastings Town 1-0 in the Southern League Division One East, three years later Dartford lost 2-0 to Ashford Town. Back in 1995 a resounding 5-0 victory was recorded by the Darts as they beat Tunbridge Wells in the Kent League.

Hungerford Town v Dartford

Dartford begin December at the top of the National South and will visit Hungerford Town this weekend in an attempt to keep a three-point lead.

The Darts have spent almost three weeks in pole position with just six points separating the top eight. Looking for back to back away victories in the league for the first time this season, Dartford take on the Crusaders who themselves are desperate for a win.

Hungerford Town have picked up just one point from their last five National South fixtures, however they did manage to draw 0-0 with Dartford on the opening day of the campaign. Last term, the Berkshire club beat the Darts at Bulpit Lane 2-0 with goals from Louie Soares and Stefan Brown.

Tony Burman has made his intent clear with two signings in the last week. Danny Mills has joined the strike force from local rivals Ebbsfleet United and Nathan Collier returns to the club from Hampton and Richmond Borough. Mills was prolific in his spell at Whitehawk at this level scoring almost a goal every other game over a five year period. At Ebbsfleet United he has had limited chances to shine making just ten appearances and scoring once.

Mills spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk and said: “Going from playing 250 games in five years to not knowing if I’ll be in the squad has been really difficult”, he added: “But there comes a time when you have to make a decision. I want to go out and play football and after being used to playing so much, I wanted that feeling again. I wanted that excitement of looking forward to a game on a Saturday, knowing that you’re going to go out and play”.

He continued: “I wanted to go to a team that was challenging, up there at the top of the table, fighting for promotion. I want to play for something every week, I didn’t want to go to a team that was mid-table so when the opportunity to go to Dartford came up, it was a no-brainer”.

Mills went straight into the starting eleven last weekend as Dartford beat nine men Poole Town 1-0 in Dorset. A good defensive display and Richard Sho-Silva’s early winning goal was enough to earn three vital points. The result made even better considering the absentees of Ronnie Vint, Tom Bonner (who became a father this week) and Danny Harris, midfielder Alex Brown slotted into right back to replace Harris. In midfield, Lee Noble was also missing through suspension but he will return from his ban this weekend.

Manager Tony Burman told www.dartfordfc.com: “After Saturdays win, I felt we have played a lot better in previous games and lost but on a positive note we defended really well and looked organised defensively throughout the game. After conceding quite a few goals over the last month it was nice to keep a clean sheet and once again from a good defensive display”.

He commented: “When Richard scored our goal early in the game we had quite a few chances throughout the rest of the game to finish our opponents off, but good goalkeeping kept Poole in the game I felt. Overall with Tom Bonner, Danny Harris, Lee Noble all missing and with Alfie Pavey trying to play not feeling 100% all in all I’m delighted we gained three points”.

The signing of Collier adds further depth to the squad as well as versatility, he previously played 117 times for the Darts between 2012 and 2015. Collier has had spells with Eastbourne Borough and Hampton and Richmond Borough since leaving Princes Park.

Hungerford Town were one of the surprise packages last season but have had to deal with the departure of former boss Bobby Wilkinson, who joined Wealdstone in early in the campaign. Jon Boardman and Ian Herring are now in charge of a team sitting 18th in the National South table.

Last weekend the Crusaders ended a run of six consecutive defeat in all competitions with a 1-1 draw against Chelmsford City. Tom Meechan opened his Hungerford Town account in his first game back from a loan spell with St Neots Town, where he scored six goals in 14 appearances. Meechan’s strike was the first in five games for the Crusaders in a spell where they have netted just three times in their last eight outings.

Struggling with injuries and suspensions Hungerford Town had four academy players on the bench against the Clarets. Former Dartford loanee Alex Wall will continue his suspension for his red card in the F.A Trophy defeat versus Billericay Town, the same side that beat them 6-1 in the F.A Cup. Riak John is also unavailable whilst co-manager Ian Herring returned from his two-game ban in their last league match. Matt Williams has been signed from Evesham United to bolster the defence meaning Darnell Smith’s loan spell from Barnet has not been renewed.

Head to Head

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

Previous Meetings

05.08.2017 Dartford 0 Hungerford Town 0
14.04.2017 Hungerford Town 2 Dartford 0
27.08.2016 Dartford 2 Hungerford Town 0

Current League Form

Hungerford Town (LLWDLW) Dartford (WDWLWW)
Chelmsford City A 1-1 Poole Town A 1-0
Truro City H 0-1 Wealdstone H 3-3
Wealdstone A 0-1 Gloucester City H 4-1
Havant & Waterlooville H 0-1 Truro City A 1-3
Eastbourne Borough H 0-1 St Albans City H 2-1
St Albans City H 0-0 Bath City A 2-1

Stats
In the three encounters that have taken place between Dartford and Hungerford Town, the away side has never scored.

In the last six league games featuring Hungerford Town there has only been six goals scored at a goal a game. By contrast Dartford have seen a total of 22 goals scored at an average of 3.66 per game.

In all competitions, if Dartford win on the weekend they will record their longest winning away run this season of three consecutive victories.

On This Day
Dartford last won on the 9 December back in 1995 when they beat Ramsgate 3-0 in the Kent League First Division. A year later they were beaten 3-1 in a F.A Trophy third qualifying round replay against Dulwich Hamlet. In 2006, the Darts drew 1-1 with Dover Athletic, Brendon Cass scoring for Dartford at Princes Park. Nine years ago was the last time the Darts played on this day in a 4-2 Kent Senior Cup first round defeat to Bromley.

Poole Town v Dartford

Dartford travel to the Jurassic coast this weekend starting the day top of the National South when they visit Poole Town.

If their last trip to Tatnam Road is anything to go by, then it should be an entertaining afternoon. The Darts played their final game of last season against the Dolphins needing a win to clinch third place. Andy Pugh’s ninth minute tap in set Dartford on their way. However, Poole Town came from behind with a headed goal by Marvin Brooks and a second from Steve Devlin before half time. The game swung in second half injury time when Tom Murphy hooked the ball over his head from close range, then six minutes into stoppage time Lee Noble lashed home a winner.

Despite leading the National South table, Dartford’s advantage is minimal with the top eight separated by just four points. Recent form has been patchy with the last four results showing the Darts inconsistencies at the moment. Last weekend a late 2-1 F.A Trophy victory versus Brentwood Town masked the performance, Lee Noble scoring the winner against his former club who play two divisions below. The midfielder, who was sent off in the last league match, a 3-3 draw with Wealdstone, is suspended this weekend.

The two previous fixtures saw Dartford beat Gloucester City 4-1 at home but lose 3-1 down at Truro City. During the week manager, Tony Burman spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk and said: “The league is crying out for someone to go on a run. Each week, the results become stranger for the teams in the top few places and I’ve got to really start to look at it”, he added: “We’ve got to start trying to be consistent. We’ve done all right but I want better than all right and the players know that”, he continued: “Some of the performances have been below-par and you have to go through that in a season. Hopefully, you put things right and I’m sure we’ll be able to do that and have a run where we’re picking up wins instead of draws”.

Poole Town would have made the playoffs last season, but ground grading prevented them from participating. After winning the Southern League the year before, a fifth place finish was a great achievement for the club. This season they have failed to win at home picking up just three points out of 27 available. The opportunity for Dartford to improve their away form is their for the taking but Burman remains cautious, he commented: “Poole are a good side and they’re playing a lot better than their league position suggests. It’s a big pitch down there and I’m expecting a tough game. We’ve got to go to these away games and start picking up more points. Rather than drawing, we’ve got to try to win the games”.

The Dolphins went out of the F.A Trophy last weekend losing 3-1 to St Albans City and on Tuesday they won a Dorset Senior Cup game 10-2 against Hamworthy United. Manager Tom Killick, now in his thirteenth year can look towards the 4-0 away win at Eastbourne Borough at the start of the month for inspiration, however his side have lost their last two league games without scoring.

Warren Bentley signed for Poole Town this term and is their main goal threat, scoring 11 goals in 15 games in all competitions. The striker was prolific at Winchester City before joining Gosport Borough and then Hungerford Town. Bentley is only one league goal behind Dartford’s top scorer Alfie Pavey who has netted 11 National South goals this campaign.

The recent run of results has led to Poole Town chairman, Chris Reeves urging fans to turn up this weekend. In a statement published on www.pooletownfc.co.uk, he said: “If on Saturday against league leaders Dartford there is a bumper turnout of fans, all showing absolute backing and encouragement for a group of players who in the last few seasons have given us so much, that could be the very thing that makes the difference”.

Head to Head
Poole Town wins: 15 / Dartford wins: 16 / Draws: 5

Current League Form

Poole Town (LLWDLW) Dartford (DWLWWL)
Hampton & Richmond A 0-1 Wealdstone H 3-3
Braintree Town H 0-3 Gloucester City H 4-1
Eastbourne Borough A 4-0 Truro City A 1-3
Concord Rangers H 1-1 St Albans City H 2-1
Gloucester City H 0-3 Bath City A 2-1
Havant & Waterlooville A 2-2 Chelmsford City A 0-1

Previous Meetings

29.04.2017 Poole Town 2 Dartford 3
03.12.2016 Dartford 2 Poole Town 1
14.03.1992 Dartford 4 Poole Town 0
02.11.1991 Poole Town 0 Dartford 0
06.04.1991 Poole Town 1 Dartford 0
24.11.1990 Dartford 0 Poole Town 0

Stats
Dartford have lost three of their last four away games in the National South

The Darts have won four of the last six away matches against Poole Town (D1, L1)

Dartford have conceded in each of their last four away games in the league

The Darts have played only three teams currently in the bottom half of the table away from home this season. Whitehawk and Bath City were beaten but Dartford lost to Weston-super-Mare.

On This Day
A second round Kent Senior Trophy win against Folkestone Invicta took place 22 years ago. The Darts won the second round tie 1-0 against one of the favourites. Dean Bowey scored the winner in front of a crowd of 327. Victory kick started Dartford’s run to the final after beating Whitstable Town 2-1, Furness 1-0 then claim the trophy with a 3-0 win over Chatham Town. Since then, in 2006 Dartford have beaten Fleet Town 3-0 thanks to a Brendon Cass hat-trick. Two years later Dartford beat Margate 3-2 in the Isthmian League Cup second round, Sean Eferakorho, Rob Haworth and Ryan Hayes all getting a goal. The last match on 2 December was in 2014 when the Darts lost 2-0 in the National League against Eastleigh.