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Wealdstone v Dartford

Dartford will be back in F.A Trophy action on Tuesday night when the try and win a place in the last eight of the competition.

A week ago The Darts were pegged back twice as Wealdstone forced a replay to take the tie back to St George’s Stadium. Pressure from the Dartford attack was rewarded on 27 minutes when The Stones goalkeeper Jonathan North spilt the ball, Danny Harris followed up and put Dartford in front. On the stroke of half time Wealdstone equalised courtesy of Richard Jolly’s header.

Five minutes after the break The Darts were back ahead when substitute Lee Noble speculatively volleyed the ball goal wards from a headed clearance. Noble’s shot took a deflection off Stones defender Alan Massey and the ball nestled in North’s goal. Wealdstone pushed for an equaliser and in the last ten minutes managed a second equaliser with Chris O’Leary’s stunning header hit the underside of the cross bar and went in.

The stalemate was not ideal for both clubs, Tony Burman spoke to PURE DFC after last weeks F.A Trophy tie and said: “We don’t want a replay and I don’t think Wealdstone want a replay either. They are doing well and have got an opportunity in their league but nevertheless that is what we’ve got”.

After a fortnight without a match Burman felt his side’s first half performance was ‘excellent for thirty five minutes’, he added “Wealdstone have had a ten minute spell in the first half where we’ve made some mistakes, gave free kicks away and we’ve been punished. In the second half we’ve taken the lead and to be fair to Wealdstone they have come and had a go, that’s typical cup football. It doesn’t matter who you are playing, a team higher than you or lower than you, that’s how cup football works out”.

On the weekend The Darts suffered disappointment in the Conference South as they were edged out by league leaders Woking. The 1-0 defeat leaves Dartford fourteen points adrift from top spot with two games in hand. Alan Inns yet again scored early on to give The Cards the lead on three minutes, a minute quicker than his opener at Princes Park back in December. The Surrey side held out as Dartford dominated but could not find a breakthrough.

Wealdstone had beetr luck on the weekend with an impressive 5-2 home victory against struggling Aveley. Richard Jolly’s first goal was cancelled out by Aveley’s Troy Powell. Lee Chappell put The Stones back in front to leave the score 2-1 at the break. Spencer Harrison levelled the match again but The Stone pulled away in the final twenty minutes. Kevin Mully was unfortuante enough to score an own goal, Scott Fitzgerald netted a fourth and Jolly made it five with his 32nd goal this season. The Stones are now eighth in the Isthmian Premier League and six points behind the play off zone.

The winners of Tuesday nights replay will face Conference Premier’s Cambridge United or Conference North’s Guiseley who also play on Tuesday.

Team News

Elliot Bradbrook left the field of play after just seven minutes in the last meeting between the sides. Dartford’s captain pulled a hamstring and missed the Woking game on Saturday. Matt Jones also missed the top of the table clash on the weekend when he collided with Wealdstone’s Chris O’Leary. Paul Goodacre returned on Saturday and played against the side he was injured against back in December.

Statistics

Dartford (2nd – Conference South) versus Wealdstone (8th Isthmian Premier)

Current Form (league and cup) – FAT = F.A Trophy / KSC = Kent Senior Cup / AET = After Extra Time

Last five Wealdstone matches at home Last five Dartford matches away
Won 5-2 v Aveley Lost 0-1 v Woking
Won 2-0 v Tooting and Mitcham Won 4-2 v Tonbridge Angels (AET) / (KSC)
Drew 1-1 v Cray Wanderers Won 4-1 v Staines Town
Won 2-1 v Barrow (FAT) Won 3-1 v Hampton and Richmond
Won 1-0 v Lewes Won 4-1 v Havant and Waterlooville

Did you know…

Dartford’s failure to score against Woking was their first blank in the league for 21 games and ended a seven game unbeaten run.

Wealdstone have lost just once in their last 19 competitive fixtures and will playing their ninth F.A Trophy tie this season.

Lee Burns made his 100th start for The Darts in all competitions when he lined up against Wealdstone last week.

 

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