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Sutton United v Dartford

Dartford travel to Gander Green Lane on Saturday and hope to move a step closer to securing a top two finish and complete a double over Sutton United.

The Darts sit in second place seven points behind leaders Woking with only three games to go. Mathematically the title is not yet over, however a win for Woking on Saturday will end all hopes. To secure second spot Dartford have a six point cushion and one more win from the final three matches should be enough, The Darts have a 17 goal advantage over third place Welling United.

Noble celebrates his delightful goal against Sutton United

Just under a month ago Dartford emphatically beat Sutton United in an incredible 6-1 victory. Lee Noble opened the scoring at Princes Park when he chipped goalkeeper Kevin Scriven. Four minutes later Adam Green scored a penalty  to double the lead and Harry Beautyman pulled a goal back with a well taken header on the half hour mark.

In the second half Dartford stunned their opponents which started off with Danny Harris’ diving header. Luke Wilkinson powered in another header and Elliot Bradbrook made it 5-1 with an effort from 25 yards. Jacob Erskine became the sixth different scorer for The Darts to earn a tremendous result.

Over the Easter period The Darts were held 0-0 at home to Chelmsford City before recording their 24th league win of the season on Easter Monday. What made Dartford’s win more pleasing was the 2-1 triumph away at Bromley was thier first at Hayes Lane in the league since 1975.

Danny Harris netted his 15th league of the season by capitalising on Moses Swaibu’s slip. Harris ran thorugh on goal and calmly side footed beyond goalkeeper Joe Welch to give The Darts the lead on 22 minutes. Four minutes later Lee Noble delivered a delicious free kick which Luke Wilkinson headed home for his fourth goal in Dartford colours. The game could have been put to bed before Michael Malcolm scored a free kick for Bromley with 13 minutes to go. Tony Burmen’s men weathered the Bromley pressure to hold on to a victory.

The U’s should be a tougher prospect on their home patch having gone unbeaten in the Isthmian Premier League last season and lost just twice in the Conference South during 2011/2012.

Sutton United almost confirmed a playoff place of their own on Saturday with a win over Dover Athletic. The 2-0 triumph at The Crabble increased their lead over The Whites to ten points meaning they cannot drop out the top five, unless Basingstoke Town win all five of their remaining fixtures. First half goals from Tony Taggart and Craig Watkins earned the U’s their eleventh home win of the season.

Paul Doswell’s side have had an excellent first season in the Conference South and their only loss in the last 13 matches was against Dartford. The U’s have occupied a playoff position since mid September and reached the second round of the F.A Cup

Team News

Jon Wallis has a fractured bone on his ankle, Richard Graham is expected to be available next weekend. Deren Ibrahim is out with a dislocated shoulder for the rest of the season. Danny Harris will be suspended for his sending off against Maidenhead United.

Sutton United will be missing Simon Downer through suspension for his red card against Hampton and Richmond. Lewis Hunt is currently out injured so Paul Doswell has recalled Osa Obamwonyi from his loan spell at Bognor Regis Town.

Statistics (league only)

Sutton United (4th) v Dartford (2nd)

Current Form

Last five Suton United matches at home Last five Dartford matches away
Drew 1-1 v Bromley Won 2-1 v Bromley
Won 3-2 v Chelmsford City Won 1-0 v Eastbourne Borough
Drew 1-1 v Eastbourne Borough Lost 0-1 v Dorchester Town
Won 2-0 v Havant and Waterlooville Drew 1-1 v Maidenhead United
Won 3-2 v Weston Super-Mare Won 1-0 v Tonbridge Angels

Attendances

Sutton United average home attendance: 652

Highest home attendance: 1332 v Maidenhead United/ Lowest: 357 v Eastleigh

Dartford average away attendance: 857

Highest away attendance: 2528 v Woking / Lowest: 355 v Maidenhead United

Did you know…

Only Woking have lost fewer games than Dartford and Sutton United. The Darts and The U’s have only lost six times each in the Conferrence South this season

Whoever wins on Saturday will boast the best record against the other teams in the playoffs, a draw will mean Sutton United maintain a better record over Dartford

Team Pld W D L F A PTS GD
Sutton United 5 3 1 1 11 13 10 -2
Dartford 5 2 3 0 8 2 9 +6
Welling United 6 1 3 2 7 8 6 -1
Chelmsford City 6 0 3 3 6 9 3 -3

 

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