Rss

Archives for : East Thurrock United

East Thurrock United v Dartford

Dartford know completing a double over East Thurrock United this weekend could propel them back in the playoff places in the National South.

The Darts won the corresponding fixture back on Bank Holiday August beating the Rocks 2-0 at Princes Park, victory ended a run of three consecutive losses at the time. Tom Bonner fired the ball home at the far post in the first half before Higgins had his penalty saved by Deren Ibrahim. The three points were wrapped up in the second half when Ben Greenhalgh’s diving header doubled the advantage.

It was the second win in a row against East Thurrock United following on from the 1-0 triumph in April. Dartford visited Rookery Hill during their title run in and needed victory to add pressure on Havant and Waterlooville. It took until the 78th minute for the Darts to break the deadlock. Ryan Hayes worked his way down the right-wing, delivered early into the box and Danny Mills arrived with a brilliant diving header to clinch the win. Coincidentally, in the season before, Hayes was the goalscorer in the same minute to earn a 1-1 draw in Essex.

Mills came back to haunt the Darts on Boxing Day as two former players scored for rivals Welling United in the Kent derby. Goals in either half from Josh Hill and Mills earned the Wings bragging rights and pushed Dartford down to ninth place in the National South. The two sides will meet again on New Year’s Day.

Joint Manager, Jamie Coyle spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk and commented: “It was disappointing, in the end we flattered to deceive a little bit. The first half was a bitty game, it was fiercely contested, especially in the middle of the park, and outside a free header from a set piece, it was a 0-0 game going in at half-time”, he continued: “We got into great positions in the final third, especially the first half, and our quality was really poor. That was the reason we couldn’t build any momentum. We have to do better. We had plenty of the ball in the first half and we just didn’t capitalise on it”.

Coyle justified putting Lee Noble, Ryan Hayes and Elliot Bradbrook into the five man midfield to provide vital experience, however the ploy didn’t come off, he added: “We put players in the team that know the importance of these derby games, that have been in it before and have got success. It wasn’t just them, as a collective we weren’t anywhere near the standards that we’ve set and individually Welling shaded the battles and that’s the reason they won the game”. Defeat was Dartford’s third in five competitive matches.

East Thurrock United are relying on their home form to keep in touch with the teams above them. On their travels they have picked up just one point from eleven games, yet at Rookery Hill they have collected 13 points. On Boxing Day, John Coventry’s side were beaten 2-0 by local rivals Concord Rangers conceding goals to Alex Wall and Danny Green.

Leading up to their Boxing Day loss the Rocks had lost consecutive fixtures 3-1 against Oxford City then Slough Town. However, they did take a scalp in an Essex derby early in December beating Chelmsford City 2-0 at home thanks to first half goals from Ben Marlow and Sam Higgins. At the start of the month East Thurrock United lost to Hampton and Richmond Borough in a game that saw former Dart, Danny Harris red carded.

Harris joined East Thurrock United in the summer from the Darts where he made 400 appearances and scored 75 goals. He has played the majority of the season alongside Lee Burns, another former Dartford favourite.  Burns top scoring in the Isthmian Premier League title winning campaign and winning Player of the Year at Dartford. The former striker moved to right back until he left the Darts in 2016 after 278 appearances and 33 goals. Sam Higgins is the one the Rocks look towards for goals, the striker top scored in the National South last season with 25 goals and is leading the way for the Essex club this term with five so far.

With only Weston-super-Mare below the Rocks in the table, the Essex club are four points from safety. Manager, John Coventry outlined his thoughts in East Thurrock United’s matchday programme on Wednesday, he said: “No one at the club has given up on staying in this league, but the problems of working with a small budget are showing”. He added: “I’m not one to bang on about money, we are what we are and have to live within the means we know we have, but it does make a difference when talking to players. There are certainly some inflated wage structures in this division”, he continued: “Of course, when you’re getting a thousand coming through the turnstiles, it makes a world of difference. I have been making changes to the squad for varying reasons, and have brought in some new players who, I have to admit I did not know a great deal about”.

Head to Head

East Thurrock United wins: 3 / Dartford wins: 3 / Draws: 1

Current League Form

East Thurrock United (LLLWLD) Dartford (LWDLWW)
Concord Rangers H 0-2 Welling United A 0-2
Slough Town A 1-3 Hungerford Town H 2-1
Oxford City A 1-3 Slough Town H 1-1
Chelmsford City H 2-0 Torquay United H 0-2
Hampton and Richmond A 0-1 Hampton and Richmond A 1-0
Weston-super-Mare A 1-1 Oxford City H 3-2

Previous Meetings

27.08.2018 Dartford 2 East Thurrock United 0
17.04.2018 East Thurrock United 0 Dartford 1
28.08.2017 Dartford 0 East Thurrock United 1
07.01.2017 Dartford 6 East Thurrock United 1
10.09.2016 East Thurrock United 1 Dartford 1
30.04.2005 Dartford 0 East Thurrock United 3
28.08.2004 East Thurrock United 2 Dartford 1

Stats

On Boxing Day, Elliot Bradbrook, Lee Noble and Ryan Hayes all featured in Dartford’s starting eleven for the first time since the final day of last season at Bognor Regis Town.

Dartford’s competitive record in 2018 stands at…

Total – Won 25 Drawn 7 Lost 13 Scored 75 Conceded 55

Home – Won 15 Drawn 3 Lost 6 Scored 41 Conceded 27

Away – Won 10 Drawn 4 Lost 7 Scored 34 Conceded 28

On This Day

Dartford are unbeaten in their last five matches on 29 December, last playing out a 1-1 draw with Cambridge United in 2012. Harry Crawford’s goal for the Darts was cancelled out by Michael Gash at Princes Park. In 2009, Dartford swept aside Canvey Island 5-2 with two goals from Lee Burns and one each for Jamie Coyle, Rob Haworth and Danny Harris. The Darts drew 2-2 away to Aveley in 2007 and beat Bashley 1-0 at home in 2001 and defeated VS Rugby 2-0 at Watling Street in 1990.

Dartford v East Thurrock United

Dartford are in action on Bank Holiday Monday with a home National South fixture against Essex side East Thurrock United.

After a slow start to the season Adam Flanagan and Jamie Coyle will be searching for their second home win, versus a side Dartford have had contrasting fortunes against in their last two meetings at Princes Park.

A year ago, East Thurrock United caused an upset by visiting the home of the Darts and coming away with a 1-0 win. On loan goalkeeper, Jordan Beeney could only tip Reece Harris’ free kick onto the crossbar for last season’s National South top scorer Sam Higgins to score the rebound, it was Dartford’s first home defeat of the campaign. At the time the Rocks were flying high in the league as they went ten unbeaten, but they ended up the campaign in fifteenth.

In the home match a season before, the Darts trounced the Essex club 6-1. Clinical in front of goal, six different scorers found the net starting with a second minute Tom Bonner header. Alex Brown expertly hit a twenty yard volley to double the lead and by half-time the Darts were 4-1 up. Tom Murphy scored on his home debut before Tom Wraight pulled a goal back and Andy Pugh scored from close range. The second half yielded two more goals, one from Ryan Hayes and the other an Elliot Bradbrook spot kick.

Two players that will get a Princes Park welcome will be former Darts Lee Burns and Danny Harris. The pair followed suit starting out as attacking players with Burns top scoring in the Isthmian Premier League title winning campaign and winning Player of the Year at Dartford. The former striker moved to right back until he left the Darts in 2016 after 278 appearances and 33 goals. Danny Harris joined East Thurrock United and he started out at Dartford on the right wing before taking Burns’ place at full back, the hard working Harris made 400 appearances and scored 75 goals.

Dartford made four changes in their last game against Hungerford Town to the team that were beaten 3-0 at home to Wealdstone. Chez Isaac, Billy Roast, Kudus Oyenuga and Delano Sam-Yorke were all put on the bench and in came Simon Mensah, Alfie Cue, Elliot Bradbrook and Jamie Philpot, the latter two returning from injury. Even so, the Darts were unable to prevent a third straight loss without scoring as Hungerford Town picked up their first win of the season. Cue, Philpot and Ben Greenhalgh all had chances, but it was the home side that clinched victory after 58 minutes with a Conor Lynch strike.

East Thurrock United lost their opening five games and took on newly promoted Slough Town on the weekend. John Coventry’s side won their first of the season to get their points tally moving upwards,.The Rocks in some sense were unlucky in their first two outings by conceding last minute goals which condemned them to defeat. On the opening day, the Essex club faced a difficult match with recently relegated Woking, which was decided by a 90th minute Max Kretzschmar penalty. Dulwich Hamlet who had won promotion last term to the National South, beat East Thurrock United when Afolabi Akinyemi netted a final minute winner.

Another team joining the National South from the division above, Torquay United beat the Rocks thanks to two Rauri Keating goals. John Coventry’s side were then beaten 1-0 by Eastbourne Borough and Gloucester City before their maiden win on Saturday. In their clash with the Tigers, East Thurrock United had the experienced former England international Paul Konchesky and Ashley Miller sent off, Konchesky has since left the club after just five games.

Dartford’s last game against East Thurrock United was just four months ago. Chasing the league title, the Darts won 1-0 when Danny Mills headed in the winner twelve minutes from time.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 2 / East Thurrock United wins: 3 / Draws: 1

Current Form

Dartford (LLLDWW) East Thurrock United (WLLLLL)
Hungerford Town A 0-1 Slough Town H 1-0
Wealdstone H 0-3 Gloucester City A 0-1
Concord Rangers A 0-2 Eastbourne Borough H 0-1
Hemel Hempstead Town H 0-0 Torquay United A 0-2
Chelmsford City H 1-0 Dulwich Hamlet A 1-2
Bath City A 2-1 Woking H 0-1

Previous Meetings

17.04.2018 East Thurrock United 0 Dartford 1
28.08.2017 Dartford 0 East Thurrock United 1
07.01.2017 Dartford 6 East Thurrock United 1
10.09.2016 East Thurrock United 1 Dartford 1
30.04.2005 Dartford 0 East Thurrock United 3
28.08.2004 East Thurrock United 2 Dartford 1

Stats

The home side have failed to score in half of the meetings between Dartford and East Thurrock United, whilst the away team have always managed at least a goal.

Princes Park has hosted five August Bank Holiday matches with the Darts winning two, drawing one and losing two. Aveley were beaten 4-0 in 2007 and three years later Dartford drew 1-1 with Ebbsfleet United. Bromley were defeated 3-1 in 2011, Ebbsfleet United won 1-0 at Princes Park three years ago and East Thurrock United won 1-0 last term.

Dartford have failed to score in their last four games for the first time since 1985. The last time they went five games without a goal was in February 1975.

On This Day

Deren Ibrahim grabbed national headlines when he scored a free kick from inside his own half. Two years ago, the goalkeeper opened the scoring at home to Hungerford Town setting up a 2-0 win, Alex Brown scored the second goal. Unbeaten in the last five games on 27 August, the Darts have enjoyed this day in recent years. In 2012, Dartford famously beat Cambridge United when Nathan Collier’s deflected shot turned out to be the winner at the Abbey Stadium. Danny Harris scored a lucky goal to open the scoring, but his goal was cancelled out by Cambridge United’s James Jennings. In 2007, Jay May scored a Princes Park hat-trick as the Darts beat Aveley 4-0. Brendon Cass scored the other goal and Dartford went on to win the Isthmian Premier League title that season. Seventeen years ago, Dartford won a local derby 4-0 against then rivals Erith and Belverdere in the Southern League Division One East. Only Chelmsford City have taken points off Dartford on the 27 August in the last 24 years and that was a 0-0 draw in 2011.

National League South Season Preview 2018/2019 – Part Two

 Dartford | Dulwich Hamlet | East Thurrock UnitedEastbourne Borough | Gloucester CityHampton and Richmond Borough

Dartford

Founded: 1888 / Ground: Princes Park

A new era begins for the Darts after the resignation of club legend Tony Burman. The former manager left his position in the summer after fourteen years at the helm but will be involved with the academy. Starting out as joint favourites last season, Dartford had a strong squad only to suffer final day heartbreak and lose the title on goal difference. The Kent club did lead the table for long periods of the campaign but just couldn’t break away and finished runners up. The Darts were the top scorers in the National South partly thanks to the league’s Player of the Season Alfie Pavey. It has been a big summer for the playoff semi-finalists as they look to go one better.

Last Season

National South: 2nd

F.A Cup: 1st Round

F.A Trophy: 1st Round

County Cup: 2nd Round

League Top Scorer: Alfie Pavey (22 goals)

Average Attendance: 1053 (1st in National South)

The Managers – Adam Flanagan and Jamie Coyle

They played in defence for the Darts and won titles together in 2008 and 2010, first the Isthmian Division One North then the Isthmian Premier. Flanagan captained the side during the latter championship victory at centre back, Coyle alongside him at full back. The pair moved into management taking different routes, Flanagan won promotion to the Isthmian Premier League via the playoffs at Brentwood Town, whilst Coyle continued playing going up to the National League with Maidstone United. Coyle moved on to Welling United and in his only campaign as manager guided the Wings to tenth in the Nation South last term. Flanagan came to Dartford after three  years with Concord Rangers.

The Summer

The influence Burman had on the players that were at the club is evident in the fact that many have left. Loyal servants Ryan Hayes and Danny Harris depart having played 980 times for the Darts combined. Alex Brown switches to Margate, Lyle Della-Verde to Braintree Town, but the biggest loss was top scorer and National South’s Player of the Year Alfie Pavey to champions Havant and Waterlooville. On top of that the trio of Nathan Collier, Duane Ofori-Acheampong and Berti Schotterl all moved to Woking. So, with the squad numbers dwindling new management duo Adam Flanagan and Jamie Coyle can cease the opportunity to create something new at Princes Park. Attacking intent has been illustrated with the signing of Alex Wall, whio scored six in 11 games whilst on loan at the Darts in 2014, the striker spent last term with Hungerford Town. Forward, Kudus Oyenuga arrives from Chelmsford City and 29-year-old striker Delano Sam-Yorke from Maidstone United. Callum Driver returns to the Darts after three years away with Maidstone United and Welling United and winger Ben Greenhalgh joins from Flanagan’s former club Concord Rangers. Simon Mensah will provide competition in midfield having been signed from Whitehawk.

Back to top

Dulwich Hamlet

Founded: 1893 / Ground: Imperial Fields

It was only a matter of time before the Hamlet reached the National South. Over the past three season’s they made the playoffs, losing two finals in a row. The Greater London club must have feared the worst then when they ended the Isthmian Premier campaign as runners up, even with an impressive 95 points. However, at the fourth attempt Dulwich Hamlet won the playoffs beating Hendon on penalties. It’s certainly been a dramatic year for the club having been forced out of their ground, meaning the Hamlet have been playing home games at Tooting and Mitcham United’s the Imperial Fields. This season will see the club play at National South level for the very first time.

Last Season

Isthmian Premier: 2nd

F.A Cup: 2nd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 2nd Qualifying Round

County Cup: Semi-Final

League Top Scorer: Nyren Clunis (19 goals)

Average Attendance: 1381 (1st in Isthmian Premier)

The Manager – Gavin Rose

Hamlet’s longest serving manager finally earned promotion to the National South last season. The 39-year-old former midfielder had spells with Wimbledon, Charlton Athletic, Queens Park Rangers, Southend United, Bromley, Gravesend & Northfleet and Walton & Hersham amongst others during his long career. Rose runs an academy which specialises in coaching youngsters and as a manager with Beckenham Town almost won the Kent League. Under his guidance, Hamlet won the Isthmian Division One South title five years ago and the Isthmian Premier League playoffs last season. Helping Rose in the dugout will be former Dartford midfielder Junior Kadi, who was part of Dartford’s 2008 title winning team.

The Summer

Hamlet strengthened their midfield over the break with the signing of former Ebbsfleet United and Chelmsford City man Anthony Cook, the 28-year-old spent four years with the Clarets before playing for Fleet. The attacking midfielder also had spells at Bromley and was on loan at Woking last term. Byron Lawrence made the move up to the National South coming in from Leiston, the 22-year-old previously played for Billericay Town, Ipswich Town, Colchester United and Bishop’s Stortford. Hamlet have added former Colchester United defender Magnus Okuonghae and striker Jay May to the squad. Okuonghae played 215 games for Colchester United and spent two years with National League outfit Maidstone United before moving to Welling United last summer. May was also at Maidstone United where he topped scored before spells at Hythe Town and Margate, he was also part of Dartford’s Isthmian Division One North and Isthmian Premier League title winning sides, scoring 51 goals in 117 games. Rose also agreed to sign former Chelsea youngster Daniel Pappoe. Dulwich Hamlet will be without Reise Allassani who earned a move to League One Coventry City, after 17 goals in 31 appearances last season. Crowd favourites Marc Weatherstone and Kenny Beaney leave along with Nana Boakye-Yiadom to Concord Rangers and Anthony Acheampong to Welling United.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 0 / Dulwich Hamlet wins: 2 / Draws: 2

Previous Meetings

31.03.2007 Dartford 1 Billericay Town 1
19.09.2006 Dulwich Hamlet 3 Dartford 2
09.12.1996 Dulwich Hamlet 3 Dartford 1
04.12.1996 Dartford 0 Dulwich Hamlet 0

Next Meetings

Tuesday 30 October 2018 at Princes Park

Saturday 2 March 2019 at Imperial Fields

Back to top

East Thurrock United

Founded: 1969 / Ground: Rookery Hill

Unbeaten in their first ten league matches, East Thurrock United looked on course to be last season’s surprise package. When they were promoted to the National League two years ago they had carried forward their habit of scoring goals. Helped by Sam Higgins, the National South’s top talisman last term with twenty-five goals, the Rocks saw plenty of goals once more. This time they scored two less than the champions but conceded eighty-four times, the second highest in the division. As a result of their defensive frailties, the Essex club lost momentum going eight without victory after their excellent start. East Thurrock United concluded their campaign with a six-game losing streak aided by a series of injuries and suspensions.

Last Season

National South: 15th

F.A Cup: 4th Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 3rd Round

County Cup: Semi-Final

League Top Scorer: Sam Higgins (25 goals)

Average Attendance: 294 (18th in National South)

The Manager – John Coventry

East Thurrock United needed rebuilding following relegation to the Isthmian Division One in 2008. The astuteness and coaching experience of John Coventry has had a large part to play in the Rocks rise to the National South. Seven years ago, the Essex club won the Isthmian Division One North, in the division above they reached the playoffs in 2013 and three years later won the playoffs. When East Thurrock United won promotion they played an attacking brand scoring 107 times in that campaign. Coventry has now overseen two consecutive years in the National South finishing thirteenth then fifteenth.

The Summer

Former England international and Premier League full back, Paul Konchesky will take on a dual role as player and assistant first team coach. The ex-Charlton Athletic, West Ham United, Fulham and Liverpool left back has non-league experience with Billericay Town, Hardworking midfielder turned full back Danny Harris leaves Dartford after 400 appearances and 75 goals to join the Rocks. Goalkeeper, Jack Giddens moves from local rivals Billericay Town, Tom Derry comes in from Leatherhead and Ashley Miller re-joins East Thurrock United. Former Darts, James White, Max Cornhill and Lewis Smith have all departed John Coventry’s squad.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 2 / East Thurrock United wins: 3 / Draws: 1

Previous Meetings

30.04.2005 East Thurrock United 0 Dartford 1
28.08.2017 Dartford 0 East Thurrock United 1
07.01.2017 Dartford 6 East Thurrock United 1
10.09.2016 East Thurrock United 1 Dartford 1
30.04.2005 Dartford 0 East Thurrock United 3
28.08.2004 East Thurrock United 2 Dartford 1

Next Meetings

Monday 27 August 2018 at Rookery Hill

Saturday 29 December 2018 at Princes Park

Back to top

Eastbourne Borough

Founded: 1964 / Ground: Priory Lane

A new era began for the Sports last season under a new management team and they started with back to back defeats. An eight-match unbeaten run followed moving the Sussex club up the table and into the top ten. This is when Eastbourne Borough peaked and from September they spent the rest of their campaign picking up the odd victory between losing streaks. They ended the season with four straight losses looking over their shoulders until the penultimate game when they reached safety. In all fairness the Sports picked up the points against the teams that mattered, winning six out of eight against those who finished below them in the National South.

Last Season

National South: 18th

F.A Cup: 3rd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 1st Round

County Cup: Quarter-Final

League Top Scorer: Jamie Taylor (11 goals)

Average Attendance: 517 (13th in National South)

The Manager – Jamie Howell

Last summer Jamie Howell walked away from Bognor Regis Town after guiding them into the National South. The former defender made over 400 appearances for the Rocks before managing the club for seven years. His last match as boss for the Sussex club was the playoff final win over Dulwich Hamlet, two days later he rocked up at Priory Lane. In his first campaign with the Sports the club survived whilst his former side were relegated back to the Isthmian Premier League. Howell started his management career at neighbours Burgess Hill Town, where he spent a couple of years as player manager. The Sports will be hoping for a more comfortable ride this time under Howell.

The Summer

Dave Martin used to create excitement amongst the Princes Park faithful and his talent was rewarded with a move to Crystal Palace. The former Millwall winger has made his way back to non-league and will be at Priory Lane this season. Charlie Walker scored 16 goals in 67 appearances for St Albans City and he will be part of Eastbourne Borough’s team. Once of Ebbsfleet United and Chelmsford City, experience midfielder Michael West joins the clan and so does 18-year-old centre back Harry Pollard from Charlton Athletic. The Sports may miss the departures of striker Jamie Taylor as well as Kiran Khinda-John, Charlie Harris, Shaun Okojie and Gavin McCallum, who has joined Welling United. Marvin Hamilton made one appearance for Dartford a few years ago. He returns to Priory Lane after spending last term at Whitehawk. Centre back James Harran has left the club trading football for a modelling career.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 10 / Eastbourne Borough wins: 4 / Draws: 2

Previous Meetings

14.04.2018 Eastbourne Borough 0 Dartford 1
12.09.2017 Dartford 4 Eastbourne Borough 2
08.04.2017 Dartford 4 Eastbourne Borough 3
16.08.2011 Eastbourne Borough 2 Dartford 3
20.02.2016 Eastbourne Borough 1 Dartford 1
11.08.2015 Dartford 1 Eastbourne Borough 0

Next Meetings

Saturday 8 September 2018 at Princes Park

Saturday 20 April 2019 at Priory Lane

Back to top

Gloucester City

Founded: 1883 / Ground: Jubilee Stadium

Moved from the National North to the South last summer, Gloucester City found their feet in their new surroundings, but had to wait until the fifth game to secure their first victory. The Tigers didn’t fully settle though and were surprised in November when manager Tim Harris resigned after 300 games in charge. Form improved in the New Year with the Gloucestershire club suffering just two defeats in eleven leading up to the Easter period. Although the Tigers couldn’t keep the run going and their season petered out, remaining in the National South was never really in doubt. A fourteenth-place finish was very much in keeping with their previous life in the National North where mid-table was the norm.

Last Season

National South: 14th

F.A Cup: 2nd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 3rd Qualifying Round

County Cup: Final to be played 30/07/2018

League Top Scorer: Joseph Parker (12 goals)

Average Attendance: 284 (19th in National South)

The Manager – Marc Richards

Former Gloucester City defender Marc Richards returned to the club four years ago as part of the back-room staff. As a player he had three spells with the Tigers, first signing from Cirencester Town then departing for Australia to play for Manly United. Richards enjoyed a long career in non-league which also included time at Cinderford Town, Weston-super-Mare, Swindon Supermarine, Chippenham Town, Shortwood United and Evesham United. He became assistant to former boss Tim Harris and when he unexpectedly resigned in December, Richards was there to take up the manager’s position with the club two points above the drop. By the end of the campaign the Tigers survived with eleven points to spare.

The Summer

After a strong finish to the campaign, Marc Richards rewarded most of the squad with new contracts. Although he lost the services of Kieran Parselle to Chippenham Town and Robbie Cundy he has signed replacements. Jack Deaman is back with the Tigers after making 11 appearances in 2016/2017, Adam Page returns to the club after two loan appearances in 2017 and Mat Liddiard, a graduate of Gloucester City is back after a spell with Evesham United, where he scored 22 goals last season. Jake Mawford signs after impressing Marc RFichards during pre-season and Exeter City forward, Ben Seymour joins the Tigers on a three month loan.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 27 / Gloucester City wins: 12 / Draws: 10

Previous Meetings

10.04.2018 Gloucester City 0 Dartford 1
18.11.2017 Dartford 4 Gloucester City 1
07.03.1992 Gloucester City 0 Dartford 0
26.10.1991 Dartford 2 Gloucester City 0
16.03.1991 Dartford 2 Gloucester City 1
29.09.1990 Gloucester City 2 Dartford 0

Next Meetings

Tuesday 3 November 2018 at Jubilee Stadium

Saturday 9 March 2019 at Princes Park

Back to top

Hampton and Richmond Borough

Founded: 1921 / Ground: The Beveree

An incredible twenty-one game unbeaten run from the end of August to the end of January made sure the Beavers challenged for the title, until the Good Friday mud bath. A last-minute defeat against title contenders Dartford over ended all hope. The Beavers, along with champions Havant and Waterlooville lost the fewest matches last term, just six. So, dropped points from eighteen outings cost the Middlesex club dearly. Hampton and Richmond Borough earned a playoff spot, this time settled on the field, but once more fell short when they agonisingly lost the final to Braintree Town on penalties. The Beavers will start the new campaign with a new boss after Alan Dowson’s departure for Woking.

Last Season

National South: 4th

F.A Cup: 4th Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 1st Round

County Cup: Quarter-Final

League Top Scorer: Max Kretzschmar (14 goals)

Average Attendance: 590 (9th in National South)

The Manager – Gary McCann

There is common ground between the Beavers and their new boss, they both experienced playoff heartbreak last season. Hampton and Richmond Borough had been keeping tabs on the great work McCann was doing at Hendon. When former manager Alan Dowson jumped ship to take over at Woking, the appointment of his replacement was swift. McCann first joined the Greens as a player in 1997 and then became the longest serving manager at the Middlesex club, where he won an Isthmian League Cup. He consistently kept Hendon in the Isthmian Premier League finishing runners up in 2015 and third last season, losing the playoff final to Dulwich Hamlet on penalties.

The Summer

Rebuilding the squad at the Beveree began with a raid on Gary McCann’s former club Hendon. Trusting players, he already knows, the new Hampton and Richmond Borough boss has attracted the versatile Casy Maclaren, who made 358 appearances for Hendon since 2007. Daniel Uchechi has represented Nigeria at under 20 and under 23 level and experienced playing for Charlton Athletic, West Ham United, Sheffield Wednesday, Aberdeen as well as spells in Sweden and Germany, he also joins from Hendon. Also switching from Silver Jubilee Park to the Beveree is Michael Corcoran once of Oxford United, Wealdstone and Chelmsford City, Jake Eggleton, an ever present last term, right back James Hammond, 18 goal striker Zak Joseph, goalkeeper Tom Lovelock and 19-year-old defender Rian Bray. Former Billericay Town pair Oliver Sprague and Josh Mcleod-Urquhart have joined the Beavers along with Shaun Lucien who returns to the club from St Albans City and Ricky Wellard arrives from Wealdstone. Nathan Mavilla signs from Leyton Orient and has previously represented Aldershot, Cambridge City & Wealdstone and made an appearance for West Ham United in the Europa League against Astra Giurgui three years ago. Up front, Chris Dickson has been signed from Chelmsford City and brings experience to the front line. He spent five seasons playing in Cyprus, before moving to China. Dickson also has Football League pedigree, having joined Championship side Charlton Athletic in 2007 and he also has two caps for Ghana. Hampton & Richmond Borough have also completed the signing of Charlton Athletic’s Dan Bowry, on a loan deal that will run until January. One big loss will be the goals from midfield scored by Max Kretzschmar, he netted 14 times last term and joins the Beavers former boss now at Woking.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 5 / Hampton and Richmond Borough wins: 4 / Draws: 1

Previous Meetings

30.03.2018 Dartford 1 Hampton & Richmond Borough 0
02.09.2017 Hampton & Richmond Borough 2 Dartford 2
17.04.2017 Dartford 3 Hampton & Richmond Borough 1
29.08.2016 Hampton & Richmond Borough 4 Dartford 1
21.01.2012 Hampton & Richmond Borough 1 Dartford 3
20.08.2011 Dartford 2 Hampton & Richmond Borough 1

Next Meetings

Saturday 17 November 2018 at the Beveree

Saturday 23 March 2019 at Princes Park

Back to top

East Thurrock United v Dartford

Dartford will have the chance to increase their slender lead at the top of the National South on Tuesday when they visit East Thurrock United.

The Darts have just three games remaining and are just one goal ahead of second place Havant and Waterlooville. Going into the match against East Thurrock United, the Darts have put a great run together of eight wins from their last nine outings. Victory will put Dartford three points clear to put pressure on their title rivals, who will be in Hampshire senior cup action.

On the weekend Dartford recorded back to back 1-0 victories and their fourth clean sheet in five games. Danny Mills’ low diving header at the far post was enough to clinch another vital three points against Eastbourne Borough. Manager, Tony Burman spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk, he said: “I’m obviously delighted that we’ve got three points,” Burman added: “Although it was 1-0, like Gloucester the other night, we had a couple of chances to kill the game off in the second half. It didn’t happen but we still managed the game”.

Burman commented after the game and praised the fans, especially after he asked supporters to back his side after defeat at home to Poole Town, he said: “Back then, I was really disappointed with certain aspects of what was going on around the club”, he continued: “We needed to pull together because when we do, we’re excellent. That’s what we’re about and today we had fantastic support. It started from the first whistle and that’s all we were asking”, he added: “In all fairness, the supporters have reacted and I think they’ve been excellent in the games since then and they can see what the players have done”.

When Dartford met East Thurrock United in August it was the Rocks who grabbed a 1-0 win as they started their National South campaign exceeding expectations. On loan goalkeeper, Jordan Beeney could only tip Reece Harris’ free kick onto the crossbar for Sam Higgins to score the rebound, it was Dartford’s first home defeat of the campaign.

The Essex club lost on Saturday at home to county rivals Chelmsford City, Scott Fenwick scored all four goals for the Clarets as the hosts fell 4-2, Lewis Smith who once signed for the Darts but never played a match for the Darts scored for East Thurrock United. Sam Higgins, the National South’s top scorer with 26 goals scored the Rocks first of the afternoon. Currently five goals behind, Dartford striker Alfie Pavey will want to make up some ground on Higgins for the Golden Boot award.

Defeat for John Coventry’s side ended a run of consecutive wins after they had beaten Truro City and Concord Rangers. Now in thirteenth place with five games remaining, the Rocks will be aiming to finish as high up the table as possible and still could have a huge say in the title race. East Thurrock United will be taking on Havant and Waterlooville in their penultimate game.

In their ranks East Thurrock United have former Dartford favourite Lee Burns. The striker turned right back made 272 appearances for the Darts scoring 33 times. Midfielder, Max Cornhill also represented the Darts 66 times scoring nine goals. James White is also part of the East Thurrock United squad but has found appearances limited this season.

The Essex club started the campaign on a ten match unbeaten run winning six and drawing four, including the 1-0 victory at Princes Park. The Rocks went on to record eight matches without a win and since then have tasted victory just seven times in the last nineteen.

Head to Head
East Thurrock United wins: 3 / Dartford wins: 1 / Draws: 1

Current League Form

East Thurrock United (LWWLDW) Dartford (WWWWWW)
Chelmsford City H 2-4 Eastbourne Borough A 1-0
Truro City A 2-1 Gloucester City A 1-0
Concord Rangers A 4-1 Weston-super-Mare H 3-1
Chippenham Town H 0-2 Hampton & Richmond H 1-0
Poole Town H 2-2 Oxford City A 2-0
Bognor Regis Town A 2-0 Hemel Hempstead H 3-2

Previous Meetings

28.08.2017 Dartford 0 East Thurrock United 1
07.01.2016 Dartford 6 East Thurrock United 1
10.09.2016 East Thurrock United 1 Dartford 1
30.04.2005 Dartford 0 East Thurrock United 3
28.08.2004 East Thurrock United 2 Dartford 1

Stats
Dartford’s run of eight wins from nine matches the sequence set last season between 13 September 2016 and 3 December 2016.

The Darts sixth victory in a row also matches the run between 7 January 2017 and 11 February 2017. The last time Dartford won seven on the spin was in 2009 when they won the Isthmian Premier League, in that sequence the Darts ended up recording eight straight victories.

Only Dartford have scored more goals than East Thurrock United this season, the Darts have netted 76 times whilst the Rocks have scored 66, joint with Hemel Hempstead Town.

The Rocks have failed to win a home game against any of the current top seven this season (D2, L4)

On This Day
A year ago Dartford beat Hampton and Richmond Borough 3-1 at Princes Park with goals from Elliot Bradbrook, Alex Brown and Ronnie Vint. The goalscorer for the Beavers that day was Nathan Collier, now back at the Darts. That was victory was the first win on this day since 1981, a run of six games which ended in three draws and three losses, including the 5-0 reverse at home to Histon in 2004. The Darts last away triumph on 17 April was back in 1980 when they beat Fareham Town 2-1 in the Southern League Southern Division.

Dartford v East Thurrock United

Familiar faces will be returning to Princes Park on Bank Holiday Monday when the Darts host East Thurrock United.

A repeat of last season’s home fixture against the Rocks will be welcomed by Tony Burman’s men and will extend their unbeaten record. Victory will see the Darts move above their opponents and by the end of the afternoon could jump in to second place. East Thurrock United are also unbeaten, one of three teams left in the National South without defeat.

Just over seven months ago, the Darts were clinical in front of goal securing an impressive 6-1 win against East Thurrock United. Six different scorers found the net that day starting with a second minute Tom Bonner header. Alex Brown expertly hit a twenty yard volley to double the lead and by half-time the Darts were 4-1 up. Tom Murphy scored on his home debut before Tom Wraight pulled a goal back and Andy Pugh scored from close range. The second half yielded two more goals, one from Ryan Hayes and the other an Elliot Bradbrook spot kick.

The Darts will want to keep up the excellent home form in which they have dropped just two league points at Princes Park over the last nine home games. In fact, Tony Burman’s men have lost just two league home games since mid-March of last year.

At home, the season opened with a 0-0 draw against Hungerford Town, but a 2-0 victory against Concord Rangers earned the Darts their first win of the season. Lyle Della-Verde scored his first for the club seven minutes from time after Elliot Bradbrook gave the Darts a first half lead. Dartford’s last home fixture saw them rack up their biggest score since 1989 with a 7-1 win over Oxford City. Warren Mfula’s hat-trick came after goals from Richard Sho-Silva, Della-Verde, Alfie Pavey and Lee Noble.

Dartford extended their unbeaten start to the campaign with a 3-0 away win at Hemel Hempstead Town. Elliot Bradbrook netted two penalties to take his season’s tally to four in six games. Alfie Pavey scored the other, his second in as many games since his return to the club.

The Darts will see new loan signing Jordan Beeney step in between the sticks to replace Deren Ibrahim, the Gibraltar international. Beeney has been signed as cover from Charlton Athletic’s academy. Ibrahim will be represeting his country against Belgium and Bosnia in World Cup qualifiers.

East Thurrock United boss, John Coventry has five former Dartford players in his squad all could be making their return to Princes Park having featured this season. Former favourite Lee Burns, signed a year ago and made 272 appearances for Dartford scoring 33 times winning promotions, coming top scorer, winning a Player of the Year award and even turned out in goal. Max Cornhill is now back with the Rocks, the midfielder represented the Darts 66 times scoring nine goals.

Now more of a defender than a midfielder James White moved this summer joining East Thurrock United from Concord Rangers, White made 112 appearances for the Darts. The Rocks also signed Lewis Smith, who Dartford gambled on a few years ago only for the striker to move out to Australia before playing a single competitive match, he was later banned for 17 months by the F.A which ended recently. Femi Akinwande made it through the Dartford academy before Colchester United took a punt, after a successful loan spell at Rookery Hill he is now a permanent squad member.

East Thurrock United have also started this term well and their away record matches Dartford’s home one. The Essex club travelled to Whitehawk and won 3-2 with goals from Smith, Sam Higgins and Ben Marlow. They beat Poole Town by the same scoreline, this time Reece Harris and two goals from Montel Agyemang earned victory. Smith was also on hand twice in the away 2-2 draw with Chippenham Town. The Rocks have found the net with regularity so far, they also hit five at home against Braintree Town in a 5-3 victory.

Head to Head
Dartford wins: 1 / East Thurrock United wins: 2 / Draws: 1

Current League Form

East Thurrock United (DWWWDW) Dartford (WWWDDD)
Bognor Regis Town H 2-0 Hemel Hempstead A 3-0
Chippenham Town A 2-2 Oxford City H 7-1
Braintree Town H 5-3 Concord Rangers H 2-0
Poole Town A 3-2 Havant & Waterlooville A 0-0
Whitehawk A 3-2 Braintree Town A 2-2
Hampton & Richmond Borough H 1-1 Wealdstone H 0-0

Previous Meetings

07.01.2016 Dartford 6 East Thurrock United 1
10.09.2016 East Thurrock United 1 Dartford 1
30.04.2005 Dartford 0 East Thurrock United 3
28.08.2004 East Thurrock United 2 Dartford 1

Stats
Since 25 March 2016, Dartford have an exceptional home record in the National South. The Darts have won 20, drawn 5 and lost 2, scoring 64 and conceding 24.

Princes Park has hosted four August Bank Holiday matches with the Darts winning two, drawing one and losing the other. Aveley were beaten 4-0 a decade ago and three years later Dartford drew 1-1 with Ebbsfleet United. Bromley were defeated 3-1 in 2011 and Ebbsfleet United won 1-0 at Princes Park two years ago.

On This Day
Thirteen years ago in the Southern League Eastern Division, Dartford met East Thurrock United for the very first time. The likes of Tostao Kwashi, Eddie McClements and Tommy Osborne were part of the Darts squad that lost 2-1 on that day. A year later Dartford were knocked out of the F.A Cup preliminary round by Dorking. In 2006, Whyteleafe were beaten 3-1 with a goal by Brendon Cass and two from Jay May settling the score. The last time Dartford played on 28 August was seven years ago against rivals Ebbsfleet United. The first league meeting since 1992 ended in 1-1 draw, it was also the first Princes Park meeting between the two clubs.

National League South Season Preview 2017/18 – Part II

 Chippenham Town | Concord Rangers | Dartford | Eastbourne Borough | East Thurrock United

Chippenham Town

Founded: 1873 / Ground: Hardenhuish Park

A new entry into the National South, Chippenham Town are the Southern League champions and set their highest ever points tally last season, with an impressive 103, a league record. The Bluebirds spent 15 years in the Southern Premier League reaching the playoffs on four occasions and suffering heartbreak in the final three times. So when the Wiltshire club took all the glory last term, the long wait was certainly worth it for club officials and supporters.

Last Season

Southern Premier: 1st

F.A Cup: 3rd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 2nd Qualifying Round

County Cup: 2nd Round

League Top Scorer: Andrew Sandell (27 goals)

Average Attendance: 459 (8th in league / 86th in non-league)

The Manager – Mark Collier

Responsible for guiding Chippenham Town to thee highest level they have ever played, Collier gained experience at Swindon Supermarine. He led the Marine to the F.A Cup second round seven years ago and three months later left the club. Since then Collier has been learning his coaching trade at Wootton Bassett and Abingdon United. The current Bluebirds boss has a championship winning side to work with and hopes his team can repay the trust he is giving the players.

The Summer

Not too much action in the transfer marker and that is because Collier has retained 16 players believing his squad will be competitive. The three signings he has made, Dean Evans, Mark Cooper and Jason Matthews have all come from Weymouth. Most importantly the Bluebirds have kept hold of Andrew Sandell, the Southern Premier League top scorer for the last two season’s. The striker used to play for Bristol Rovers and Newport County. On loan for the season, Chelsea teenager Jared Thompson could gain experience between the sticks. Jake Andrews has been added on a two month loan from Bristol City. Attacking midfielder, Scott Donnelly will provide more experience having played for numerous clubs at Football League and National South level.

Next Meetings

Saturday 9 September 2017 at Princes Park

Saturday 20 January 2018 at Hardenhuish Park

Back to top

Concord Rangers

Founded: 1967 / Ground: Thames Road

A well run club who have moved up the divisions from the Essex League in a short space of time. Despite small crowds the Beachboys continue to hold their own in the National South and will now participate at this level for a fourth consecutive year. Last term was their lowest finish since promotion to the National South as the Essex club started poorly, but a decent recovery lifted them away from the drop zone to safety.

Last Season

National South: 18th

F.A Cup: 3rd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 3rd Qualifying Round

County Cup: 3rd Round

League Top Scorer: Steve Cawley (18 goals)

Average Attendance: 287 (22nd in league / 140th in non-league)

The Manager – Adam Flanagan

Former Dartford defender Adam Flanagan impressed in his first two season’s as Concord Rangers manager. He had replaced Danny Cowley who guided the Beachboys up the non league pyramid so had big shoes to fill. The 38 year old previously managed Brentwood Town where he won promotion to the Isthmian Premier League via the playoffs. As a player he captained the Dartford side who clinched the Isthmian Premier League title five years ago, making a total of 145 appearances for the Darts and scoring 14 goals.

The Summer

Steve Cawley has been the club’s top scorer regularly and will get help from Jordan Cox, who signed from National South champions Maidenhead United. Lewis Taafe returns to Thames Road and Khale Da Costa will be a Beachboy too. Flanagan has returned to a former club in Maldon and Tiptree to sign up Jordan Sanderson and Billy Roast. From Southend United, Jason Williams joins Concord Rangers and Jordan Brown from Welling United. Last season their were a fair few former Dartford players around Thames Road, now that has been cut down with the departures of James White and Jordan Chiedozie.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 3 / Concord Rangers wins: 1 / Draws: 1

Previous Meetings

11.03.2017 Concord Rangers 1 Dartford 1
24.09.2016 Dartford 2 Concord Rangers 1
27.02.2016 Dartford 1 Concord Rangers 2
18.08.2015 Concord Rangers 2 Dartford 3
27.01.2009 Concord Rangers 1 Dartford 3

Next Meetings

Tuesday 15 August 2017 at Princes Park

Saturday 6 January 2018 at Thames Road

Back to top

Dartford

Founded: 1888 / Ground: Princes Park

After a season of consolidation, the Darts went a step further by reaching the playoffs losing out to their season’s nemesis Chelmsford City in the semi final. Considering the budget available to the top two Maidenhead United and local rivals Ebbsfleet United, Dartford finished the best of the rest pipping the Clarets on the final day. Once again, captain Elliot Bradbrook led by example in midfield top scoring, but a small, solid and flexible squad had the togetherness to almost challenge for the title in February. However the strength of the top two left the Darts behind in a respectable third place.

Last Season

National South: 3rd

F.A Cup: 1st Round

F.A Trophy: 2nd Round

County Cup: 2nd Round

League Top Scorer: Elliot Bradbrook (14 goals)

Average Attendance: 998 (3rd in league / 37th in non-league)

The Manager – Tony Burman

It seemed like Tony Burman rediscovered the Dartford spirit of old last season. Overseeing title winning sides in the Isthmian Leagues and a triumphant National South playoff team, Burman guided the Darts to eighth in the National League back in 2014/15. From then on Dartford spiralled downwards with a reprieve then relegation leaving supporters in the doldrums. Consolidation has now been followed by optimism again and with Burman’s experience, the Darts are eyeing up promotion again.

The Summer

The nucleus of last season were tied down early doors largely due to the team spirit Burman has once again created. The ‘core’ of Elliot Bradbrook, Ryan Hayes, Danny Harris and Lee Noble have stayed on. The hole left by goal scoring winger Luke Wanadio to Bromley has been filled by Lyle Della Verde from Concord Rangers. Full back, Tom Wynter who moved down a division to relegated Margate has been replaced by Mark Onyemah from Thurrock, who played 24 times whilst on loan at Princes Park from Luton Town back in 2015/16. Scorer of 44 goals last term for AFC Croydon Athletic in the Southern Counties East League, Warren Mfula impressed enough for Burman to take a gamble.

Back to top

Eastbourne Borough

Founded: 1964 / Ground: Priory Lane

It’s time for Eastbourne Borough to show some progression after Tommy Widdrington’s five year tenure. The Sports finished between 10th and 17th during Widdrington’s spell in charge and are only on their fifth manager in 34 years. Stability is a word Eastbourne Borough are used to but the new boss wants more. Last term the Sussex club ended in a predictable mid-table spot and will continue life in the National South once more.

Last Season

National South: 11th

F.A Cup: 1st Round

F.A Trophy: 3rd Qualifying Round

County Cup: Semi Final

League Top Scorer: Elliot Romain (20 goals)

Average Attendance: 541 (10th in league / 67th in non-league)

The Manager – Jamie Howell

After ten years as a player at Bognor Regis Town and seven years as a manager, Howell shocked the Rocks with his switch to Sussex rivals Eastbourne Borough. The 40 year old played over 400 games for last season’s Isthmian Premier playoff winners taking his former side to their highest ever level. Howell now wants to take Eastbourne Borough back to the National League by playing attractive football and in the long term have a team of local players from the county.

The Summer

Sergio Torres is the main signing this summer joining the Sports from Whitehawk. The 35 year old Argentinian made his name at Wycombe Wanderers and Peterborough before being part of Crawley Town’s rise. Jamie Howell, also went back to a former club to get Leon Redwood to sign from Burgess Hill Town. Replacing Josh Hare at full back will be ex Wothing player Will Hendon and Matt Drage comes in from Dulwich Hamlet. Yemi Odubade returns to the Sports after spells with Oxford United and Maidstone United.

Head To Head

Dartford wins: 8 / Eastbourne Borough wins: 4 / Draws: 2

Previous Meetings

08.04.2017 Dartford 4 Eastbourne Borough 3
16.08.2011 Eastbourne Borough 2 Dartford 3
20.02.2016 Eastbourne Borough 1 Dartford 1
11.08.2015 Dartford 1 Eastbourne Borough 0
03.04.2012 Eastbourne Borough 0 Dartford 1
29.11.2011 Dartford 2 Eastbourne Borough 1

Next Meetings

Tuesday 12 September 2017 at Princes Park

Saturday 14 April 2018 at Priory Lane

Back to top

East Thurrock United

Founded: 1969 / Ground: Rookery Hill

The Rocks had a fine season last time out consolidating in the National South in their first ever campaign at this level. The Essex club will be one of four representing the county and they have their fair share of former Darts in their squad. A similar season to last term will be the aim for the club and success will be signs of improvement at this level.

Last Season

National South: 13th

F.A Cup: 2nd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: Second Round

County Cup: Runners up

League Top Scorer: Tom Wraight (19 goals)

Average Attendance: 305 (19th in league / 129th in non-league)

The Manager – John Coventry

East Thurrock United needed rebuilding following relegation to the Isthmian Division One in 2008. The astuteness and coaching experience of John Coventry has had a large part to play in the Rocks rise to the National South. Four years ago, the Essex club won the playoffs to reach the Isthmian Premier League. Last term provided consolidation after winning promotion via the Isthmian Premier playoffs.

The Summer

Three former Dartford players join East Thurrock United and will team up with ex Dart Lee Burns, who was signed a year ago. Max Cornhill left Chelmsford City and James White moved on from Concord Rangers. The Rocks have also signed Lewis Smith, who Dartford gambled on a few years ago only for the striker to move out to Australia shortly after agreeing to sign for the Darts, he was later banned for 17 months by the F.A which ends next month. George Allen also joins East Thurrock United from fellow Essex side Canvey Island. Leaving Rookery Hill this summer wsa top scorer Tom Wraight who secured a move to Maidstone United.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 1 / East Thurrock United wins: 2 / Draws: 1

Previous Meetings

07.01.2016 Dartford 6 East Thurrock United 1
10.09.2016 East Thurrock United 1 Dartford 1
30.04.2005 Dartford 0 East Thurrock United 3
28.08.2004 East Thurrock United 2 Dartford 1

Next Meetings

Monday 28 August 2017 at Princes Park

Monday 2 Monday 2018 at Rookery Hill

Back to top

Dartford v East Thurrock United

Dartford will look to bounce back from their New Year’s Day defeat with their first ever win over East Thurrock United on the weekend.

The Darts host this season’s draw specialists after narrowly losing away to rivals Ebbsfleet United. The result left Dartford outside of the playoff spots but they remain in a strong position with a game in hand. Despite slipping out of the top five, the Darts did manage to beat their rivals on Boxing Day to take three points out of six over the festive period.

East Thurrock United have been a tough side to crack this term. In their first ever campaign in the National South, the Essex club have only been beaten four times, only league leaders Maidenhead United and Chelmsford City have lost fewer. The Rocks have drawn 12 of their 23 games this season, including their last two against Essex rivals Concord Rangers.

So it’s hardly surprising that when Dartford last faced John Coventry’s side it ended all square back in September. Ben Marlow scored for East Thurrock United from a spot kick, and when Tom Bonner conceded his second penalty of the afternoon, the Rocks should have gone two up. This time Deren Ibrahim made a fine save to deny Marlow giving the Darts a lift. Fortunately for Tony Burman’s side Ryan Hayes equalised from a cross to salvage a point.

Although Dartford have been beaten twice in three league games, they have only lost once at Princes Park in the National South. Tom Wynter will serve the final game of his suspension after his red card at Maidenhead United. New signing Tom Murphy managed a substitute appearance on New Year’s Day as he looks to settle in with the squad.

Potentially returning to Princes Park for the first time since leaving the Darts in the summer, Lee Burns could face his former team mates. Burns spent seven seasons with Dartford making 272 appearances scoring 33 times. He was pivotal in Dartford’s Isthmian Premier League title campaign as a striker when he top scored with 23 goals and won Player of the Year..

East Thurrock United are two places below Dartford and eight points behind. The Rocks are the sixth highest scorers this term and were the top scorers with 107 goals in last season’s Isthmian Premier League. John Coventry has masterminded the club’s rise to the National South, the highest level the club as ever played.

Head to Head
Dartford wins: 0 / East Thurrock United wins: 2 / Draws: 1

Current League Form
Dartford (LWLWWW)
Lost 0-1 v Ebbsfleet United (A)
Won 2-1 v Ebbsfleet United (H)
Lost 0-5 v Maidenhead United (A)
Won 2-1 v Poole Town (H)
Won 3-0 v Bishop’s Stortford (A)
Won 2-0 v Hemel Hempstead Town (H)

East Thurrock United (DDWLDW)
Drew 1-1 v Concord Rangers (H)
Drew 1-1 v Concord Rangers (A)
Won 5-1 v Truro City (H)
Lost 0-1 v Wealdstone (A)
Drew 1-1 v St Albans City (h)
Won 3-2 v Whitehawk (A)

Previous Meetings
East Thurrock United 1 Dartford 1 (10/09/2016 – National South)
Dartford 0 East Thurrock United 3 (30/04/2005 – Southern League Division One East)
East Thurrock United 2 Dartford 1 (38/08/2004 – Southern League Division One East)

On This Day
Dartford seem to recover well from all the New Year festivities, the Darts have won seven of their last eight matches on 7 January. The last victory came five years ago at Havant and Waterlooville with Elliot Bradbrook and Danny Harris both netting a brace. Arlesley Town are the side to take points off the Darts on 7 January in the last 56 years, the last triumphant opponents were Worcester City in 1961. In the Southern Premier League, Dartford beat Alvechurch (1989) and Hastings United (1984) both 2-1 and Grantham 4-0 in 1978. Ashford United were thrashed 5-0 in the 1971 Kent Floodligh Cup fixture, Charlton Athletic defeated 2-0 in a 1969 friendly and in 1967, Merthyr Tydfil were beaten 4-1 in the Southern League First Division.

East Thurrock United v Dartford

Dartford will make the short trip across the River Thames when they visit East Thurrock United this weekend. 

Determined to put a run together, the Darts responded well to the 4-1 defeat at Hampton and Richmond Borough over the Bank Holiday period. Dartford held league leaders Maidenhead United to a goalless draw then went on to beat local rivals Welling United 2-1.

Tuesday night’s grafted victory over the Wings lifted Dartford up the National South table. Although Elliot Bradbrook missed a penalty which Alex Brown benefited from its rebound, the captain notched the winner from Ryan Hayes’ excellent cross. The Darts did have their lead cancelled out earlier when Adam Coombes scored a superb free-kick.

Manager, Tony Burman is pleased with the points return since the Bank Holiday set back but feels there is room for improvement, he told www.kentonline.co.uk: “We’re playing games in third gear and not getting out of that gear. It could be because the guys who have been injured are coming back and doing another pre-season”, he continued: “It’s frustrating again because I feel we can do better. We don’t want little spurts of good play; we want to be more consistent”.

One of those looking for fitness is Bradbrook, he said: “I’m playing catch-up at the moment. I’m two or three weeks behind the rest of the lads who have got some games in”. Bradbrook scored on the opening day and in the same game he injured his ankle, Tuesday’s match winner still admits to struggling for full fitness, he added: “I was blowing a bit, I felt tight and sore at half-time after playing the whole game on Saturday. It takes it out of you. You can’t be making all those runs when you’re not as fit as you can be, but luckily I got in there when it mattered”.

As well as Bradbrook, the injury list has been a problem for the Dartford squad. Lee Noble has suffered with a groin issue, Keaton Wood failed a fitness test and Ronnie Vint still has his broken wrist in a cast. Striker’s Andy Pugh and Duane Ofori-Acheampong also had time out and as a result are still trying to strike up a decent partnership up front.

One point and one place below the Darts, East Thurrock United have won three, drew three and lost three. On Tuesday night they were beaten 2-1 by Margate at Hartsdown Park. Michael Clark equalised for the Rocks after the Essex club conceded an own goal in the first half, but Margate’s Daniel Akindayini but the Kent club back in front.

John Coventry guided the Rocks to promotion last term wining the Isthmian Premier League playoffs. In that campaign they scored the most in the division and already this season they have showed some signs of attacking intent. East Thurrock United notched five against Gosport Borough three weeks ago and six away to Truro City last weekend. The Rocks sit third in the goal scoring charts behind Hampton and Richmond Borough who they beat last month.

The first competitive meeting between Dartford and East Thurrock United in over ten years could also be the first time the Darts reunite with former favourite Lee Burns, who missed the Rocks loss at Margate through injury. The versatile player started his Dartford career as striker scoring 23 goals during the Isthmian Premier winning campaign. Adding a further promotion, Burns went on to play over 450 times for the club filling in at right back, midfield and even in goal before leaving Princes Park for Rookery Hill this summer.

Dartford have only ever faced East Thurrock United twice in competitive matches and lost them both. Twelve years ago, the Rocks won 2-1 at home and eight months later they completed the double with a 3-1 victory.

Head to Head

East Thurrock United wins 2 / Dartford wins: 0 / Draws: 0

Current League Form (last six games)

Dartford (WDLWWD)

Won 2-1 v Welling United (H)

Drew 0-0 v Maidenhead United (H)

Lost 1-4 v Hampton and Richmond Borough (A)

Won 2-0 v Hungerford Town (H)

Won 2-1 v Weston-super-Mare (A)

Drew 0-0 v Gosport Borough (H)

East Thurrock United (LWDLWD)

Lost 1-2 v Margate (A)

Won 6-0 v Truro City (A)

Drew 1-1 v Eastbourne Borough (H)

Lost 1-2 v Bath City (A)

Won 5-1 v Gosport Borough (H)

Drew 1-1 v Welling United (H)

Previous Meetings

Dartford 0 East Thurrock United 3 (30/04/2005)

East Thurrock United 2 Dartford 1 (28/08/2004)

Stats

The club with the second highest average attendance plays the club with the second lowest this weekend. Dartford’s average from their five home games is 966 compared to East Thurrock United’s 259.

Dartford have lost the lead on five occasions this season and have only fallen behind in their two defeats.

The Rocks top scorer Tom Wraight has only scored in two games, he netted four against Truro City and one against Eastbourne Borough.

Out of the current National South clubs, only Hampton and Richmond Borough (129) have scored more than East Thurrock United (125) since the start of last season.

On This Day

In the three matches since reforming, 19 goals have been scored in just three games on 10 September. Dartford thrashed Cray Wanderers 6-1 in 1994 but left it until the last 23 minutes. After going a goal down, Micky Collins scored four completing a hat-trick in just 16 minutes. Eight years later it was Dartford’s turn to concede six against Chatham Town, the Darts did manage three goals of their own but were well beaten. The most recent fixture came five years ago when the Darts beat Eastleigh 3-0 in a rare victory against the Hampshire club, Charlie Sheringham scored a brace.

National League South Season Preview 2016/2017 (D-G)

 Dartford | Eastbourne Borough | East Thurrock United | Ebbsfleet United | Gosport Borough

Dartford

Founded: 1888 / Ground: Princes Park

A National League reprieve followed by relegation meant the Darts were hoping for at least a playoff spot. Dartford’s return to the National South after a three year absence started inconsistently. A three match losing streak and early cup exits put pressure on the club until an eleven game unbeaten run put Dartford in with a shout of a top five finish. Every time their goal edged closer they just seemed to be unable to get over that dotted line. On the final day the Kent Senior Cup winners still had a long shot but it was too much to ask so they settled for stability.

DartfordLast Season

National South: 8th

F.A Cup: 2nd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 3rd Qualifying Round

County Cup: Winners

League Top Scorer: Elliot Bradbrook (17 goals)

The Manager – Tony Burman

There is no questioning Tony Burman’s loyalty to the club and over the last three season’s there has been pockets of pressure. The 58 year old has won three promotions and two Kent Senior Cups in his current spell with the Darts and he’s won promotion from the Kent League to the Southern League as well as the Kent Senior Trophy in previous spells. The only blemish is two back to back bottom three finishes in the National League, however he was the man to take Dartford up to the top non-league division and reach eighth place. Burman has enjoyed longevity as manager and is also the club’s all time top goalscorer.

Back to top

Eastbourne Borough

Founded: 1964 / Ground: Priory Lane

A fifth season in the National South turned out to be unpredictable for the Sports. Their opening two games ended in defeat but they bounced back with four consecutive victories and that was as good as it got. In the end the Sussex club finish just three points above the relegation zone. The one positive was that the Sports had a decent goal difference for a side in the lower third of the table so never really looked threatened. Eastbourne Borough on their day were capable of big scores like the 5-1 win over Basingstoke Town or the 5-2 victory over Bath City. They could also leak goals with back to back 4-4 and 3-3 draws in February. They managed to beat teams around them but took just three points away from home against those in the top ten.

ebfcLast Season

National South: 17th

F.A Cup: 4th Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 2nd Round

County Cup: Winners

League Top Scorer: Nathaniel Pinney (18 goals)

The Manager – Tommy Widdrington

The former midfielder can draw upon his successful playing career in which he achieved four promotions and two Football League Trophy triumphs. Since February 2012, Tommy Widdrington has stabilised Eastbourne Borough who had just fallen out of the National League the campaign before his appointment. Last season was his lowest finish at the Sports in a full season at the club having pushed for a top ten spot in the previous three years. Widdrington did however win some silverware for the club when they triumphed in the Sussex Senior Cup beating Worthing in the final.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 6 / Eastbourne Borough wins: 4 / Draws: 2

Previous Meetings

20.02.2016 Eastbourne Borough 1 Dartford 1
11.08.2015 Dartford 1 Eastbourne Borough 0
03.04.2012 Eastbourne Borough 0 Dartford 1
29.11.2011 Dartford 2 Eastbourne Borough 1
26.11.2011 Eastbourne Borough 0 Dartford 0
16.08.2011 Dartford 2 Eastbourne Borough 1

Next Meetings

Saturday 5 November 2016 at Priory Lane

Sunday 8 April 2017 at Princes Park

Back to top

East Thurrock United

Founded: 1969 / Ground: Rookery Hill

The Rocks set a new club record last season with their highest ever league finish. East Thurrock United were unlucky not to finish in the top two after amassing 91 points, the most by a third place club in the Isthmian Premier since the reforming of the non league pyramid. The Essex club topped the table in February but the excellent form of champions Hampton and Richmond as well as Bognor Regis Town prevented them from grabbing the title. East Thurrock United outscored anyone in the Isthmian Premier with an impressive 107 goals; they scored four or more times on an incredible 11 occasions.

Last SeasonETUFC

Isthmian Premier: 3rd

F.A Cup: 3rd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 1st Round

County Cup: 4th Round

League Top Scorer: Sam Higgins (38 goals)

The Manager – John Coventry

East Thurrock United needed rebuilding following relegation to the Isthmian Division One in 2008. The astuteness and coaching experience of John Coventry has had a large part to play in the Rocks rise to the National South. Three years ago, the Essex club won the playoffs to reach the Isthmian Premier League. Last term a second playoff triumph has led them to their highest level of football. Coventry builds his squad around togetherness and is often on the lookout for discovering young players, his background with coaching a district youth side helps in this area. 

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 0 / East Thurrock United wins: 2 / Draws: 0

Previous Meetings

30.04.2005 Dartford 0 East Thurrock United 3
28.08.2004 East Thurrock United 2 Dartford 1

Next Meetings

Saturday 10 September 2016 at Rookery Hill

Saturday 7 January 2017 at Princes Park

Back to top

Ebbsfleet United

Founded: 1946 / Ground: Stonebridge Road

Money doesn’t always guarantee success and that proved the case for runners up Ebbsfleet United last term. The Kent side led the National South for a total of 34 matchdays, dropped just two points in their opening 11 fixtures and had quality and numbers in their squad. Backed by KEH Sports Limited, the Fleet suffered their first away defeat on Good Friday, drew with local rivals Dartford on Easter Monday then lost the important clash with champions Sutton United in their penultimate game, handing the title to the U’s. Any other campaign and it would have been a success but since the turn of the year wins turned into draws and slowly their lead was eaten away. The last straw came in the penalty shoot out playoff final defeat to Kent rivals Maidstone United. Now the Fleet will aim for the title again. 

EUFClogoLast Season

National South: 2nd

F.A Cup: 2nd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: Quarter Final

County Cup: Semi-final

League Top Scorer: Matthew Godden (26 goals)

The Manager – Daryl McMahon

When your first managerial job includes a big budget, a large squad and your team being branded as favourites then that is a lot of pressure to take. Daryl McMahon completed his first full season in charge last term and it ended in disappointment, normally a second place finish in your debut campaign would be seen as a success. Given another chance through the playoffs the Fleet lost by the narrowest of margins in a penalty shootout. McMahon has kept hold of his job so must have impressed the owners and will need to go one better this season with a trimmer squad.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 116 / Ebbsfleet United wins: 108 / Draws 91

Previous Meetings

28.03.2016 Ebbsfleet United 1 Dartford 1
31.08.2015 Dartford 0 Ebbsfleet United 1
29.10.2013 Dartford 1 Ebbsfleet United 0
26.10.2013 Ebbsfleet United 1 Dartford 1
01.01.2013 Ebbsfleet United 2 Dartford 2
26.12.2012 Dartford 3 Ebbsfleet United 1

Next Meetings

Monday 26 December 2016 at Princes Park

Sunday 1 January 2017 at Stonebridge Road

Back to top

Gosport Borough

Founded: 1944 / Ground: Privett Park

If the season ended mid February then the Borough would have been delighted with what they achieved. Up to that moment in time the Hampshire club were fourth in the league spurred on by the goals supplied by Justin Bennett. Unbeaten after their first eight fixtures gave the club solid foundations to build on and despite slight wobbles in September and October, Gosport Borough regained their form with just two defeats in twelve. Then the tables turned, the Borough lost ten of their final fifteen league matches picking up just two more victories. The end of season slide included 6-1 and 5-2 defeats to Chelmsford City and relegated Hayes and Yeading United respectively.

Gosport_BoroughLast Season

National South: 9th

F.A Cup: 3rd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 3rd Qualifying Round

County Cup: 2nd Round

League Top Scorer: Justin Bennett (23 goals)

The Manager – Alex Pike

Over ten years at the helm as manager of Gosport Borough, Alex Pike has had plenty of success during his managerial career. He guided Boro to the Wessex League title, won two promotions through the Southern League via the playoffs, reached the F.A Trophy final and claimed the Hampshire Senior Cup. With all that success behind him Pike is now being tested in the National South and it hasn’t been simple. Going well until the New Year by leading the club to the playoff places, financial problems threw a spanner in the works and left Pike questioning whether he could continue. Luckily for Gosport Borough he agreed to remain at Privett Park for the season ahead. 

Head To Head

Dartford wins: 10 / Gosport Borough wins: 5 / Draws: 3

Previous Meetings

23.02.2016 Gosport Borough 1 Dartford 3
22.08.2015 Dartford 2 Gosport Borough 3
24.10.1989 Gosport Borough 0 Dartford 1
22.08.1989 Dartford 5 Gosport Borough 1
04.04.1989 Dartford 4 Gosport Borough 2
04.03.1989 Gosport Borough 1 Dartford 2

Next Meetings

Tuesday 16 August 2016 at Princes Park

Saturday 11 February 2017 at Privett Park

Back to top