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Ebbsfleet United v Dartford

Dartford could complete their first league double over rivals Ebbsfleet United on New Year’s Day in almost 38 years.

The Darts secured a 2-1 victory on Boxing Day with former Fleet defender Tom Bonner scoring against his old side. After a goalless first half, it wasn’t long before the deadlock was broken two minutes after the interval. Bonner, with space in the Fleet box headed a corner into the net to record his first goal since returning to Dartford.

On 61 minutes, Duane Ofori-Acheampong made the most of a long ball and the hesitating Dave Winfield to finely finish past Nathan Ashmore for 2-0. Ebbsfleet United were offered a route back into the game when Anthony Cook’s well struck shot beat Deren Ibrahim.

A strong defensive display when required, particularly from Ronnie Vint, ensured the Darts held on for the win to go level on points with their local rivals and move into third place.

Darts boss, Tony Burman believed the midfield was where the match was won, he spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk and said: “We won the battle in the midfield area. We played against some really good players and a good team as they are going to be up there”. Pleased with the character of the squad, especially after the 5-0 drubbing at league leaders Maidenhead United, Burman added: “The response we got from losing at Maidenhead is why I think we’ve got a good group together”.

Burman will still be unable to select the suspended Tom Wynter, but will have new signing Tom Murphy available. The former Maidstone United forward played 20 times for the Stones this season after his move from Dover Athletic in the summer. Since November though, the 24 year old has been on loan at Eastbourne Borough. Meanwhile, Ellis Brown has left the club to seek first team opportunities with Thamesmead Town.

Ebbsfleet United boss, Daryl McMahon is relishing the challenge on New Year’s Day hoping to upset the Dartford faithful, he told www.kentonline.co.uk: “Obviously, we’ll be looking for revenge, there’s no doubt about that. We’re not happy with how we played on Boxing Day. We’re looking forward to the home game”, he added: “We start with a clean sheet and go again. We saw in the last 20 minutes (enough) from us, when we were on the front foot and taking the game to them”. Ebbsfleet United’s defeat leaves them 10 points behind league leaders Maidenhead United in second place.

Last term at Stonebridge Road, Ryan Hayes grabbed a goal to remember smashing home an equaliser early in the second half. His strike cancelled out Matthew Godden’s opener when the former Dart scored at the near post. The Darts have to go back to the double win over then called Gravesend and Northfleet for their last league victory at Stonebridge Road in 1979.

Head to Head
Ebbsfleet United wins: 108 / Dartford wins: 117 / Draws: 91

Current League Form
Dartford (WLWWWL)
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)
Lost 0-2 v St Albans City (H)

Ebbsfleet United (LWWLWW)
Lost 1-2 v Dartford (A)
Won 2-0 v Gosport Borough (H)
Won 3-1 v Oxford City (A)
Lost 2-3 v Maidenhead United (H)
Won 2-1 v Welling United (A)
Won 4-2 v Truro City (H)

Previous Six Meetings
Dartford 2 Ebbsfleet United 1 (26/12/2016 – National South)
Ebbsfleet United 1 Dartford 1 (28/03/2016 – National South)
Dartford 0 Ebbsfleet United 1 (31/08/2015 – National South)
Dartford 1 Ebbsfleet United 0 (29/10/2013 – F.A Cup Replay)
Ebbsfleet United 1 Dartford 1 (26/10/2013 – F.A Cup)
Ebbsfleet United 2 Dartford 2 (01/01/2013 – National League)

Stats
On Boxing Day, Dartford recorded their first league win of the campaign against a team in the current top six

The Darts have now won 6 out of 8 Kent derbies this season in all competitions this term. Only a draw versus Dover Athletic in the F.A Trophy and a Kent Senior Cup penalty shoot out  defeat to Welling United, have prevented Dartford from a perfect record.

Ebbsfleet United are eight league games unbeaten against Dartford at Stonebridge Road, winning three and drawing five with the last three ending all square. In all competitions the run stretches over ten meetings.

Dartford’s last win away to the Fleet was in 1989, the Darts won 2-0 in the Kent Senior Cup first round.

The Boxing Day crowd of 2404 was the highest in the National South this season and puts Dartford on top of the attendance table with an average of 1045. Ebbsfleet United are second with an average of 1006.

On This Day
The last meeting with Ebbsfleet United on New Year’s Day ended 2-2 just three years ago. The Fleet came from two down to draw level with a dramatic last minute leveller. Jon Wallis and Harry Crawford gave the Darts the advantage but a Nathan Elder double made sure the points were shared. In a more memorable fixture, Dartford thrashed Gravesend and Northfleet 5-0 in 1992 after a scoreless first half. The Darts are without a New Year’s Day win in five with their last a comprehensive 5-2 victory over Sittingbourne 15 years ago in the Southern League Division One East. Since then they have lost four out of five, with the draw at Ebbsfleet United the only point picked up.

Dartford v Ebbsfleet United

Dartford will scrapping for points on Boxing Day against their local rivals Ebbsfleet United to keep in contention of the playoff places.

In a tough December, the Darts know that a win against the Fleet will be the perfect recipe for festive cheer. Often the highlight of the season’s fixture list, Dartford host Ebbsfleet United before the return fixture on New Year’s Day.

After a heavy defeat at table toppers Maidenhead United, Tony Burman’s side will have the opportunity to bounce back and move level on points with their opponents. Dartford were victims of a superb solo performance last weekend by the National South’s top goalscorer, Dave Tarpey who netted four for the Magpies in their 5-0 drubbing of the Darts.

The set back was only the fourth league defeat for Burman’s team this season and third against a top four side. If Dartford are to show they have playoff credentials then positive results against the teams around them need improving. Despite the reverse, the Darts have been in decent form winning eight of their last ten.

Last season, the Fleet won bragging rights as the rivals met after a two year absence. At Princes Park, Ebbsfleet United won 1-0 when Jordan Parkes scored the winner from close range. Dartford pushed for an equaliser but were unable to break down their opponents even after Dean Rance was sent off.

Tom Bonner returns from his suspension but in his place Tom Wynter will be missing. Wynter was red carded in the 5-0 defeat to Maidenhead United and will serve a three match ban.

Ebbsfleet United, amongst the favourites to return to the National League fell short last term, finishing runners up then losing the playoff final. This time out they are back in second spot but rather than setting the pace like twelve months ago, they are playing catch up.

The Fleet started slowly by their standard with a run of four consecutive draws in August, leaving Daryl McMahon’s side in tenth. Since then they have taken an impressive 28 points from the last 33 available, with the last three collected in a 2-0 victory over Gosport Borough. McMahon commented told www.kentonline.co.uk: “We’ve evolved from day one to now and hopefully it continues and we keep on getting better,” he said. “Barring the start of the season, our form from September 5 to now, we’ve only lost one game, drawn two and won the rest in the league. So we’ve been in good form for a couple of months and we’re ticking along nicely”.

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

Current League Form
Dartford (LWWWLW)
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)
Lost 0-2 v St Albans City (H)
Won 1-0 v Oxford City (H)

Ebbsfleet United (WWLWWW)
Won 2-0 v Gosport Borough (H)
Won 3-1 v Oxford City (A)
Lost 2-3 v Maidenhead United (H)
Won 2-1 v Welling United (A)
Won 4-2 v Truro City (H)
Won 1-0 v Bath City (H)

Previous Six Meetings
Ebbsfleet United 1 Dartford 1 (28/03/2016 – National South)
Dartford 0 Ebbsfleet United 1 (31/08/2015 – National South)
Dartford 1 Ebbsfleet United 0 (29/10/2013 – F.A Cup Replay)
Ebbsfleet United 1 Dartford 1 (26/10/2013 – F.A Cup)
Ebbsfleet United 2 Dartford 2 (01/01/2013 – National League)
Dartford 3 Ebbsfleet United 1 (26/12/2012 – National League)

Stats
Dartford have picked up one point from 12 against teams above them in the National South. Last term they managed 13 points from 48 versus those that finished above them.

Despite conceding five on Saturday, the Darts still have the third best defensive record conceding 20. Ebbsfleet United (17) are second behind Maidenhead United (13).

Last season saw the Fleet win their first league game in Dartford since 1983. The Darts won the last six games at Watling Street against Gravesend and Northfleet before reforming, scoring 23 and conceding just once.

On This Day
Since reforming Dartford have won five, drawn three and lost six on Boxing Day. The most notable victory was the 6-1 home win against Canvey Island in 2007. Steve Norman, Ryan Hayes, Brendon Cass, Jay May, Eddie McClements and Jamie Coyle all scored for the Darts that day, in the season they clinched the Isthmian Division One North title. Only once has Dartford played Ebbsfleet United on St Stephen’s Day and that was four years ago at Princes Park. Dartford claimed the local bragging rights with Harry Crawford netting a brace and Elliot Bradbrook scoring the other. Before then, the Fleet were known as Gravesend and Northfleet and the previous fixture 23 years earlier saw Peter Taylor’s Dartford win 5-0 at Watling Street. Last season’s outing on 26 December ended with the Darts beating their next F.A Trophy opponents, Chelmsford City 1-0 thanks to an Andy Pugh winner.

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.

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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

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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

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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

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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

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Ebbsfleet United v Dartford

Dartford could have a say in the National South title race on Easter Monday, when they take on league leaders and local rivals Ebbsfleet United.

The Darts are trying to keep pace with the top five after a poor run ended on Good Friday. A first league away win against their opponents in 37 years will only help their cause.

The Fleet are nervously looking over their shoulders and hope to return to the National League after a three year absence.

A frustrating sequence of results left Dartford falling behind the playoff places. Tony Burman’s side lost four in a row and picked up just one point from 18 until the visit of Bishop’s Stortford. Finally, the Darts got back to winning ways with a 3-1 home win.

Danny Harris scored against his former club with a low drive after just six minutes to settle some nerves. The visitors were level just under ten minutes later as Ronnie Vint headed into his own net. Loanee, Keaton Wood put Dartford back in front midway through the first half, scoring his first for the club. Tom Bradbrook sealed the match moments after having a goal ruled out, the striker took his tally to 13 in all competitions for the season.

Dartford make the short journey to Stonebridge Road on the back of three straight away defeats, whilst Ebbsfleet United are five unbeaten at home.

The Darts will have to make do without captain Elliot Bradbrook who serves the last game of his suspension. Lee Burns made his first start since December but failed to finish the match against Bishop’s Stortford. Andy Pugh has been dealing with a groin injury, Callum McNaughton has a fractured metatarsal and Mark Onyemah’s loan spell has ended. Nathan Ferguson, who signed from Burton Albion will be in contention to make his second start and former Ebbsfleet United defender Paul Lorraine is waiting for his Dartford debut.

The Fleet have led the National South since mid-September but have seen the gap reduce over the last few months. Daryl McMahon’s side have drawn over half of their games in 2016, meaning Sutton United and Maidstone United can catch them if they win their games in hand.

Dartford’s local rivals were undone on Good Friday when they lost their first away game of the campaign to relegation threatened Weston-Super-Mare. The 18 match unbeaten away run ended when Daryl Grubb scored a brace for the Seagulls before former Dart, Matthew Godden grabbed a consolation. Godden leads the way in front of goal for Fleet having scored 17 league goals so far, although the striker has only managed two in 2016.

After thrashing Hemel Hempstead Town 6-0 with a reshuffled team, the loss at Weston-Super-Mare came as a surprise. Having sat on the sidelines for the majority of the campaign, former Dartford striker Charlie Sheringham got a rare start against Hemel Hempstead Town.

Another ex Dart, Tom Bonner is likely to return to the Ebbsfleet starting eleven after finishing his four game ban for his red card against Whitehawk. Bonner and Sheringham were part of the Dartford squad which won promotion to the National League in 2012. Kenny Clark is fourth former Dart in the Ebbsfleet United squad and has played 28 times in the league for the Fleet this term.

McMahon can also look towards a range of depth and experience in his squad with the likes of Aaron McLean, Danny Kedwell and Danny Haynes. The trio have made over 850 Football League appearances between them.

Earlier in the season, Ebbsfleet United won away in the league against the Darts for the first time in 32 years. The Bank Holiday August derby was decided by Jordan Parkes after just seven minutes. Dean Rance was sent off for Fleet but they witheld Dartford pressure to take three points.

Dartford’s previous league visit to Stonebridge Road ended in dramatic fashion. A two goal lead was thrown away in injury time when Nathan Elder’s second of the match made it 2-2. Jon Wallis and Harry Crawford had given the Darts a two goal advantage.

Head to Head

Ebbsfleet United wins: 108 / Dartford wins: 116 / Draws 90

Current League Form

Ebbsfleet United (LWDDWD) Dartford (WLLLLD)
Weston-Super-Mare  A  1-2 Bishop’s Stortford  H  3-1
Hemel Hempstead Town  A  6-0 Havant & Waterlooville  A  0-2
Bath City  A  1-1 Maidenhead United  A  1-2
Maidenhead United  H  0-0 Whitehawk  H  2-4
Gosport Borough  A  2-0 Weston-Super-Mare  A  1-2
Havant & Waterlooville  H  2-2 Hayes & Yeading Utd  A  2-2

Last League Meeting at Stonebridge Road

1 January 2013 – Ebbsfleet United 2 Dartford 2 – attendance 2242

Goalscorers: Wallis (12), Crawford (48), Elder (50, 90)

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

Fleet lineup: Edwards, Stone, Walsh, Lorraine, Howe, Phipp, Barrett, Folkes, Carew, Enveer-Marum, Elder (sub used: Blake, Williams, Azeez)

Previous Meetings (* – F.A Cup)

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
28.12.2010 Ebbsfleet United 2 Dartford 1
28.08.2010 Dartford 1 Ebbsfleet United 1

Stats

Dartford have yet to beat a side in the top five taking two points from a possible 18.

9 – Ebbsfleet United have gone nine unbeaten against the Darts at Stonebridge Road, winning six and drawing three. Dartford last won in the Kent Senior Cup away to Fleet and have to go back to 1979 for an away league victory against their local rivals.

11 – Prior to the defeat at Weston-Super-Mare, the Fleet went eleven games without defeat, matching the unbeaten run they set at the start of the season.

On This Day

Dartford have not won on 28 March since reforming drawing three and losing one. Last year, the Darts were beaten 2-1 by Altrincham in the National League. Ryan Hayes’ deflected shot was consolation after Damian Reeves’ brace for the visitors. Seven years ago, Dartford drew 2-2 with Tonbridge Angels in the Isthmian Premier League. Adam Flanagan rescued a point as the Darts came from behind twice, Bradley Woods-Garness netted the other goal. In 2005, Dartford recorded the same scoreline against Wingate and Finchley in the Southern League Division One East and in 1998 drew 0-0 with Havant Town in the Southern League South Division.

Dartford v Ebbsfleet United

Dartford will be up against local rivals and National League South favourites Ebbsfleet United on Bank Holiday Monday.

The Darts have made a steady start to their campaign picking up ten points in six games. Their opponents have so far lived up to expectations winning their first four, however dropped points on Saturday leaves them second in the National League South.

Dartford bounced back from a 3-2 home defeat against Gosport Borough to win Saturday’s Kent derby at Hartsdown Park. Another pleasing performance over a misfiring Margate ensured the Darts earned a second away win of the season. Lee Noble scored his first of the campaign with half hour played as Tony Burman’s side dominated the first half. Making his first start since March, Lee Burns was dismissed to make life difficult on a slender lead. Any doubts were extinguished with twenty minutes to go when captain Elliot Bradbrook secured the three points.

Ebbsfleet United are sitting five points behind early pace setters Bath City with a game in hand. The Fleet opened their season with a 1-0 win over Basingstoke Town. A Jordan Parkes double gave Daryl McMahon’s side a 2-0 victory at Kent rivals Maidstone United before a third successive clean sheet and 2-0 triumph at St Albans City.

After 310 minutes of football, the Fleet conceded their first goal when Wealdstone took the lead but goals from Parkes and Danny Kedwell turned the match around. On Saturday, it was Ebbsfleet United’s turn to come from behind after finding themselves two down at home to Whitehawk. The second half comeback was completed when former Dart, Matthew Godden scored then ex Ipswich Town player Danny Haynes netted the equaliser.

When the fixture list came out it was a surprise to some that the Darts would meet the Fleet so early in the season. Many expected the Kent derby to take place over the festive period.

It’s been almost two years since the last meeting against Ebbsfleet United in a F.A Cup qualifier. The Darts were under pressure to progress being in the higher division at the time.

After a draw at Stonebridge Road the tie went back to Princes Park which Dartford edged in a 1-0 victory. The Fleet missed a penalty in the first game and once again a spot kick ended up the deciding factor.

Elliot Bradbrook took his chance from 12 yards on his 200th Dartford appearance, putting Tony Burman’s side ahead. Alan Julian became the hero and Anthony Cook the villain as the latter had his penalty saved by the Darts goalkeeper.

The last league meeting at Princes Park came on Boxing Day in 2012. Dartford came from a goal down to take all three points with three unanswered goals. Fleet’s Liam Enveer-Marum scored just after half time but the Darts hit back thanks to a Harry Crawford brace and an Elliot Bradbrook effort.

Both sides have slipped down the Kent pecking order in recent seasons and are keen to return to the National League. The Darts will be determined to put right back to back bottom four finishes in that division.

The Fleet have pressure to succeed due to the financial backing the club is receiving. The club is looking to return to the top flight of non-league football in their third campaign back in the National League South.

Ebbsfleet United hope to be in the Football League sooner rather than later and after a disappointing 2014/15 campaign by their standards, this season has started brightly, with the exception of their abandonment at Stonebridge Road just over a fortnight ago.

Returning back to Princes Park will be central defender Tom Bonner who was instrumental in Dartford’s promotion to the National League. Making over 100 appearances for the Darts, the 27 year old’s performances earned him a move to Cambridge United but injury curtailed his playing time with the U’s.

Kenny Clark also featured for Burman and was part of the 2013/14 squad that finished in the bottom four. Clark was used as a central defender and midfielder that season and made over 30 appearances. In the same campaign, Matthew Godden spent time on loan at Princes Park, the striker scored five goals in nine league games.

Whilst the Darts have recent National League experience at their disposal, the Fleet’s squad is stronger in size. In the summer, manager Daryl McMahon added to his squad which includes newly signed Jordan Parkes from Hemel Hempstead Town, the striker scored 21 times for the Tudors last term.

Danny Kedwell brings experience up front, the former Gillingham and AFC Wimbledon man is in his first full season with the Fleet. The fact another former Dart, Charlie Sheringham has missed games through injury and Adam Cunnington has been used sparingly, despite averaging a goal every other game, shows the depth and quality available to McMahon, a reflection of the kind of budget Ebbsfleet United are working with.

Bragging rights will be up for grabs this Bank Holiday and since the Fleet have changed their name, the Darts are unbeaten in the last three home meetings against their local rivals.

Head to Head

Ebbsfleet United wins: 107 / Dartford wins: 116 / Draws 90

Current League Form

Dartford (WLWDWL) Ebbsfleet United (WWWWD)
Margate  A  2-0 Whitehawk  H  2-2
Gosport Borough  H  2-3 Wealdstone  A  2-1
Concord Rangers  A  3-2 Weston Super Mare  H  A-A
Sutton United  H  2-2 St Albans City  A  2-0
Eastbourne Borough  H  1-0 Maidstone United  A  2-0
Hemel Hempstead Town  A  0-1 Basingstoke Town  H  1-0

Previous Meetings

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
28.12.2010 Ebbsfleet United 2 Dartford 1
28.08.2010 Dartford 1 Ebbsfleet United 1

On This Day
After five games of the 2009/10 Isthmian Premier League campaign the Darts had won their first four before drawing. The unbeaten run continued at AFC Hornchurch with goals from Lee Burns and Elliot Bradbrook. Two years ago, Dartford were beaten by Lincoln City at Princes Park. Elliot Bradbrook’s goal was just a consolation after the Imps went in at half time two up. Twelve years ago Dartford played Bashley, winning a F.A Cup tie 1-0 at home. The two sides had met on the same day five years prior when Bashley won by a single goal in the Southern League Southern Division.

National League South Season Preview 2015/2016 – Part Two

Concord Rangers | Dartford | Eastbourne Borough | Ebbsfleet United

Concord Rangers

Founded: 1967 / Ground: Thames Road

Since the turn of the millennium Concord Rangers have taken off. Starting with the odd piece of silverware in cup competitions, promotions shortly followed. Two Essex Senior League triumphs in five years and promotion to the Isthmian League as runners up, The Beachboys have flown through non league. In the Isthmian Division One North, Concord Rangers finished runners up in their debut season before winning the playoffs. Three years later the Isthmian Premier League playoffs were added to the honours list. Now the Essex club are more than holding their own in the National League South.

concord rangersLast Season

Conference South: 7th

F.A Cup: 1st Round

F.A Trophy: 1st Round

County Cup: Winners

League Top Scorer: Steve Cawley (11 goals)

Average Attendance: 311

The Manager – Adam Flanagan

Former Dartford defender Adam Flanagan returns to Concord Rangers as manager this time, having had a spell as a player with the club. The 37 year old replaces Danny Cowley and will have big shoes to fill, Cowley guided the Beachboys through the divisions in an eight year spell. Flanagan previously managed Brentwood Town and has had success of his own by winning 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

Dartford links continue with the playing squad and the talk of the summer is where the impressive Alex Woodyard will end up. The former Dart is keen to return to the professional game and was influential last season for the Beachboys. If Woodyard remains at Thames Road he could partner Max Cornhill in the middle of the park, the attacking midfielder was released by Dartford after 68 appearances and nine goals. New contracts have been handed to James White who played 112 times for the Darts, and appeared with Flanagan in the Isthmian Premier League title winning side. Tony Stokes, who was on dual registration at Princes Park back in 2012 has also been secured for another term. In between the sticks Conor Gough will keep guard having signed from Grays Athletic, Tom Stephen comes in from East Thurrock United, Sam Bantwick from Flanagan’s previous side Brentwood Town and Ben Greenhalgh moves from Maidstone United.

Last Meetings Versus The Darts

27 January 2009 – Concord Rangers 1 Dartford 3 – view highlights
In the only competitive meeting between the two sides, two Dartford favourites scored the goals to help the Darts progress in the Isthmian League Cup. Brendon Cass followed up his own shot to tuck away a rebound. In the second half, Cody McDonald rounded the goalkeeper then added his second with ease. A well taken volley was merely a consolation for the Beachboys.

Next Meetings

Tuesday 18 August 2015 at Thames Road

Saturday 27 February 2016 at Princes Park

Last Ten Years

crfc last 10 yearsBack to top

Dartford

Founded: 1888 / Ground: Princes Park

Five years on the rise culminated in their first Conference Premier appearance in 26 years where they stayed for three seasons. The Darts longest spell in the top non league flight came to an end last term with a consecutive bottom four finish, a reprieve the previous campaign was just a stay of execution. Historians will say the club has returned to their normal level, but with a modern eco-friendly ground nine years young, a decent following by National South standards they are looking to build a club sustainable in the National League. Whilst the playing budget may not be at the very top, the Darts will look for the right infrastructure within their means.

DartfordLast Season

Conference Premier: 22nd

F.A Cup: 2nd Round

F.A Trophy: 3rd Round

County Cup: 2nd Round

League Top Scorer: Elliot Bradbrook (8 goals)

Average Attendance: 1112

The Manager – Tony Burman

Three promotions including two titles in a five year spell makes relegation last term a minor wound that Burman will be desperate to patch up. The 57 year old celebrated ten consecutive years at the helm back in January adding to two previous spells managing the Darts, the first featured promotion to the Southern League. The former Dartford striker is top in the all time scoring list with 159 goals and he made 535 appearances, third in the all time appearances list. Signed from Charlton Athletic in 1978, there is no questioning Burman’s loyalty and dedication to the Darts.

The Summer

Normally it’s out with the old and in with the new but this summer the old guard remain. Captain, Elliot Bradbrook had to be persuaded to stay last term due to travelling commitments but this time there was no hesitation in signing a new contract. Ryan Hayes, Lee Noble, Danny Harris, Deren Ibrahim and Lee Burns have all been at the club through the Isthmian and Conference Leagues and continue their stay at Princes Park. So in with the new, George Sykes has been brought in from National League champions Barnet to help Andy Pugh and Tom Bradbrook up front. Yet again Burman has had to rebuild his defence opting to sign ex West Ham United defender Callum McNaughton from National League South champions Bromley, former Hibernian defender Tom Gardiner from Cambridge City and Danny Fitzsimons from Luton Town. Jack Simmons will provide width to the midfield and has moved from Canvey Island. Packed with midfield players already, Barry Cogan is added to the list after signing from Dover Athletic. Mark Onyemah who has impressed over pre season has signed a loan deal from Luton Town.

Last Ten Years

dfc last ten years

Back to top

Eastbourne Borough

Founded: 1964 / Ground: Priory Lane

Seven years ago the Sports finished runners up and clinched a Conference Premier place via the playoffs. The club had risen up through the local league as Langney Sports and the Southern League as Eastbourne Borough. The Sussex club spent three seasons in the top flight of non league football and returned to the National League South in 2011. Initially the club found life difficult back in the second tier but over the last three campaigns some stability has returned to Priory Lane. The Sports are one of a number of clubs looking to install a 3G pitch which has approval by the Football Conference.

ebfcLast Season

Conference South: 11th

F.A Cup: 4th Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 3rd Qualifying Round

County Cup: Quarter Final

League Top Scorer: Gavin McCallum (9 goals)

Average Attendance: 574

The Manager – Tommy Widdrington

An experienced former midfielder Tommy Widdrington had a successful playing career with four promotions and two Football League Trophy triumphs. He moved to non league football ten years ago representing Salisbury City and became player manager in 2009/10. Widdrington had a spell as Southend United assistant manager before being appointed Hemel Hempstead Town’s boss, which lasted four months in the lower region of the Southern Premier League. Since February 2012, the 43 year old has stabilised Eastbourne Borough’s league position and has won the previous two National League South Manager of the Month awards for August.

The Summer

Utility player Nathan Collier moved to Priory Road from Princes Park where he played in a variety of positions. The 28 year old played over 100 times for the Darts scoring six goals. Another former Dart, Jack Evans is at the Sussex club following a move from Sutton United in January. Craig Stone has been around his fair share of Kent clubs featuring for Gillingham, Ebbsfleet United and Maidstone United, the 26 year old has joined from Dover Athletic. A new striking option for the Sports will be Elliot Romain who makes the short journey from local rivals Lewes.

Last Meetings Versus The Darts

3 April 2012 – Eastbourne Borough 0 Dartford 1 – view highlights
For the third time in 2011/12 the Darts recorded a singe goal victory over the Sports. The league double against Eastbourne Borough was completed when Elliot Bradbrook scored the decisive goal. Dartford’s  Adam Green missed a first half penalty.

29 November 2011 – Dartford 2 Eastbourne Borough 1
Another Princes Park win by the same scoreline as three months ago meant the Darts progressed to play Brackley Town. Second half goals from Tom Champion and Danny Harris was enough for the host, striker Carl Rook inevitably scored against his former club to half the scoreline for the visitors.

26 November 2011 – Eastbourne Borough 0 Dartford 0 – view highlights
A dour F.A Trophy tie almost ended dramatically when Lee Burns had his effort cleared off the line in the final minute. Other than that there was very little to report so the sides battled it out for a place in first round just three days later.

16 August 2011 – Dartford 2 Eastbourne Borough 1 – view highlights
The first home game of the season for the Darts ended in a second successive victory to maintain a perfect start to the campaign. Charlie Sheringham scored his third in the opening two fixtures and Adam Green made it 2-0. Ethan Strevett’s corner was fumbled into his own net by Dartford goalkeeper Andrew Young in the final minute.

Next Meetings

Tuesday 11 August 2015 at Princes Park

Saturday 20 February 2016 at Priory Lane

Last Ten Years

ebfc last 10 years

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Ebbsfleet United

Founded: 1946 / Ground: Stonebridge Road

Since their name change from Gravesend and Northfleet eight years ago, Ebbsfleet United have really experienced some up and downs. Taken over by a website MyFootballClub caused controversy and that period of the clubs history lasted six years. In that time the Kent club lifted the F.A Trophy, suffered relegation out of the Conference Premier, won the Conference South playoffs then were relegated again. Two years ago, KEH Sports Limited a group of Kuwaiti investors took control of the Fleet. Losing a playoff final to Dover Athletic and an eighth place finish last term, Ebbsfleet United are amongst the favourites this time thanks to Middle Eastern backing.

EUFClogoLast Season

Conference South: 8th

F.A Cup: 3rd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: Quarter Final

County Cup: 2nd Round

League Top Scorer: Matthew Godden (15 goals)

Average Attendance: 940

The Manager – Daryl McMahon

A first senior managerial job began for Daryl McMahon in May when he replaced Jamie Day in the dugout. Whilst playing the former academy boss and club captain gained coaching experience at his former clubs. Assistant manager at Boreham Wood and two spells as caretaker manager with the Fleet will stand the former midfielder in good stead. As a player McMahon won the F.A Trophy with Stevenage and made Football League appearances for Leyton Orient, Torquay United, Port Vale and Notts County. In June 2013, he joined Ebbsfleet United and after a brief stint back at Boreham Wood as a player rejoined the Fleet as manager.

The Summer

Last season’s Conference South player of the Year, Jordan Parkes is the biggest signing for the Fleet this summer. McMahon swooped for the man who netted 21 times for Hemel Hempstead Town last term. Goalkeeper Jonathan Miles makes his move from Tottenham Hotspur and has a good chance of being number one with the loan departure of Preston Edwards. Robbie Willmott joins from Newport County and John Paul Kissock from Whitehawk. In to provide cover for the left back spot is Craig Braham-Barrett from relegated Cheltenham Town. Former Darts, Tom Bonner, Kenny Clark and Charlie Sheringham remain at Stonebridge Road and may return to Princes Park as early as Bank Holiday August.

Last Meetings Versus The Darts

29 October 2013 – Dartford 1 Ebbsfleet United 0 – view highlights
Once again a spot kick became decisive in this F.A Cup qualifier. Elliot Bradbrook took his chance from 12 yards on his 200th Dartford appearance. The visitors had a penalty of their own which was saved by Alan Julian, Fleet’s Anthony Cook missed.

26 October 2013 – Ebbsfleet United 1 Dartford 1 – view highlights
With a place in the F.A Cup first round up for grabs this local derby took on extra significance. Fleet’s Ben May missed a penalty which proved costly. Lee Noble put the Darts ahead but the sides were forced to meet again when Anthony Cook equalised.

Next Meetings

Monday 31 August 2015 at Princes Park

Monday 28 March 2016 at Stonebridge Road

Last Ten Years

eufc last 10 years

 

Back to top

Dartford v Ebbsfleet United

Dartford host rivals Ebbsfleet United as the two sides replay their F.A Cup tie for a place in the first round.

Victory will ensure a place in the proper rounds and a chance to take on fellow Conference Premier side Salisbury City.

For the second season in a row the Darts and the Fleet couldn’t be separated at Stonebridge Road in front of almost 3000 fans. Once again it was the visitors who failed to hold on to their lead. Ebbsfleet United missed a glorious chance to edge in front when goalkeeper Alan Julian conceded a penalty, which was blazed over the crossbar by Ben May on 11 minutes.

Just before the half time interval Dartford midfielder Lee Noble edged the visitors ahead. Following up from a blocked effort Noble guided the ball into Preston Edwards’s net. In the windy conditions Ebbsfleet United salvaged their place in the draw. Two former Chelmsford City players linked up to create the equaliser. Billy Bricknell cut the ball back to Anthony Cook just past the hour to make it 1-1.

Tony Burman was pleased to get a replay and told www.newshopper,co.uk: “The pressure was on us to win the game today and we haven’t, but I’m delighted with the performance of the players, especially as we were depleted as a squad”, he added: “Losing five members of your squad is not easy and it was a big ask for us coming here with that in mind”.

When talking about a potential first round fixture Burman commented: “We’ve got to get the replay out of the way first before we can even think about what might await in the next round”.

Last season at Princes Park the side who went ahead also failed to make it count. In a Conference Premier clash Liam Enveer-Marum opened the scoring for the Fleet but Harry Crawford restored parity four minutes later. The striker added another on 68 minutes and Elliot Bradbrook put the game beyond doubt ten minutes from time.

Team News

Strikers Matthew Godden and Adam Birchall are unavailable because their parent clubs don’t want them cup tied. The Darts included new signing Tommy Forecast on the bench as goalkeeper cover. On the injury front Jason Prior and Tyrone Sterling are unlikely to feature and Kenny Clark may return.

Ebbsfleet United could be without injured duo Shane Huke and Jon Howe. Huke started in Saturday but was unable to complete the full ninety minutes.

Last Meeting At Princes Park

26 December 2012 – Dartford 3 Ebbsfleet United 1 – Att: 3116

Goalscorers: Enveer-Marum (48), Crawford (52,68), Bradbrook (80)

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

The Fleet Lineup: Edwards, Lorraine, Stone, Phipp, Howe, Barrett, Bellamy, Azeez, Walsh, Enveer-Marum, Elder (sub used: Greenhalgh)

dfc v eufc stats

Ebbsfleet United v Dartford

Dartford eye up a place in the F.A Cup first round on Saturday when they face local rivals Ebbsfleet United.

The short trip across to Stonebridge Road ended all square last season after the previous fixture at Princes Park, six days earlier finished 3-1 to the Darts.

Dartford let a two goal lead slip on New Years Day with Jon Wallis scoring from a low drive and Harry Crawford netting the second. Nathan Elder smashed a shot beyond Marcus Bettinelli as the Fleet hit back immediately and with seconds to go the striker denied Dartford victory in injury time.

At Princes Park, Liam Enveer-Marum now playing for Braintree Town put Ebbsfleet United ahead but Crawford restored parity four minutes later. The striker added another on 68 minutes and Elliot Bradbrook put the game beyond doubt ten minutes from time. Whilst Dartford finished a credible eighth in the Conference Premier in 2012/13, the Fleet were relegated and now compete a division lower.

In less than a year a lot has changed on and off the field for this weekends opponents. A takeover spelt the end of the controversial MyFootballClub ownership days and a Kuwaiti company KEH Sports Limited has saved the club. The popular Liam Daish left his post as Fleet boss and in has come former Charlton Athletic defender Steve Brown.

Dartford go into this weekends cup tie on the back of victory over Hyde. Both sides let leads slip as a Matthew Godden hat trick sealed a topsy turvy 4-3 win for the Darts, stretching their home run to four unbeaten. Loan signing Godden ensured the Darts settled early on with a brace inside a three minute spell. The Scunthorpe striker finished a well worked move on 12 minutes after Ryan Hayes’ pass was dummied by Danny Harris. The visitors had goalkeeper David Carnell subbed due to injury and a minute later his replacement Ashley Frith was picking the ball out the net. Poor Hyde defending led to Godden’s third goal in as many games when he nodded home a Hayes corner. Lee Noble conceded a penalty which Scott Spencer converted and the striker equalised just before the break, leaving the score 2-2 at half time.

In the second half, Hyde turned the match around and looked set for their first win of the campaign when Louis Almond, on loan from Blackpool struck a deflected free kick past Alan Julian to give the Tigers an advantage. Trailing with ten minutes on the clock, Tony Burman swapped youngster George Monger with Ryan Hayes and was rewarded when the midfielder scored a superb 30 yard lob just three minutes after coming on. Godden, who spent a successful spell on loan at the Fleet completed hat trick in the 87th minute with a neatly taken volley.

Both bosses spoke to kentonline.co.uk after the F.A Cup draw, Tony Burman is cautious about managing his side against local rivals who play in a division lower, he said: “We’re in a higher league, which suggests we should win, but cup football is a funny old game and that’s why it’s so exciting”. His opposite number is also looking forward to the tie of the round, Steve Brown commented: “”I had a wry smile when Dartford came out. It’s a juicy one for the media and the supporters”, he added: “It’s a much more favourable draw for us than it is for Tony. Tony will think that’s about as bad as it could get”.

007

Ebbsfleet United have already had to negotiate two rounds having started in the second qualifying round. Folkestone Invicta came to Stonebridge Road and were Fleets first victims. The Isthmian Division One South side were narrowly beaten by Daryl McMahon’s early winner. In the following round Brown’s side faced fellow Conference South team Eastbourne Borough and kept another clean sheet. A Ben May brace was enough to earn victory and put Fleet a game away from the first round for a second year running.

The Fleet have tasted defeat just three times in the Conference South this campaign but a number of early season draws has seen the Fleet start steadily. After nine matches the Kent club had won one and drawn six leaving them in fifteenth but a solid run has lifted Steve Brown’s side up to seventh.

A comprehensive 6-0 triumph at Weston Super-Mare kick started Brown’s men into action. Not only did they hit six in the league, they hit six in the Kent Senior Cup tie a few days earlier beating Sittingbourne 6-1. The Fleet defeated table toppers Eastleigh 3-1 at Stonebridge Road and on Saturday an early goal from Stacy Long was cancelled out by Gosport Borough’s Sam Pearce, before Ben May netted a second half winner.

The Fleet’s run of half a dozen consecutive wins was ended on Tuesday night in an away trip to Bishop’s Stortford. Cliff Akurang opened the scoring for the home side and added another before he was substituted on half an hour with an injury. Kyle Vassell extended the lead for the Bishops but the Fleet pulled two goals back courtesy of Shane Huke and Anthony Cook.

Dartford have already played Ebbsfleet United in a pre season friendly to warm up for this current campaign. Billy Bricknell, who has scored for both Chelmsford City and Dover Athletic against the Darts, managed another for the Fleet against the run of play. With time running out Bradbrook made sure the friendly finished level at 1-1.

Team News

Lee Burns captained Dartford to the 4-3 win on the weekend but the armband is likely to return to Elliot Bradbrook who missed the game through suspension. The midfielder returns from his one match ban for picking up five cautions. Matt Fry was back in league action after a two match absence through injury whilst Tyrone Sterling and Adam Birchall have been ruled out. Kenny Clark has struggled with a hamstring injury and Jason Prior has been nursing an ankle problem, both players may not be ready to take part but are waiting on the Physio’s report. Matthew Godden could sit out of the F.A Cup tie to prevent him being cup tied for parent club Scunthorpe United. However, Tony Burman is currently in talks with the Iron to see if Godden can feature on Saturday.

For Ebbsfleet United, Jon Howe has picked up an injury whilst Andy Pugh and Grant Basey are back in training. On loan Cambridge United striker, Pugh has had his period with the Fleet extended, however he has not been given permission to play on Saturday.

Head to Head

Ebbsfleet United wins: 107 / Dartford wins: 115 / Draws 90

Current Form (all competitions / FAC – F.A Cup / KSC – Kent Senior Cup)

Ebbsfleet United (LWWWWW) Dartford (WWDDLW)
Bishop’s Stortford A 2-3 Hyde H 4-3
Gosport Borough H 2-1 Charlton Athletic (KSC) H 1-0
Eastbourne Borough (FAC) H 2-0 Hereford United A 2-2
Eastleigh H 3-1 Salisbury City H 1-1
Weston Super-Mare A 6-0 Gateshead A 0-2
Sittingbourne (KSC) A 6-1 Southport H 1-0

Last Competitive Meeting at Stonebridge Road

26 March 2013 – Ebbsfleet United 2 Dartford 2 – Att: 2242

Goalscorers: Wallis (12), Crawford (48), Elder (50, 90)

The Fleet Lineup: Edwards, Stone, Walsh, Lorraine, Howe, Phipp, Barrett, Folkes, Carew, Enveer-Marum, Elder (subs used: Blake, Williams, Azeez)

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

Match Stats

eufc v dfc stats

Previous Five Competitive Meetings

01.01.2013 Ebbsfleet United 2 Dartford 2
26.12.2012 Dartford 3 Ebbsfleet United 1
28.12.2010 Ebbsfleet United 2 Dartford 1
28.08.2010 Dartford 1 Ebbsfleet United 1
29.01.2008 (KSC) Ebbsfleet United 4 Dartford 1

F.A Cup Ten Year Performance

FAC

 

 

 

Dartford v Ebbsfleet United

Dartford will not be meeting local rivals Ebbsfleet United in the Conference Premier this season but the sides meet in a friendly on Tuesday night.

League meetings last term resulted in the Darts feeling the festive spirit with a 3-1 win at Princes Park and a 2-2 stalemate at Stonebridge Road. In the first meeting Fleet top scorer Liam Enveer-Marum opened the scoring just after half time. A Harry Crawford double had Dartford ahead and the win was sealed by captain Elliot Bradbrook.

On New Years Day the honours were even thanks to last gasp equaliser by Ebbsfleet United’s Nathan Elder. Jon Wallis and Crawford put the Darts two up but Elder’s double ensured the points were shared.

Hayes

Ryan Hayes celebrates against the Fleet

The Darts remain winless during their warm up to their second season in the Conference Premier. After two draws the club has suffered two defeats with the latest at Bromley. Former Dartford striker Jay May, brother of Ben scored the winner at Hayes Lane to give the hosts a 1-0 victory. Pacey winger Lanre Azeez has featured for Tony Burman’s side in pre season having been part of Fleet’s youth team and senior squads. The 20 year old played in 30 of Ebbsfleet United’s matches last season starting 11 times.

Most of the summer football news in Kent has revolved around Ebbsfleet United’s survival and subsequent takeover. The MyFootballClub experiment finally succumbed and a group of Kuwati investors saved the Fleet. Advised by former Charlton Athletic Chief Executive Peter Varney,  KEH Sports Limited took over the club.

Ebbsfleet United have a new look management team with strong Charlton Athletic connections, former player Steve Brown is now in charge and his number two is Steve Gritt who managed the Addicks. Brown has raided Dover Athletic for Ben May, Shane Huke, Dean Rance, Daryl McMahon and Billy Bricknell with the majority of players familiar to Dartford’s time in the Conference South. Stacy Long returns to Stonebridge Road, his last spell ended with a F.A Trophy winners medal. The Fleet have also added Osei Sankofa, Michael Thalassitis, Aiden Palmer, Brandon Hall and Michael Corcoran to their ranks.

azeez

Azeez in action for the Fleet last season

Stepping in to replace Southend United on Tuesday night, the Fleet will be amongst the favourites in the Conference South following relegation last season. Last time Ebbsfleet United participated in the Conference South it was they who had the edge over Dartford, drawing 1-1 in August 2010 before winning 2-1 at home in December that year.

Ebbsfleet United have played just twice so far during pre season starting off against Isthmian Premier League side Thamesmead Town. Two goals each from Long and May with Rance getting on the score sheet as well handed the Fleet a 5-1 triumph. On Saturday they took on Maidstone United at the Gallagher Stadium and this time the Fleet were beaten 3-0.

East Thurrock United v Dartford XI

Also this week, a Dartford XI travel to Rookery Hill to face East Thurrock United on Wednesday night. The Essex club finished fifth in last season’s Isthmian Premier League having been promoted to the division two years ago. The Rocks have played Dartford six times and although they have never won a friendly against the Darts they have been victorious in their only two competitive matches.

Back in 2004/05, East Thurrock United did the double over Dartford with 4-0 and 3-0 wins in the Southern League East division. The Rocks ended up runners up behind Fisher Athletic that season with the Darts finishing 16th. In the four friendlies since, the Darts have won three and drawn one.

Ebbsfleet United v Dartford

 

Dartford open the New Year by facing local rivals Ebbsfleet United for a second time this week and hope to add to their Boxing Day victory.

The Darts recorded their first league win over the Fleet for twenty years on Wednesday to end their four game losing streak. Just after half time Liam Enver-Marum put Ebbsfleet United in front and four minutes later Harry Crawford started his festive goal cheer. The Dartford striker equalised before completing his brace putting the Darts ahead. Captain Elliot Bradbrook settled the score with ten minutes remaining to secure maximum points.

Tony Burman’s side then hosted an in form Cambridge United team on the weekend in a second consecutive fixture at Princes Park. The Darts put in a spirited and gutsy performance to end 2012 and come away with a well earned draw. Crawford’s swivel and turn half way through the first half put Dartford 1-0 up, the striker notched his third goal in two matches and tenth of the season. Michael Gash’s free kick on the stroke of half time found its way through the defence to tie the game. The visitors created more chances in the second half but were denied by the superb Marcus Bettinelli between the Dartford sticks.

Dartford manager Tony Burman was content with a point and told BBC Radio Kent: “We could have said on chances it was a fair result”, he added: “I’m just pleased we haven’t lost. We’ve taken four points off Cambridge which is a great achievement for us”. As recent weather conditions played havoc with pitches up and down the country the Darts have managed to fulfill their festive fixtures. Burman recognises the toll it’s taking on the players and is delighted with the commitment shown, he commented: “The players gave their all on Boxing Day and today and [having played] on heavy pitches, they’re absolutely shattered”.

Four points from the last six leaves Dartford nestling in seventh place and the draw versus Cambridge United keeps them ahead of the U’s. However, Burman’s side have lost their last three away matches. Meanwhile, The Fleet are struggling this season and after their loss on Boxing Day the club are second from bottom. Liam Daish’s side were left without a match on the weekend when their match at Kenilworth Road against Luton Town was called of due to a waterlogged pitch.

Ebbsfleet United have lost their last three league games conceding eleven goals in the process. The Fleet boss has suggested he may have to look towards the transfer market to get the club away from trouble. Daish spoke to BBC Radio Kent and said: “I know they’re working hard but there’s a bit of naivety there”, he added: “It needs to be addressed and it probably needs to be addressed with different personnel”.

The last meeting between the two sides at Stonebridge Road went the way of Ebbsfleet United as Dartford were beaten 2-1. Fleet defender Derek Duncan curled in a free kick for the opener on ten minutes. Four minutes later Ryan Hayes sent in a cross from a dead ball situation and Elliot Bradbrook headed the leveller. The match turned on 32 minutes when Calum Willock outpaced the last defender and won a spot kick. Joe Bruce was dismissed and Willock got up to put the Fleet ahead. To rub salt into the Dartford wound James White was also sent off after coming on as a substitute.

Head to Head

Ebbsfleet United wins: 107 / Dartford wins: 115 / Draws 88 / Dartford goals for: 476 / Ebbsfleet United goals: 454

Team News

Lee Burns failed a fitness test on Saturday and sat out the full ninety minutes for the first time in the league this campaign. Lee Noble was substituted against Cambridge United on the hour with a possible hamstring strain. Marcus Bettinelli continues his loan spell on a month to month basis but he can be recalled by Fulham at any time. Tom Bonner and Lee Noble remain one caution away from suspension for five yellow cards.

Prior the Boxing Day clash the Fleet lost the services of Patrick Ada after his contract was terminated by the club for his imprisonment. The loan spell of striker Matthew Godden ended when Scunthorpe United recalled the player. Nathan Elder had been out with injury before the game at Princes Park but the forward made a return that day. Moses Ashokodi has also been missed by the team in recent weeks through injury. Lian Enveer-Marum and Neil Barrett are currently on four cautions for the season and another yellow will rule them out of the Fleet’s next match.

Form

Ebbsfleet United (LLLDWW) Dartford (DWLLLL)
Dartford A 1-3 Cambridge United A 1-1
Mansfield Town A 1-4 Ebbsfleet United H 3-1
Cambridge United H 2-4 Kidderminster Harriers H 1-5
Grimsby Town H 1-1 Lincoln City A 2-4
Macclesfield Town A 2-1 Nuneaton Town H 0-1
Hyde H 3-2 Tamworth A 2-3

Last Meeting at Stonebridge Road

28 December 2010 – Ebbsfleet United 1 Dartford 2- Att: 2435

Goalscorers: Duncan (10), Bradbrook (14), Willock (32 pen)

The Fleet Lineup: Edwards, Stone, Lorraine, Easton, Duncan, Howe, Marwa, Phipp, West, Williams, Willock (subs used: Shakes, Ginty)

The Darts Lineup: Young, Burgess, Bonner, Bruce, Goodacre, Champion, Hayes, Sheringham, Purcell, Burns, Bradbrook (subs used: White, Berquez, Burchell)

Stats

Harry Crawford is still searching for his first away goal in the Conference Premier league this season

Dartford and Ebbsfleet United have now gone seven league matches without a clean sheet

The Darts recent record in the first New Year fixtures has seen one defeat in seven which happened at Welling United

2011/12 Welling United H 1-0
2010/11 Welling United A 1-2
2009/10 Cray Wanderers A 2-1
2008/09 Staines Town H 0-0
2007/08 Witham Town A 4-0
2006/07 Whyteleafe H 4-2
2005/06 Sittingbourne H 0-0