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Eastbourne Borough v Dartford

Steve King takes his Dartford side to Eastbourne Borough on the weekend aiming to stay top of the National League South.

The Darts moved into pole position with an excellent result at Hungerford Town in their last away game to remain at the summit. Their closest challengers then dropped points on Tuesday night meaning Dartford head into Saturday’s fixture with a two point lead, whilst Eastbourne Borough currently occupy seventh place.

Dartford have won eight of their first eleven games in their best start to a season since winning the Isthmian Premier League in 2009. The latest victory came against Hungerford Town in a top of the table clash. Jacob Berkeley-Agyepong had a huge impact from off the bench turning defeat into a triumph. The midfielder had started every game before travelling to Bulpit Lane and was almost ruled out after his harsh dismissal against Slough Town, however his red card was rescinded allowing the former Aldershot Town man to be available.

A soft first-half penalty conceded by former Eastbourne Borough full back, Gavin McCallum led to Hungerford Town’s Ryan Seager goal from the spot. McCallum played almost 150 games for the Sports scoring 25 times. Berkeley-Agyepong and Alfie Pavey were introduced in the second half and the pair combined for the equaliser. Pavey’s header back across to Berkeley-Agyepong was smashed home from inside the box. If the Dartford midfielder needed an assist for his first goal it was a superb solo effort for his second. Receiving the ball from a short throw-in, Berkeley-Agyepong made his way across the pitch and unleashed an unstoppable long range shot to score the winner.

Dartford’s first ever win at Bulpit Lane was their fourth consecutive away win. Steve King described his side’s performance as ‘bitty’ but a half-time chat helped turn the game around, he commented to Dartford FC TV: “We didn’t do enough in the first half with too many long balls”, he added: “We felt we needed to do more in possession, we needed to be braver on the ball”. King also pointed out that the quality of his squad helped earn the three points, he said: “We made subs early to change the shape and it got us back in the game. Jacob had a knock during the week and didn’t train and we thought we have quality players, so we didn’t need to risk him. We went with what we went with, it didn’t quite work then Jacob has come on and scored one good goal and one fantastic goal”.

Dartford have won their last two matched against Eastbourne Borough since a heavy 6-0 defeat at Priory Lane in April 2019. Striker, Elliott Romain will be available after serving his one match ban and could play a part against his old side, who he scored against in last season’s visit to Sussex. Romain was on target as well as Norman Wabo in a 2-0 victory. The return fixture ended 2-1 to the Darts which included Jack Jebb’s stunning free-kick at Princes Park.

The Darts will be without the injured Ricky Modeste, whilst Craig Braham-Barrett and David Ijaha have been nursing injuries. Charlie Sheringham and Ronnie Vint have gone out on loan, Abdul Osman has left the club, but Moussa Bakayoko returned to the bench on the weekend.

Under Danny Bloor, Eastbourne Borough have started their campaign well. The Sports finished their last three season’s in eighteenth place and so far this term they are in the final playoff place. The Sussex club, also made the first round of the F.A Cup where they were beaten 3-0 by Blackpool, but they have only picked up two points in their last three outings.

Former Dartford full back, Nick Arnold is in the Sports squad but has yet to make an appearance. Bloor will have a variety of attacking players to choose from including Charlie Walker, Dean Cox and Chris Whelpdale, all three of them have netted against the Darts in the past. Charley Kendall is also one to watch, his four goals whilst on loan has led to an extended stay and along with Kai Innocent. The duo have been an integral part of the Sports side so far this season.

At home, Eastbourne Borough have an even record of two wins, two draws and two defeats. In their last home fixture, they went down 1-0 versus St Albans City to a Shaun Jeffers goal, which will sound familiar to the Darts after the same combination at Princes Park last month. They did however comfortably beat basement side Braintree Town 4-0 earlier in November before a pair of away draws against Tonbridge Angels and Oxford City.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 12 / Eastbourne Borough wins: 6 / Draws: 4

Current League Form

Dartford
(WWLWWL)
Eastbourne Borough
(DWLWWL)
Hungerford TownA2-1St Albans CityH0-1
Slough TownH2-0Oxford CityA1-1
St Albans CityH0-1Tonbridge AngelsA2-2
Maidstone UnitedA2-0Braintree TownH4-0
Hemel Hempstead TownA3-1Ebbsfleet UnitedH1-1
Dorking WanderersH2-3Welling UnitedH2-1

Last Six League Meetings

22.02.2020Dartford2Eastbourne Borough1
02.11.2019Eastbourne Borough0Dartford2
20.04.2019Eastbourne Borough6Dartford0
08.09.2018Dartford2Eastbourne Borough2
14.04.2018Eastbourne Borough0Dartford1
12.09.2017Dartford4Eastbourne Borough2

Stats

Dartford have lost just once in the league against Eastbourne Borough in their last 12 games against the Sports (W9, D2)

The Darts have won four of their last six league visits to Priory Lane (D1, L1)

Josh Hill made his 50th Dartford appearance on Saturday. His fifth substitute appearance at Hungerford Town brought up the defender’s half century.

On This Day

Brian Gregory scored a hat-trick inside eight minutes to help Dartford to a 5-0 victory over Yeovil Town in 1981. The much travelled striker only just signed for the Darts from rivals Dover Athletic and made an instant impact in the Alliance Premier League win. Elliot Bradbrook scored twice as the Darts beat Havant and Waterlooville 4-2 at Princes Park in 2015. The former Darts captain opened the scoring from the spot and Danny Harris doubled the lead in first-half stoppage time. Havant and Waterlooville hit back in the second-half with goals from Dan Strugnell and Matt Paterson. Dartford managed to pull away again when Bradbrook netted once more and Ebou Adams grabbed his first senior goal. Dartford’s last away game on this day was in 1998 when they lost 3-2 at Baldock Town in the Southern League South.

Hungerford Town v Dartford

Dartford travel to third place Hungerford Town this weekend in search of their first ever victory at Bulpit Lane.

The Darts are hoping to regain top spot after slipping to second on Tuesday night. Dorking Wanderer’s win in mid-week leaves Steve King’s side level on points with the Surrey club, but behind on goal difference. Hungerford Town have ambitions of their own knowing a win will leapfrog them above the Darts.

Bulpit Lane has not been a happy hunting ground for Dartford in recent years. Suffering defeat in their first three visits without scoring a goal. Last season, the only meeting between the two clubs, the Darts showed progress in a 2-2 draw. After Hungerford Town took the lead through Zidan Akers, Dartford hit back when Darren McQueen equalised and Luke Wanadio put the visitors in front. However, Dartford were denied their first win at the Crusaders and with two minutes left Conor Lynch levelled the match.

Steve King’s ruthless streak was rewarded last weekend with the signing of former Charlton Athletic striker Chris Dickson. The experienced 35-year-old scored twice on his debut against Slough Town. At National South level he has been a reliable source of goals most recently for Chelmsford City and Hampton and Richmond Borough. At AFC Hornchurch he has netted 30 goals in 46 games and has joined the Darts on dual registration. He has been added to the front line which now boasts loanee Alfie Pavey as well as Jack Barham, Elliott Romain and Charlie Sheringham. The squad now has extra depth up front where King feels the side need improving. For all Dartford’s creative play the Dartford manager believes they are lacking the finishing edge.

After a scrappy first half against Slough Town, King’s half-time team talk did wonders and so victory was just the tonic after the 1-0 home defeat to St Albans City. The Darts boss was pleased to get the side’s home form back on track, especially after defeat against Dorking Wanderers at Princes Park earlier in the month. Hungerford Town will provide another type of test on the road against a top three team, Dartford will want to lay down a marker.

It will come as a relief that this week Jacob Berkeley-Agyepong’s red card versus Slough Town has been rescinded, the midfielder has started every game this season and is a key player in the middle of the park. On the injury front, Ricky Modeste is out with a hairline fracture of the knee, whilst Craig Braham-Barrett, David Ijaha and Abdul Osman have been out in recent weeks. King has also been able to call upon goalkeeper Ethan Wady who got the nod over Craig King last weekend and Connor Essam has kept his place in the side, despite competition from Ronnie Vint. Luke Allen also made his first start of the campaign proving King will happily make changes.

Hungerford Town have turned the table upside down with their early season form. The Crusaders finished bottom of the National South last term and would have been relegated in any normal year. But 2020 is no normal year and the Berkshire club under the stewardship of Danny Robinson have won six of their opening nine games, they only won eight in 33 attempts last season.

The Crusaders have been here before, when they were one of the surprise packages after winning promotion. Hungerford Town finished their first ever campaign in the National South in sixth place and were denied a playoff spot due to ground regulations. Hit by the dreaded second season syndrome, the Berkshire side stayed up on the last day in the following two campaigns before finishing last in March.

Manager, Robinson won the F.A Vase with Thatcham Town and took them up the non-league pyramid, they were also on the verge of another promotion before the pandemic ended the 2019/2020 season. His appointment this summer has seen almost a new squad assembled. Ryan Seager is one of the new signings impressing, the striker has scored seven in nine games since joining from Yeovil Town.

Although early days, Hungerford Town have already proven they can mix it with the pace setters. Victory over league leaders Dorking Wanderers and a draw with unbeaten St Albans City have been added to victories against teams at the bottom end of the table, who they would have been competing with eight months ago.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 2 / Hungerford Town wins: 3 / Draws: 2

Current League Form

Dartford
(WLWWLW)
Hungerford Town
(DWLWWL)
Slough TownH2-0St Albans CityA0-0
St Albans CityH0-1Slough TownA3-1
Maidstone UnitedA2-0Hampton & RichmondH0-1
Hemel Hempstead TownA3-1Braintree TownA2-1
Dorking WanderersH2-3Dorking WanderersH2-0
Havant & WaterloovileH2-1Ebbsfleet UnitedA2-3

Last Six Meetings

26.08.2019Hungerford Town2Dartford2
22.12.2018Dartford2Hungerford Town1
25.08.2018Hungerford Town1Dartford0
09.12.2017Hungerford Town1Dartford0
05.08.2017Dartford0Hungerford Town0
14.04.2017Hungerford Town2Dartford0

Stats

Dartford have never won at Bulpit Lane (D1, L3) and last season’s visit was the first time in four attempts in which the Darts managed to score.

The Darts have score in three of their seven meetings against the Crusaders, each time netting twice.

Tom Bonner made his 350th start in a Dartford shirt when he lined up against Slough Town. The defender is now on 352 appearances in total.

On This Day

Steve King faced his future employers five years ago and knocked them out of the F.A Trophy. His Whitehawk side came to Princes Park and won the third qualifying round tie 2-1. In that Whitehawk side that day was Craig Braham-Barrett and David Ijaha was an unused substitute. Danny Mills, Dave Martin and Paul Lorraine were other Dartford links involved in Whitehawk’s starting eleven. The last win for the Darts on this day was back in 1987 when they beat Dorchester Town 2-1 in the Southern Premier League. Since then the Darts drew a Southern League Southern Division fixture 0-0 with Ashford Town in 1998 and lost 1-0 at home to AFC Hornchurch, in the Isthmian Premier League in 2009 before the trophy exit in 2015.

Dartford v Slough Town

Dartford have the chance to avenge their F.A Cup exit against Slough Town when they host the Rebels for a second time this season on the weekend.

In unusual circumstances, the Darts opened their season in the F.A Cup losing to Saturday’s opponents. Jack McKnight’s last-minute penalty knocked Dartford out at the first hurdle, in the second qualifying round. Victory for Slough Town meant they redressed their own defeat against the Darts in July’s National South playoff eliminator.

Leading up to this weekend’s fixture, Dartford top the National South table by a point having played the most games in the division, thanks to their early cup exit. Steve King has managed to rack up the points in their first nine games, but they couldn’t add to their tally following a defeat at home to St Albans City on Tuesday night.

Charlie Sheringham making his first league start of the campaign was left to rue his second-half penalty miss as St Albans City won 1-0. A last minute strike from Shaun Jeffers was the difference between the two sides condemning the Darts to their second National South loss of the season.

Prior kick off the Darts announced the return of Alfie Pavey on a loan deal until the end of January from Barnet. The striker scored 29 goals in 55 appearances in a previous loan spell and during the 2017/2018 campaign, when he won the National South Player of the Year award. Gavin McCallum also made his first league start of the season replacing the injured Craig Braham-Barrett. Jack Barham was named on the bench alongside Pavey with the pair making an appearance later on.

Highlights of last season’s game at Prince Park courtesy of DFC TV

Slough Town opened their campaign by recording another 1-0 victory, after their F.A Cup win against the Darts. The triumph over Hemel Hempstead Town was followed by defeat at Dorking Wanderers and an F.A Cup exit of their own. What followed was a dramatic 4-4 with Welling United with the Rebels score two injury time goals to complete a comeback from 3-1 down in the last twenty minutes.

The Berkshire club approach this weekend’s fixture on the back of three straight defeats against Maidstone United, Billericay Town then Hungerford Town on Tuesday night.

The Rebels found themselves behind early in the game when Ryan Seager scored on six minutes, he also had another but his effort was ruled out for offside. Slough Town were forced to make a change when Cameron McGilp came off injured before Dan Roberts chipped in an equaliser. Parity lasted a short while because two minutes before the interval Seager scored again. Craig Fasanmade extended Hungerford Town’s lead to leave the Rebels sitting in fourteenth place in the National South.

Last season Dartford squandered a two-goal lead at Princes Park under the guidance of Tony Burman. Darren McQueen and Josh Hill scored within a couple of minutes of each other to hand the Darts a comfortable advantage. It took just another two minutes for Dan Roberts to set Slough Town on their way. The Rebels kept the momentum going in the second half and when Matt Lench then Ben Harris netted, the visitors went home with all three points.

In January, Slough Town completed a league double with a 1-0 home victory, in which Dartford’s Sanchez Ming was sent off. The third meeting between the two sides came in the playoff elimination round. A brace from Charlie Sheringham and Luke Wanadio’s strike helped the Darts progress with a 3-0 win.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 4 / Slough Town wins: 3 / Draws: 2

Current League Form

Dartford
(LWWLWW)
Slough Town
(LLLWDL)
St Albans CityH0-1Hungerford TownH1-3
Maidstone UnitedA2-0Billericay TownA0-2
Hemel Hempstead TownA3-1Maidstone UnitedH2-3
Dorking WanderersH2-3Bath CityH2-1
Havant & WaterloovileH2-1Welling UnitedH4-4
Chippenham TownA2-1Dorking WanderersA1-3

Last Six Meetings

03.10.2020Dartford0Slough Town1
19.07.2020Slough Town0Dartford3
18.01.2020Slough Town1Dartford0
28.09.2019Dartford2Slough Town3
16.02.2019Slough Town2Dartford2
08.12.2018Dartford1Slough Town1

Stats

Dartford’s only home win against Slough Town came 39 years ago in the F.A Trophy, the Darts won 4-1 in the first round

The Rebels are unbeaten in their three visits to Princes Park (W2, D1)

Dartford won their first three meetings with Slough Town, all cup ties. Since then the Darts have won just one in the last six (D2, L3)

On This Day

New loan signing Alfie Pavey scored a brace to keep Dartford top of National League South three years ago. In an entertaining 3-3 draw the Darts twice came from behind against Wealdstone thanks to Pavey before substitute Andy Pugh fired Dartford ahead with ten minutes left. However, the Stones levelled from the spot three minutes from time before Lee Noble saw red in stoppage time. In 2009, the Darts were knocked out of the F.A Trophy against rivals Dover Athletic. After falling a goal behind, Jay May and Danny Harris put the Darts in front, but Dartford conceded twice more in a 3-2 defeat. May also scored on this day in 2006 netting the winner against Leatherhead in the Isthmian Division One South.

Dartford v St Albans City

Dartford host unbeaten St Albans City on Tuesday night with the chance to increase their lead over their opponents.

The Darts extended their advantage at the top of the National South on the weekend after beating rivals Maidstone United. Victory took Steve King’s side four points clear at the summit, but St Albans City pose an early threat despite sitting in seventh place.

Ian Allinson’s team have only played five league games and in their solitary away day so far, the Saints dropped their only points of the campaign. On the weekend, whilst the Hertfordshire club had a day off, Dartford travelled to Maidstone United for their first Kent derby of the season.

Captain, Tom Bonner helped secure a third straight away win for the Darts on his 350th appearance for the club. Dartford’s clinical finishing was enough to separate the two sides. Bonner’s strike opened the scoring and a few minutes later, Charlie Sheringham made sure of the three points with Dartford’s second goal in a 2-0 derby day win.

Steve King labelled Saturday’s triumph as a ‘strong win’ and a ‘gritty performance’ when speaking to DFC TV. The Dartford boss praised the way his side adapted to the conditions throughout the afternoon, he explained: “A win is a win, you get three points. It was just one of those games where you just had to get through it basically”.

Dartford’s last home match against St Albans City courtesy of DFV TV

Dartford had to contend with the injury to left back Craig Braham-Barrett, but the versatility of the squad certainly helped. Jordan Wynter slipped into the full back position with David Ijaha coming into the holding midfield role. When the Darts chased a winner, Charlie Sheringham was able to come on as the side moved to a 4-3-3 formation. King commented: “With all that going on, they have done brilliantly to come away with a clean sheet and three points against a good side”.

Once again former players could feature against their previous club. Josh Hill and Luke Allen have made just three substitute appearances between them this season and both spent time at St Albans City. In the other camp, Tom Bender and Luke Warner-Eley return to Princes Park with the Saints. Bender played 16 times for the Darts, scored against Dartford in November 2016 and netted an own goal a year later.

Luke Warner-Eley made his Dartford debut against the Saints under Adam Flanagan and Jamie Coyle and went on to make six appearances, the defender featured in the 1-1 draw between the two sides at Princes Park last season. Saints top scorer last season, Joe Iaciofano scored for the visitors, but Luke Wanadio equalised in the second half. In the away fixture Dartford ended a four match losing streak at Clarence Park with a 2-1 victory, goals from Darren McQueen and Liam Nash.

St Albans City struggled last term and were in twentieth place when the season stopped. Like Dartford they lost their top scorer in the summer, and whilst the Darts have been able to spread their goalscorers out around the squad, the Saints have Shaun Jeffers top of their leaderboard with five. Ian Allinson has recruited well this term and results have shown an upturn in form.

A week ago, the Saints came from behind at Clarence Park to beat Braintree Town 2-1, their third consecutive win following home victories over Chippenham Town and Ebbsfleet United. On the opening day of the campaign they also won on their own patch, but their only away fixture in the National South ended in a 1-1 draw against Concord Rangers.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 9 / St Albans City wins: 5 / Draws: 5

Current League Form

Dartford
(WWLWWW)
St Albans City
(WWWDW)
Maidstone UnitedA2-0Braintree TownH2-1
Hemel Hempstead TownA3-1Chippenham TownH3-0
Dorking WanderersH2-3Ebbsfleet UnitedH3-2
Havant &WaterloovileH2-1Concord RangersA1-1
Chippenham TownA2-1Hampton & RichmondH1-0
Bath CityH1-0

Last Six Meetings

07.03.2020St Albans City1Dartford2
06.08.2019Dartford1St Albans City1
12.01.2019Dartford3St Albans City2
01.09.2018St Albans City2Dartford0
03.02.2018St Albans City4Dartford0
28.10.2017Dartford2St Albans City1

Stats

Dartford are unbeaten in their last three home matches against St Albans City (W2, D1)

The Darts have lost just once at home against the Saints in normal time, which was in November 2016 (W5, D4)

St Albans City have scored in each of their last nine games against the Darts and have kept five clean sheets in those matches.

Tom Bonner is the second highest scorer at the club (17) one ahead of Elliott Romain (16). Charlie Sheringham is now on 51 career goals for the Darts.

On This Day

Dartford’s academy team may have bowed out of the F.A Youth Cup first round this year against Metropolitan Police, but the senior team beat the Met in front of the Match of the Day cameras in 1984. Dartford won the first round tie 3-0 with now Braintree Town boss George Borg scoring a fine goal. The Darts went out at the next round against AFC Bournemouth, who subsequently lost to Manchester United in the next round, a year after the Cherries famously shocked the Red Devils.

Mark Arber played the majority of the match with a fractured cheekbone in Dartford’s last home game on this day. Elliot Bradbrook twice put the Darts ahead against Southport in the National League eight years ago, but the visitors equalised through Steve Akrigg and in the last minute, Karl Ledsham. Two years ago, Charlie Sheringham scored the only goal of the game as Dartford beat Hampton and Richmond Borough at the Beveree.

Maidstone United v Dartford

Top of the table is up for grabs in Dartford’s first Kent derby of the season when they visit Maidstone United on Saturday.

Steve King’s side are leading the way in the National South and another victory will keep Dartford at the summit. Defeat could see their local rivals replace them depending on other results in the division.

There is plenty of history between the two clubs including the triple header last season. The Darts put on a late show in the league almost a year to the day, coming from two down to snatch a draw. Quick fire second half goals from Danny Wishart and Ibby Akanbi had Maidstone United in charge at Princes Park right up until the closing stages. Tom Bonner bundled in a goal with four minutes to go and in the final minute Darren McQueen equalised.

Video highlights can be found on DFCTV

A week later, the pair were at it again but this time in the F.A Trophy third qualifying round, where they played out the same score. Elliott Romain scored twice against his old side cancelling out strikes from Wishart and Justin Amaluzor. The replay days afterwards was another tight contest and it was Iffy Allen who scored the only goal of the game, to send the Stones into the next round.  

Sick of the sight of each other, Dartford and Maidstone United were also paired up in the Kent Senior Cup second round in January. This time it was the Darts who progressed 1-0 with a Ky Marsh-Brown winner. Dartford went on to make the final, which is yet to be played.

Elliott Romain got off the mark on Tuesday night in Dartford’s 3-1 win over Hemel Hempstead Town. The striker played 37 times for Maidstone United scoring just four goals. Another former Stone, Jordan Wynter returned to the starting line up replacing Jazzi Barnum-Bobb. Wynter only made eight appearances at Maidstone United before joining the Darts. Ky Marsh-Brown and Connor Essam were the only other changes as Ronnie Vint and David Ijaha missed out.

Dartford bounced back from their 3-2 home defeat to Dorking Wanderers by moving to the top of the table. Connor Essam made his first start this season against his former club and opened the scoring, the central defender was pivotal in defence and could have ended up with a hat-trick. Jack Jebb also made an impact providing the set piece for Essam to head home and his assist set up the second, which went down as an own goal. Romain netted his first of the campaign before the break and in the second half, BJ Christie grabbed a consolation for Hemel Hempstead Town.

King spoke to DFC TV after the game and was delighted with his side’s first half performance, he said: “After the first ten minutes we grew into the game and were in total control. It’s as good as half I have seen from the lads for a long, long time”. Dartford’s boss called up Essam and highlighted his display as outstanding. With a strong squad King believes the defender “grabbed his opportunity with both hands”.

The result at Hemel Hempstead Town shows more improvements are being made. After a solid start built around a tight defence, the Darts are starting to be rewarded at the other end of the field, King commented: “Slowly we’re getting better, the goals are now coming in slowly and the goal difference is building up”.

Maidstone United have only suffered one league setback this term and are the top scorers in the division. The Stones last outing was a 3-2 victory at Slough Town with goals from Scott Rendell and George Porter, the pair are the club’s joint top scorer with three this season. They won by an even bigger margin in their last match at the Gallagher Stadium, thrashing F.A Trophy finalists Concord Rangers 6-0, putting their only defeat of the campaign to Chelmsford City behind them.

Maidstone United’s other victories include a 2-1 triumph in the Kent derby with Welling United and a 4-1 win against Hemel Hempstead Town. The Stones showed a never say die attitude in their fixture against Havant and Waterlooville last month scoring two injury time goals to draw from two down.

A Kent derby is always a difficult test and King points out this weekend and Tuesday night against St Albans City will be no different, he stated: “Maidstone United are doing really well and have had a really good start to the season, so it’s another really tough game. Then we’ve got St Albans who have also had a really good start, yet another top five side. It seems like we’re always playing a top five side at the moment”.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 45 / Maidstone United wins: 45 / Draws: 19

Current League Form

Dartford
(WLWWWD)
Maidstone United
(WWLWDW)
Hemel Hempstead TownA3-1Slough TownA3-2
Dorking WanderersH2-3Concord RangersH6-0
Havant &WaterloovileH2-1Chelmsford CityA0-1
Chippenham TownA2-1Hemel Hempstead TownH4-1
Bath CityH1-0Havant & WaterloovilleA2-2
Hampton & RichmondA0-0Welling UnitedH2-1

Last Six Meetings

21.01.2020Maidstone United0Dartford1
26.11.2019Dartford0Maidstone United1
23.11.2019Maidstone United2Dartford2
16.11.2019Dartford2Maidstone United2
22.01.2019Dartford1Maidstone United1
09.04.2016Maidstone United1Dartford2

Stats

Dartford are unbeaten in seven league matches against Maidstone United (W5, D2).

In all competitions the Darts are unbeaten in five away games against the Stones (W4, D1)

Dartford have scored two or more goals in four consecutive league games for the first time since January.

Tom Bonner could make his 350th appearance for the Darts (347 starts and 2 substitute appearances). Josh Hill is currently on 49 games (45 starts and 2 appearances as substitute).

On This Day

It’s five years to the day that Dartford drew 1-1 with Maidstone United at Princes Park. Elliot Bradbrook scored a late equaliser against his old club even though his goal was ruled out at first. Future signing Alex Flisher had given the Stones the lead, but Dartford’s leveller was well deserved after hitting the woodwork three times during the match. Tony Sitford’s overhead kick, two minutes from time, earned Dartford a F.A Cup first round replay against Division Four side Aldershot, the Darts lost the replay 1-0. The last away fixture on this day was in 1989 when Dartford beat Wealdstone 4-0 in the Southern League Cup second round. The second leg ended 5-0 to secure a 9-0 aggregate win.

Hemel Hempstead Town v Dartford

Dartford are in action on Tuesday night hoping to start a new unbeaten run when they travel to Hemel Hempstead Town.

The Darts tasted their first defeat of the season on the weekend and their first in the league since February. Hosting a strong Dorking Wanderers side, Dartford were haunted by their former striker Jason Prior once again. The Darts fell to a 3-2 loss in which they pegged the visitors back twice.

Two former Havant and Waterlooville players netted for Dorking Wanderers with Wes Fogden opening the scoring. Jacob Berkeley-Agyepong equalised only for Prior to add another goal to his career tally against Dartford. Jack Jebb levelled for the hosts with a free-kick and with 15 minutes to go Matthew Briggs won it for Wanderers. It had been almost a year since the Darts last conceded three under Steve King.

King felt the Darts “were the better side”, but lacked the finishing touch, he spoke to Dartford FC TV and said: “If there is only one criticism on us, for all the good approach play we didn’t work the goalkeeper enough. We had the majority of the game, we penned them back in their own half and they couldn’t get out”.

Despite defeat it has still been a decent start to the season for Dartford, their best for 11 years when they went on to claim the Isthmian Premier League crown. King’s side will be determined to “bounce back” and begin another unbeaten run to extend their good record over Hemel Hempstead Town.

However, the Dartford boss doesn’t expect life to be easy on Tuesday night, he commented: “It will be a different test and a tough test as well now because they went away to Bath and won 2-1. I know Bath are not having the greatest of times right now, but it’s very hard to go away and win at Bath”, he added: “They’ve obviously got capabilities within their group and I’ve seen that when I went to watch them at Billericay Town, even though they lost it wasn’t a 4-1 game. So we need to get back on it and I’m sure we will”.

Craig Braham-Barrett has started every game this season for the Darts and another start will see the full-back face his former club. The defender was at Vauxhall Road last season with Connor Essam, making 20 appearances for the Tudors, whilst Essam made 33 appearances. Striker, Charlie Sheringham has also represented Hemel Hempstead Town in his past, playing a total of 31 games and scoring 15 goals in 2017 and 2018.

Dartford made just one change in their defeat against Dorking Wanderers due to Moussa Bakayoko’s injury. Whilst Luke Allen returned to action after almost a year without competitive action for the club. Jordan Wynter and Ky Marsh-Brown were also named on the bench after recovering from injury. King hinted some changes to the team will be needed considering the Darts also have their first Kent derby of the campaign coming up, on Saturday against second place Maidstone United.

Hemel Hempstead Town appointed Lee Bircham as manager in July after an impressive season with Berkhamsted, in the Southern League Division One Central. Guiding the Comrades to the top of the table, they held a one-point lead with ten games remaining before the campaign was halted.

The new boss is still searching for the right formula having made nineteen changes in his team selection over the six league games so far. The campaign started with a narrow 1-0 loss to Slough Town, but since then Hemel Hempstead Town have been fragile in defence. Three 4-1 defeats to Eastbourne Borough, Maidstone United and Billericay Town and their first win of the season, which was 4-3 over Braintree Town, has seen the Hertfordshire side leak goals.

After the Tudors third straight reverse, Bircham delved into the loan market to bring in Queens Park Rangers pair, Stephen Duke-McKenna and Nathan Carlyle, who spent some time out on loan at Concord Rangers recently. Former, Queens Park Rangers midfielder Chris Paul was also added to the squad from Havant and Waterlooville. The trio made their league debuts in Hemel Hempstead Town’s National South win at Braintree Town.

On Saturday, they travelled to Bath City and were much tighter at the back conceding just once and went on to record their second victory. The Tudors beat the Romans 2-1 to climb up to twelfth with Reggie Young winning a penalty and scoring the decisive goal. Matt Bateman equalised from the spot after Bath City’s Donovan Wilson gave the hosts the lead, then Young claimed the winner with ten minutes to go.

Last season, Dartford only played Hemel Hempstead Town once which ended in a 1-1 draw at Princes Park. Norman Wabo cancelled out Sam Ashford’s goal and Adam Cunnington missed a penalty. The Darts last visit to Vauxhall Road was in March 2019 and the game only came to life in the closing ten minutes. Phil Roberts scored a brace either side of Jordan Parkes’ penalty in a 2-1 victory.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 5 / Hemel Hempstead Town wins: 1 / Draws: 4

Current League Form

Dartford
(LWWWDW)
Hemel Hempstead Town
(WLWLLL)
Dorking WanderersH2-3Bath CityA2-1
Havant &WaterloovileH2-1Billericay TownH1-4
Chippenham TownA2-1Braintree TownA4-3
Bath CityH1-0Maidstone UnitedA1-4
Hampton & RichmondA0-0Eastbourne BoroughH1-4
Chelmsford CityH1-0Slough TownA0-1

Last six Meetings

31.08.2019Dartford1Hemel Hempstead Town1
05.03.2019Hemel Hempstead Town1Dartford2
11.08.2018Dartford0Hemel Hempstead Town0
17.03.2018Dartford3Hemel Hempstead Town2
26.08.2017Hemel Hempstead Town0Dartford3
01.04.2017Hemel Hempstead Town2Dartford2

Stats

Dartford are unbeaten in eight matches against Hemel Hempstead Town (W4, D4).

The Darts have won in their last two visits at Vauxhall Road.

Hemel Hempstead Town’s only win over the Darts came on the first day of the 2015/2016 season.

On This Day

Tom Bonner scored the second goal on a famous day for the Darts eight years ago. Dartford went to Kenilworth Road and beat Luton Town 2-0, Lee Noble netted the opener. In ten of the last 12 games on this day Dartford have scored two goals, but their last victory before 2012 was 39 years earlier. A third consecutive 2-0 win on 10 November was completed in a 1981 Kent Senior Cup tie against Welling United, in 1979 the Darts defeated Bognor Regis Town and in 1973 they beat Barnet. Between the Welling United and Luton Town triumphs, Dartford lost three and drew two.

Dartford v Dorking Wanderers

Dartford remain top of the National South after victory last weekend and a win at home to Dorking Wanderers on Saturday will keep them at the summit.

Jack Barham, the two-goal hero against Havant and Waterlooville will face his former club where he scored seven times in his six-month spell. The striker opened his Dartford goalscoring account with a well taken penalty and a glancing header to earn his side a 2-1 win over the Hawks, one of the title favourites.

Speaking to www.kentonline.co.uk after the match Barham feels the Darts are the ‘perfect club’ for him. The 24-year-old who has worked with manager Steve King at Welling United was pleased to get his first goals for Dartford, he said: “I’m delighted to get off the mark and now I can focus on kicking on with my season and picking up results as well”, he added: “I’m really enjoying it. I’m getting loads of chances, the set-up is fantastic and perfect for me. I’ve got a great team behind me”.

Highlights courtesy of DFCTV

Unbeaten in the National South with four wins from five, manager King is impressed with the attitude of the squad and knows they are capable of better performances, he told DFC TV: “When I looked at the fixtures the first six were like a baptism of fire. We’re not playing fantastic but we’re playing good in spells. To get 13 out of 15 points against the teams we’ve played is a very good start considering we could have had the hangover from the playoff final defeat and feel sorry for ourselves, but we have not”. Barham echoes his manager’s comments adding: “I know we’re going to be up there challenging for the title. The aim is to get promotion again”.

Standing in Dartford’s way on Saturday will be Dorking Wanderers who impressed in their first campaign in the National South last season. Finishing seventh to reach the playoffs, the Wanderers also made the last 16 of the F.A Trophy upsetting Stockport County on the way. This season began with the Surrey side making a perfect start in their first three games taking maximum points and scoring ten goals. An opening day 3-0 win at Eastbourne Borough was followed up with a 3-1 home victory over Slough Town and a comprehensive 4-0 triumph away at Braintree Town.

Last weekend, Marc White’s side lost to Dartford’s closest competitors Hungerford Town. The 2-0 defeat leaves Dorking Wanderers where they finished last season, they and are now four points behind the Darts with a game in hand. Over the summer, White introduced some experience to the squad with the arrival of former Gillingham midfielder Barry Fuller as well as Wes Fogden, Alfie Rutherford, Ed Harris who were all part of the Havant and Waterlooville squad who pipped Dartford to the National South title in 2018 to claim back to back promotions.

Former players: Jack Barham and Jason Prior face their previous clubs

Returning to Princes Park eleven years to the day since a hat-trick against the Darts, will be former Dartford striker Jason Prior. Whilst he managed just two goals in 24 appearances for Dartford in both his spells with the club, he has caused more problems as an opponent. Before joining the Darts, he netted a hat-trick for Bognor Regis Town at Princes Park, he scored the last-minute title clinching goal for Havant and Waterlooville and a penalty for the Wanderers last season also at Princes Park. He has started this season with three league goals in four games.

If the last two meetings are anything to go by then a feast of goals await. The two sides shared 12 goals in this fixture last term with the away side winning on both occasions. Dorking Wanderers won 4-3 in September and the Darts won the reverse match 3-2 in January this year. With Tony Burman in temporary charge after the departure of Adam Flanagan and Jamie Coyle four days before kick-off, the Darts were narrowly beaten at Princes Park. Dorking’s Niall McManus scored from long range before Ben Greenhalgh scored twice. The game was level once more when Prior netted from the spot in first half stoppage time. Charlie Sheringham put the Darts in front, but two late goals from Giuseppe Sole and James McShane either side of Lee Noble’s red card sealed the win for the visitors.

The meeting in January was just as dramatic with Darren McQueen scoring a last-minute winner. Dartford threw away a two-goal lead created by McQueen’s penalty and Elliot Romain’s strike. Dorking Wanderers pegged Dartford back when Jimmy Muitt then Luke Moore scored. McQueen popped up with the decisive goal at the end to claim three points for the Darts.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 1 / Dorking Wanderers wins: 1 / Draws: 0

Current League Form

Dartford
(WWWDW)
Dorking Wanderers
(LWWW)
Havant &WaterloovileH2-1Hungerford TownA0-2
Chippenham TownA2-1Braintree TownA4-0
Bath CityH1-0Slough TownH3-1
Hampton & RichmondA0-0Eastbourne BoroughA3-0
Chelmsford CityH1-0

Previous Meetings

04.01.2020Dorking Wanderers2Dartford3
07.09.2019Dartford3Dorking Wanderers4

Stats

Dartford are unbeaten in nine National South matches stretching back to 22 February (W7, D2).

The Darts have made their best start to a league campaign since winning the Isthmian Premier League in 2009/2010, when they also won four and drew one of their opening five fixtures.

Josh Hill is one game away from making his 50th Dartford appearance (45 starts and 4 substitute appearances).

On This Day

Jason Prior scored a Princes Park hat-trick for Bognor Regis Town in an entertaining 3-3 draw. The Darts went on to win the Isthmian Premier League, whist Bognor Regis Town were relegated, making Prior’s performance more remarkable. Danny Harris and Billy Burgess scored for Dartford that day with Harris grabbing a brace. On this day Dartford have only lost once at home and that was in 1936 against Margate in the Southern League Midweek Section. In total they have won 6, drew 2 and lost 1 at home on 7 November, the most recent victory was back in 1987 against Redditch United, the Southern Premier League fixture ending 3-2. In 1981, the Darts beat Frickley Athletic 1-0 in the Alliance League and in 1964 they triumphed over Cheltenham Town 2-0, also in the Southern Premier League. Other results at home on this day include a 0-0 friendly draw with Fifth Northern Fusiliers (1903), a 3-0 Southern League Division Two win over Uxbridge (1896) and a 7-1 victory in a friendly against Thorburn Rovers (1891).

Dartford v Havant and Waterlooville

Two of the National South favourites go head to head at Princes Park this weekend as league leaders Dartford host Havant and Waterlooville.

The Darts climbed to the top of the table on Tuesday night, but know this weekend’s visitors will be a stern test. Both sides have broken each other’s hearts in recent times with the Hawks claiming the National South title on the final day of the 2017/2018 campaign and the Darts winning the playoff semi-final clash in July.

Yet it’s Dartford who have had the upper hand in this fixture going eight unbeaten against the Hampshire side. Darren McQueen’s brace three months ago completed a 2-1 victory, giving Steve King’s side a shot at the promotion final. Jonah Ayunga scored for Havant and Waterlooville, who shared the golden boot last term with McQueen, both players have since moved on to a higher level.

Playoff showdown: Dartford in action against Havant and Waterlooville in July

It’s been over a year since the last league meeting between the two clubs, which ended in a 1-1 draw under the stewardship of Adam Flanagan and Jamie Coyle. The cliché of a game of two halves rang true for this contest as the Darts had the better of the first period, taking the lead when Adam Cunnington headed Ben Greenhalgh’s cross for the lead. Dartford were put under pressure in the second half and it finally took its toll just past the hour when Alfie Rutherford equalised. The reverse fixture was scheduled to be the next match of the 2019/2020 season, only for the campaign to be cut short.

On Tuesday night Dartford kept their unbeaten league start intact to move to the top of the National South. Prior kick off the Darts announced a new signing welcoming Moussa Bakayoko into the squad. Replacing Elliott Romain in the starting line up, the Ivorian took just nine minutes to make his mark scoring against Chippenham Town on his debut. The 23-year-old former Derry City forward, was the only change to the eleven that started in the 1-0 win against Bath City. The hosts equalised through Joe Hanks, becoming the first to score against Dartford in the league this season after 291 minutes of football. In the closing stages captain Tom Bonner popped up with the winner in the 82nd minute.

Last weekend, Havant and Waterlooville continued their unbeaten start reaching the first round of the F.A Cup for the first time since 2014. Tommy Wright’s strike in the top corner, Roarie Deacon’s low driven effort and Theo Widdrington’s injury time goal secured a 3-0 victory over Bath City. The Hampshire side will take on Cray Valley Paper Mills, whose assistant boss is former Dartford favourite Tommy Osbourne. Dartford women’s team coach, Connor Dymond is also in the Cray Valley Paper Mills side, he scored in the last round as the Millers shocked Maidenhead United.

As well as three F.A Cup victories against Horsham, Chatham Town and Bath City, the Hawks have only played two league games so far. Their season’s opener was delayed with the away game at Dulwich Hamlet postponed.

Havant and Waterlooville finally kicked off their National South campaign just three weeks ago beginning with a 2-2 draw at home to Maidstone United. Manager, Paul Doswell identified his team’s home form needed improving, going as far as suggesting it cost them promotion last season. Once again, they failed to take all three points at Westleigh Park conceding a two-goal lead in second half injury time. New signing and joint top scorer in the National South last time out, Joe Iaciofano opened his Havant and Waterlooville account before adding his second. In the closing stages, the Stones scored twice in stoppage time courtesy of George Porter and Joe Ellul.

Unbeaten in the league on the road since April 2019, the Hawks grabbed their first win of the season at Billericay Town. This time late goals from Doswell’s side changed the outcome of the match with the hosts taking the lead just before half-time through Josh Hutchinson. With ten minutes remaining Sam Magri nodded Havant and Waterlooville level, then in stoppage time Wright found a winner.

Havant and Waterlooville have had a settled squad so far this term with Doswell only making two changes to the starting eleven all season. Iaciofano is already on four goals in all competitions and scored against the Darts for St Albans City last term. He is already striking up a productive partnership with Deacon and Wright, the trio are responsible for 11 of the 13 goals the Hawks have scored in all competitions.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 6 / Havant & Waterlooville wins: 3 / Draws: 4

Current League Form

Dartford (WWDW) Havant & Waterlooville(WD)
Chippenham TownA2-1Billericay TownA2-1
Bath CityH1-0Maidstone UnitedH2-2
Hampton & RichmondA0-0
Chelmsford CityH1-0

Previous Six Meetings

25.07.2020Havant & Waterlooville1Dartford2
10.08.2019Dartford1Havant & Waterlooville1
13.01.2018Dartford1Havant & Waterlooville0
12.08.2017Havant & Waterlooville0Dartford0
19.03.2016Havant & Waterlooville0Dartford2
05.12.2015Dartford4Havant & Waterlooville2

Stats

Dartford are unbeaten in eight matches against Havant and Waterlooville (W6, D2).

The Darts have not lost at home to the Hawks for 20 years (W3, D2), when the Hampshire side won a F.A Cup third qualifying round fixture 4-0.

Dartford have kept three clean sheets out of the last five meetings.

Six of Dartford’s last eight games on Halloween have ended 2-1, Dartford winning four by that scoreline.

On This Day

Adam Flanagan made his 100th start for the Darts in a 3-0 F.A Trophy win against Chipstead Town. Jamie Day, Danny Harris and Ryan Hayes all found the back of the net in the second qualifying round eleven years ago. The Darts had beaten their opponents 6-1 in the F.A Cup just seven weeks earlier. Dartford went out of the F.A Cup in 1990 at the final qualifying stage when they lost 2-1 to Boston United, the year before they beat Baldock Town by the same score in a Southern League Cup fixture. Dartford’s last league game on this day came in 1981 when they were beaten by Trowbridge Town 2-1 in the Alliance Premier League. It’s been 50 years since the Darts won a league game on this day when they beat Wimbledon 2-1 in the Southern Premier League.

Chippenham Town v Dartford

Dartford could equal a 34-year-old record and go top of the table when they play their rearranged fixture against Chippenham Town on Tuesday night.

The Darts have yet to concede a goal during their unbeaten start to the National South campaign. A fourth consecutive clean sheet will match the post-war record they set in 1986, when they kept four clean sheets in a row at the start of a league season. As an extra incentive, victory will put the Darts top of the National South.

However, manager Steve King expects a tough time at Hardenhuish Park where they take on Chippenham Town. In his interview with Dartford F.C on Twitter, he explained: “They are one of those sides who are very organised, they are very good a set pieces and they are a good side. They have started well, they recently beat Ebbsfleet in the F.A Cup, they beat Dulwich away as well, they have got the capabilities. It’s known in the non-league circle that it’s a tough place to go to get something, you must earn your points there whatever you get”.

Defender Ronnie Vint added: “It’s a tough place to go, you’ve got to play the conditions and the pitch there is on a bit of a hill. We go there confident, in great form and we’re looking forward to it”.

In front of goal Dartford have only managed to score twice in their last five competitive outings stretching back to the playoff final defeat. A pair of 1-0 victories over Chelmsford City and Bath City sandwiching a 0-0 draw with Hampton and Richmond Borough sees the Darts in seventh place before Tuesday night’s kick off.

Steve King’s side will be hoping to find their goalscoring form they had when they last visited the Bluebirds in February. The Darts hit the hosts with five first half goals to win 5-1. Darren McQueen sent Will Puddy the wrong way from the penalty spot, then set up Liam Nash to roll the ball home for a second. Callum Gunner got the hosts back in the game, but the Darts stretched their lead as Amrit Bansal-McNulty finished from an audacious angle. Tom Bonner scored from close range before McQueen netted another penalty. The reverse fixture a year ago, was Steve King’s first league match in charge at the Darts and a 1-1 draw was secured with a late Josh Hill strike. 

Video courtesy of BlueArmy TV

In Dartford’s last league game, they had to handle an unusual situation at home to Bath City. An injury to the assistant referee delayed the second half for 35 minutes. The Darts coped fine and a Noor Husin strike after the restart was enough to secure a second win of the season. Steve King summed up the match, he commented: “I felt we were a lot better, especially the first half. The game was split into two sections in the second half, we came out very good for twenty minutes then they had a twenty-minute spell right at the end. They were a dangerous side and played decent football, we could have taken our chances earlier to make it more comfortable”.

The only change to the starting eleven saw Jack Jebb rewarded with his first start of the season. The midfielder managed most of the game as he continues to recover from injury. Steve King reported no major injury concerns ahead of the Chippenham Town match, but did announce the departure of Kairo Mitchell.

It’s been over a week since Dartford’s last competitive game. Having been knocked out of the F.A Cup they were left without a league fixture on the weekend. Instead they hosted Lewes in a friendly to keep King’s healthy squad involved and match fit. King gave opportunities to players that haven’t racked up many minutes so far this season, including Luke Allen who scored the only goal of the game. Two academy players Sam Oduado and Brandon Davey also made an appearance from off the bench.

Chippenham Town missed out on making the F.A Cup first round with a last minute defeat to F.A Trophy finalists Concord Rangers. The Bluebirds had won their previous two rounds on penalties beating Poole Town and Ebbsfleet United. This time the cup tie didn’t make it to spot kicks as a winning goal eight minutes into injury time knocked the Bluebirds out. Concord Rangers took the lead through Temi Babalola before Ross Stearn equalised, but Danny Green grabbed a winner for the Beachboys.

In the National South, Mike Cook’s side have taken six points from nine. After losing their first game 3-0 at revitalised Hungerford Town they bounced back with a 1-0 win against Braintree Town and a 2-0 victory at Dulwich Hamlet. In the summer, the Bluebirds added some quality with the likes of Bradley Ash from Hereford and recently former Bath City forward Ryan Brunt, who will link up with other former Romans, Stearn and Adam Mann if fit from a thigh strain. Other summer signings, Danny Greenslade is recovering from injury, but Marlon Jackson will be out for about a month.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 3 / Chippenham Town wins: 1 / Draws: 2

Current League Form

Dartford (WDW) Chippenham Town (WWL)
Bath CityH1-0Dulwich HamletA2-0
Hampton & RichmondA0-0Braintree TownH1-0
Chelmsford CityH1-0Hungerford TownA0-3

Previous Six Meetings

01.02.2020Chippenham Town1Dartford5
26.10.2019Dartford1Chippenham Town1
13.04.2019Dartford0Chippenham Town1
13.10.2018Chippenham Town1Dartford2
20.01.2018Chippenham Town2Dartford2
09.09.2017Dartford3Chippenham Town0

Stats

Dartford’s club record of five consecutive clean sheets at the start of a league season was set in 1909.

There has been no goals scored in normal time in Dartford’s last two away games (Weymouth in the playoff final and Hampton and Richmond Borough). The last time that happened was in April 2009, when the Darts drew 0-0 with Wealdstone then Boreham Wood.

A third consecutive goalless draw away from home will make it a club record.

On This Day

Dartford won the Isthmian Division One North in 2007/2008 and then the Isthmian Premier two years later, in both season’s they won on 27 October. The Darts beat Potters Bar Town 13 years ago with Jay May, Brendon Cass, Junior Kadi and Tom Bradbrook scoring in a 4-0 win. Two years later four different scorers found the net again this time in a 4-1 triumph over Ashford Town (Middlesex) goals from Lee Noble, Ryan Hayes, Danny Harris and Jay May. The Darts last game on this day ended in defeat, Kudus Oyenuga scoring a consolation in a 3-1 loss at Truro City. Back in 1984, Dartford booked a place in the F.A Cup first round with a 3-1 victory against Grays Athletic, avenging a cup defeat to the Essex club four years earlier.

Dartford v Bath City

Unbeaten in the National South, Dartford will be determined to keep their current run going this weekend when they host promotion hopefuls Bath City.

The Darts opened their league campaign with a 1-0 victory over Chelmsford City followed by a goalless draw at Hampton and Richmond Borough. Bath City tasted an opening day defeat at Oxford City but recorded their first league win last weekend against Billericay Town. Both teams reached the playoffs last term with the Darts falling short in the final and the Romans getting knocked out in the eliminator round.

Defensively, Dartford have been perfect in the league with two clean sheets and if it wasn’t for a controversial penalty in the F.A Cup then their defence wouldn’t have been breached at all this season. However, it hasn’t quite clicked in attack yet with Ky Marsh-Brown the only goalscorer for Steve King’s side, his header on the opening day was enough to earn all three points against Chelmsford City. That has been Dartford’s only goal in their last four competitive games stretching back to the Playoff Final defeat. At the other end only Slough Town and Havant and Waterlooville have netted against the Darts in the last seven competitive matches.

Defensive duo: Tom Bonner and Ronnie Vint kept the Beavers at bay

Dartford’s first away game of the campaign last weekend ended 0-0 at Hampton and Richmond Borough in a game that saw the defences on top. Tom Bonner and Ronnie Vint remaining solid in the centre as they continue to strike up a reliable partnership at the back. Making his debut, Jack Barham replaced Ricky Modeste in the only change to the starting eleven. After the game the striker spoke to DFCTV and said: “We didn’t play to our maximum but coming away with a point is never bad. If we know that really is the minimum of what we can offer, then we have a good chance this year”. Having joined in the summer and after nursing an injury, Barham is confident good times are on their way, he explained: “It’s going to take me a couple of weeks to get my fitness back. I felt like jelly in the second half especially after about 60 minutes, but I can see myself scoring lots of goals. I’m excited now to show everyone what I can do”.

This fixture was supposed to be the next home game in the 2019/2020 league schedule. However, the campaign was halted and so the last time the Darts hosted Bath City was in February 2019. Dartford ended the Romans’ unbeaten run of nine games that day with some stunning goals. Lee Noble curled his shot from outside the box into the top corner, Charlie Sheringham nodded home Ryan Hayes’ pinpoint cross and Phil Roberts cut inside to unleash another curling strike, from outside the box, into the bottom corner.

For more match highlights visit Dartford FC TV

Last season the score was reversed putting an end to Dartford’s seven consecutive victories against Bath City.  Three first half goals, one from Tom Smith and a brace from Andy Watkins handed the Romans three points at Twerton Park inside the first 35 minutes. To sum up Dartford’s day, Elliott Romain missed a penalty in one of very few defeats manager Steve King has suffered since his appointment in October last year.

This season, in the National South, Bath City were beaten 2-0 on the first day of the season against Oxford City. Defeat came just days after leaving it late in the F.A Cup to overcome Winchester City. The Romans were given a scare by the Southern Division One South side needing to come from behind. Tommy Conway scored a brace, his first coming just two minutes into his debut before Winchester City took a 2-1 half-time lead. The on-loan striker from Bristol City equalised and a late deflected Tom Richards strike earned Bath City a third qualifying round tie against Dartford’s conquerors Slough Town. After the reverse at Oxford City, Conway was scoring again, grabbing another Twerton Park brace in their 2-0 victory over Billericay Town, both goals assisted by Freddie Hinds on his second debut for the Romans, also joining on loan from Bristol City.

Linking Up: Bristol City pair Tommy Conway and Freddie Hinds in action for Bath City

Hinds turned from provider into a goalscorer on Tuesday night scoring the winning goal to knock Slough Town out of the F.A Cup. An evenly contested tie saw the Romans defence stand strong with several decent saves from goalkeeper Ryan Clarke. Hinds early second half goal was enough to see Bath City into the fourth qualifying round.

Bath City’s ties with Bristol continued this week with the signing of Lucas Tomlinson on loan from Bristol Rovers. Manager, Jerry Gill already has City players Conway and James Taylor in his squad. Over the summer keeping top scorer Tom Smith was imperative, he has featured in every game so far. Out of the new signings Freddie Grant, Ryan Harley and Callum Evans have earned first team places.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 32 / Bath City wins: 39 / Draws: 19

Previous Six Meetings

30.11.2019Bath City3Dartford0
09.02.2019Dartford3Bath City0
04.08.2018Bath City 1Dartford2
21.04.2018Dartford2Bath City0
24.10.2017Bath City1Dartford2
04.03.2017Dartford2Bath City0

Stats

Dartford have won their last four homes games against Bath City going back to 2016

The Darts last lost to Bath City at home in April 1990, which was the only defeat in the last six home games against the Romans (W5 L1)

Dartford have kept three consecutive clean sheets against Bath City at Princes Park. The Romans last scoring in 2016 when the Darts won 4-1.

On This Day

Allan Tait scored the winning goal eleven years ago against Isthmian Division One North side Sittingbourne. The 1-0 victory in the F.A Trophy first qualifying round was a stern test for the Darts who went on to claim the Isthmian Premier League crown that season. Almost eleven years on, the two sides met in a friendly (on Monday night) with Dartford winning 5-2. Five years ago, at Princes Park, Ryan Hayes netted a superb last-minute equaliser in a 2-2 draw with Hemel Hempstead Town. The Darts were two down at half-time until Danny Harris then Hayes helped the home side earn a point. It is also the 50th anniversary of Dartford’s 7-0 F.A Cup win against Harrow Borough, but the biggest win on this day was 18-0 in 1891 against Old Wilkinson.