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Dartford v Welling United

Steve King once again comes face to face with his former club as Dartford open the New Year against local rivals Welling United.

The two sides met on Boxing Day with the Darts coming out on top by beating the Wings 3-0 at Park View Road. Darren McQueen scored a brace with his first coming from the penalty spot, Elliot Romain also found the net to claim bragging rights for King’s men. In a repeat of the Boxing Day scoreline, Dartford defeated Tonbridge Angels on the weekend with the same pair scoring. This time McQueen opened the scoring and Romain fired in a long range effort. There was still time for Charlie Sheringham to come off the bench to score and Josh Hill to be sent off in the closing stages.

King introduced new loan signing Jacob Berkeley-Agyepong having signed from Aldershot Town. The 22-year-old winger has made 13 appearances for the Shots, scoring 3 times. The only other change was in defence where Josh Hill replaced Tom Bonner, whilst Sanchez Ming made way for Berkeley-Agyepong. The Dartford b oss was happy with the midfielder’s debut, he told kentonline.co.uk: “You can see little bits of quality, (with his) finesse on the ball and the way he manipulates the ball”, he added: “Bearing in mind he has been out for two weeks at Aldershot with concussion, so he hasn’t played for three weeks and he’s coming into a league where it’s a little bit quicker than the National League – it’s up, down, up, down – he’s another who will grow. But he brings little bits of quality and left-footed (players) always bring a bit of balance”.

Since arriving at the Darts, King has increased competition for places in the starting eleven and after the Tonbridge Angels win he praised goalkeeper Alhaji Sesay, who has taken advantage of Mark Smith’s injury to get an opportunity between the sticks. Overall, King was delighted with Saturday’s result and felt the game should have been wrapped up in the first half, he commented: “That’s as dominant as we have been and we should have gone in 2-0 or 3-0 up at least. But we didn’t capitalise on all our good play and, at that time, then you leave yourself open”, he continued: “But for me, we were so dominant that the game should have been over at half-time”.

Dartford’s boss came so close to guiding the Wings back to the National League last term reaching the Playoff final. Now King will be up against his old team for the second time over the festive season after the Boxing Day clash at Park View Road. It will be the third consecutive year that the Darts have hosted Welling United on New Year’s Day and the previous two meetings ended victorious.

Bragging rights were shared last season when the home side won on each occasion. King was in the opposite dugout and at Park View Road guided the Wings to a 2-0 victory. The former Welling United boss wasn’t the only person up against his future club, Josh Hill was selected in the starting eleven and scored the opening goal. Hill had a previous spell with the Darts in 2013 and when Danny Mills netted the Wings second the Darts were sunk by two former players.

After the Boxing Day defeat, Dartford were looking for revenge at Princes Park on New Year’s Day. Ronnie Vint’s late winner with four minutes remaining was enough to earn the Darts three points. An excellent delivery by Ben Greenhalgh wasn’t cleared by the Welling United defence and Vint forced the ball home for the winner.

The previous campaign also saw the two sides meet on Boxing Day and New Year’s Day with Dartford completing a festive double. Out of the two clashes the away fixture at Park View Road will be remembered for Alfie Pavey’s superb last-minute strike. After the Darts threw away a two-goal lead given to them by an Andy Pugh brace, the home side pulled one back through former Dart, Callum Driver and with three minutes to go Jeffrey Monakana equalised. It looked like a draw was on the cards until in the last-minute Alfie Pavey produced a stunning scissor kick from outside the box to clinch victory.

The return fixture ended with a convincing Dartford win, their biggest against Welling United since New Year’s Eve in 1983. This time Pavey came off the bench to grab a brace against his old club to secure a 4-1 triumph. Ryan Hayes opened the scoring with a low drive and Elliot Romain headed the equaliser against his future side. Pugh sent the Darts into the break with a 2-1 lead before Pavey’s second-half goals.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 21 / Welling United wins: 10 / Draws: 9

Current League Form

Dartford (WWLWDL) Welling United (LLWLWD)
Tonbridge Angels H 3-0 Eastbourne Borough A 1-2
Welling United A 3-0 Dartford H 0-3
Concord Rangers H 0-1 Hemel Hempstead Town H 2-0
Billericay Town H 3-2 Dorking Wanderers A 0-2
Dulwich Hamlet A 1-1 Braintree Town H 6-2
Bath City A 0-3 Dulwich Hamlet H 0-0

Last Six Meetings

26.12.2019 Welling United 0 Dartford 3
01.01.2019 Dartford 1 Welling United 0
26.12.2018 Welling United 2 Dartford 0
01.01.2018 Dartford 4 Welling United 1
26.12.2017 Welling United 2 Dartford 3
28.02.2017 Welling United 0 Dartford 0

Stats

The Darts have won the last five games against Welling United at Princes Park in all competitions.

Dartford have tasted defeat just once in their last 12 games against the Wings after ninety minutes, on Boxing Day last year. The Darts also lost on penalties in the Kent Senior Cup three years ago.

The Darts have scored in each of their last 17 home games against Welling United, last failing to score on 28 February 1980 in the Kent Floodlit Cup. Dartford have scored in every home league game versus the Wings.

On Saturday the Darts kept back to back clean sheets in the league for the first time since February 2019.

League Record in 2019

Won 16 / Drawn 12 / Lost 15 / Scored 62 / Conceded 67

League Record This Decade

Won 187 / Drawn 102 / Lost 147 / Scored 665 / Conceded 580 / Goal Difference +85

On This Day

Dartford’s last two New Year’s Day wins have been against Welling United. Before those triumphs the Darts had gone six without a win on the first day of the year. In 2001, Dartford brushed aside Sittingbourne 5-2 in the Southern League Division One East, the start of seven consecutive away games on 1 January, in which Dartford lost five a drew two. The Darts lost to Fisher Athletic (2004), Maldon Town (2005) and Welling United (2011) before drawing with Ebbsfleet United in 2013. Defeats against Braintree Town (2015) and Ebbsfleet United (2017) followed before the run was stopped in 2018 against Welling United. That win ended a 28 year wait for a home New Year’s Day win, which came against Gravesend and Northfleet, the final score 5-0 after a goalless first-half.

Dartford v Tonbridge Angels

This weekend Dartford close out the year with the second of three consecutive Kent derbies, this time at home against Tonbridge Angels in the National South.

Only three months has passed since the Darts last met the Angels, management duo Adam Flanagan and Jamie Coyle took charge of the Darts for the last time. Dartford were struggling at the wrong end of the table sitting third from bottom, Tonbridge Angels a place and two points behind. Talk of a six pointer may have come too early, but the result proved to be crucial in another way.

Joe Turner scored twice to help Tonbridge Angels to a 3-2 victory the first coming from a penalty. Against the run of play Dartford levelled before the break when Josh Hill scored from close range. Parity didn’t last long as Turner put the Angels back in front before the break with a driving shot from fifteen yards. The Darts thought they could grab a point with fifteen minutes remaining, Ryan Hayes sent in a free-kick for Charlie Sheringham to equalise. Tonbridge Angels managed to win it with five minutes left, Tom Derry sliding in the winner and ending Flanagan and Coyle’s spell in charge.

Tonbridge’s triumph ended a dismal run against the Darts, who had won the last eight meetings. Four of those were at Princes Park with the most recent Dartford home victory versus their Kent rivals coming in the F.A Trophy second round seven years ago. Harry Crawford, Elliot Bradbrook and Jon Wallis scored that day and the same score was repeated in the F.A Cup four years later at Longmead, Alex Brown, Andy Pugh and Bradbrook netting this time.

Dartford have won the last two league games at Princes Park against the Angels, in 2011 Bradbrook, Danny Harris and Charlie Sheringham found the net in a 3-1 victory and in 2009, Allan Tait and Harris helped the Darts to a 2-0 triumph.

The Darts haven’t hit the heights they expected in 2019, but with recent performances under Steve King with a patched-up squad, there is plenty to look forward to in the next calendar year and on to next season. King has given Dartford a glimpse of the type of players he would like to bring to the club and if the injury list reduces then the Darts should find themselves in a better position.

The Darts will approach this weekend’s match fresh from an excellent 3-0 Boxing Day win against Welling United. Darren McQueen scored a brace at Park View Road with his first coming from the penalty spot, Elliot Romain also found the net to take his tally to eight for the season in just 11 appearances. Tom Bonner replaced Josh hill at the back and Charlie Sheringham came on as a substitute to get his first minutes since October.

Now two points off a top seven place, King still insists that the Darts are not ready for the playoff due to results being inconsistent, he told www.kentonline.co.uk: “The minute we win two, three, four games (in a row) then I’ll think we’ve got a bit of consistency but at the moment we haven’t got that”. Opponents, Tonbridge Angels had their derby against Maidstone United called off, King commented: “What does that mean? Are they going to be fitter, stronger faster? Maybe. We want to back up this win and we’ve not been able to do that since I’ve been here”.

Tonbridge Angels came through two playoff finals last season to earn promotion. Steve McKimm’s side, playing in the National South for the first time in five years, have been battling at the bottom and will be delighted to stay in the division come April. At the time of writing, prior their away trip to Hemel Hempstead Town, the Angels had taken just three points on the road and were still looking for their first away victory of the season.

Derry, who netted in September’s clash against the Darts is amongst the top scorers for the club this campaign along with D’Sean Theobalds and Joe Turner. One player who has had a positive impact is Dartford loanee Ben Greenhalgh. The midfielder scored a free-kick on his debut and has also chipped in with a few assists in his appearances so far for the club.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 67 / Tonbridge Angels wins: 38 / Draws: 24

Current League Form

Dartford (DDWLLD) Tonbridge Angels (DLLDWL)
Welling United A 3-0 Hemel Hempstead Town A 1-1
Concord Rangers H 0-1 Billericay Town H 3-2
Billericay Town H 3-2 Hungerford Town A 0-1
Dulwich Hamlet A 1-1 Slough Town A 0-0
Bath City A 0-3 St Albans City H 2-1
Maidstone United H 2-2 Oxford City H 4-4

Last Six Meetings

03.09.2019 Tonbridge Angels 3 Dartford 2
15.10.2016 Tonbridge Angels 0 Dartford 3
15.12.2012 Dartford 3 Tonbridge Angels 0
03.03.2012 Tonbridge Angels 0 Dartford 1
31.01.2012 Tonbridge Angels 2 Dartford 4
24.09.2011 Dartford 3 Tonbridge Angels 1

Stats

Dartford are five games unbeaten at Princes Park against Tonbridge Angels (W4, D1)

The Darts last lost to the Angels at home in 2004 when they lost 3-2 in the Southern League Division One East

Dartford have conceded just once in their last four home games against Tonbridge Angels keeping three clean sheets

On This Day

Dartford have won once in their last seven games played on 28 December and that was a 2-0 home derby with Erith and Belvedere back in 1998. The Darts last played on this day four years ago when they hosted Margate in the National South. Ronnie Vint, Ryan Hayes and Lee Noble are the only survivors from that game that also featured academy graduate Ebou Adams, now plying his trade at Forest Green Rovers. Elliot Bradbrook equalised six minutes into the second-half to earn a 1-1 draw, cancelling out the opener from Freddie Ladapo, who is now at Rotherham United. Nine years ago, Dartford were beaten by their local rivals Ebbsfleet United at Stonebridge Road, Bradbrook scored for the Darts whilst Derek Duncan and Callum Willock netted for Fleet. The Darts finished the match with nine men after Joe Bruce and James White were both sent off.

Welling United v Dartford

Steve King faces his former club on Boxing Day and there will be no room for sentiment, when he returns to Park View Road to take on local rivals Welling United.

A point will keep the Darts ahead of the Wings in the National South standings, whilst victory will move Dartford five points ahead of their rivals. For the third consecutive campaign the two sides meet each other over the festive season, the Darts will hope to avenge the defeat they suffered at Park View Road a year ago.

Frustrated with his side’s inconsistency, Steve King guided the Darts to a 3-2 home win against Billericay Town before watching on as Concord Rangers took all three points on the weekend. The Dartford boss described his team as ‘chalk and cheese’ when speaking to www.kentonline.co.uk, he commented: “We deserved the plaudits and to win the game against Billericay”, before adding his thoughts after the 1-0 defeat against Concord Rangers, he explained: “I felt there wasn’t enough quality,” he continued: “Normally you can have five or six off their game and the other six can carry you through but I thought nearly all of them were off their game”.

Crowd favourite, Ryan Hayes was praised for his efforts when he came on as a substitute as he ‘lifted the side’ in the final quarter. However the game hinged on two penalties, in form Dartford striker Elliott Romain hit the post with his spot kick, whilst Joel Nouble scored his penalty to earn the Beachboys victory. Two new signings were introduced to the Dartford faithful and one could be in line to face his former club on Boxing Day.

Sanchez Ming left the Wings a day before he was selected in Dartford’s starting eleven on the weekend. The full back was brought in on loan by King whilst at Welling United from Dulwich Hamlet, Ming signed permanently for the Wings in the summer but has now decided to team up with King once more, he was the only change to the team selected against Billericay Town. Appearing as a substitute on the weekend, Marcel Barrington has joined the Darts from Concord Rangers. The 24 year old was part of the Braintree Town side that beat Dartford in the National South playoffs in May 2018. The striker will already be familiar with midfielders Billy Crook and Luke Allen who were also in the Irons team that were promoted that season. In the three months King has been in charge the squad has a different look with over half of the players involved on Saturday new signings.

Welling United haven’t hit the heights of last term when King led them to the Playoff Final. Mark Goldberg has been in charge since the summer and now the Wings are down in sixteenth place, two points behind Dartford in thirteenth. Last season with King working under Goldberg, Welling United won on Boxing Day beating Dartford 2-0 after goals from two former Darts, Josh Hill and Danny Mills. This time Hill will be back in a Dartford shirt for the festive derby hoping to win at Park View Road again.

After a barren run in the league without finding the net, The Wings found some spark in their 6-2 victory at home against Braintree Town just over a month ago. A 2-0 away defeat at Dorking Wanderers followed in the league then a 2-0 win at home to Hemel Hempstead Town, former Dart, Nathan Green found the net. With their game at league leaders Wealdstone postponed on the weekend, Welling United last played in the National South almost three weeks ago.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 20 / Welling United wins: 9 / Draws: 10

Current League Form

Dartford (LWDLDW) Welling United (WLDLWL)
Concord Rangers H 0-1 Hemel Hempstead Town H 2-0
Billericay Town H 3-2 Dorking Wanderers A 0-2
Dulwich Hamlet A 1-1 Braintree Town H 6-2
Bath City A 0-3 Dulwich Hamlet H 0-0
Maidstone United H 2-2 Chippenham Town A 0-0
Hampton and Richmond A 2-1 Slough Town A 0-1

Last Six Meetings

01.01.2019 Dartford 1 Welling United 0
26.12.2018 Welling United 2 Dartford 0
01.01.2018 Dartford 4 Welling United 1
26.12.2017 Welling United 2 Dartford 3
28.02.2017 Welling United 0 Dartford 0
22.11.2016 Welling United 2 Dartford 2

Stats

Dartford have lost just one of their last six away league games (W4, D1, L1)

Over the last 15 years the Darts have won three out of 11 against Welling United at Park View Road (D4, L4).

Welling United have won just two of the last seventeen meetings between the two sides in normal time, the Wings did win a Kent Senior Cup tie on penalties.

On This Day

Last season’s 2-0 Boxing Day defeat against Welling United ended a run of three Boxing Day victories in a row. The last of those triumphs came in dramatic circumstances as Alfie Pavey’s last minute wonder goal separated the two teams two years ago. After the Darts threw away a two-goal lead given to them by an Andy Pugh brace, the home side pulled one back through former Dart, Callum Driver and with three minutes to go Jeffrey Monakana equalised. It looked like a draw was on the cards until in the last-minute Alfie Pavey produced a stunning scissor kick from outside the box to clinch victory. This year will be the fifth time in nine years in which the Darts have faced Welling United on this day. In 2011 the game ended 1-1 at Park View Road and in 2013, the Wings won 2-1.

Dartford v Concord Rangers

Dartford can put more distance between them and Concord Rangers this weekend if they complete a league double over the Essex club.

The Darts welcome the Beachboys to Princes Park knowing victory could potentially move themselves up into the top ten. Earlier this season, under the guidance of Tony Burman during his interim spell, the Darts beat Concord Rangers away from home to end a run of nine away games without a win. Charlie Sheringham opened the scoring after four minutes and Alex Flisher scored the second to claim all three points.

Unbeaten in their last three meetings against the Essex side at Princes Park, last season finished all square on home soil. Former Concord Rangers midfielder, Ben Greenhalgh netted against his former club only for Jack Midson to equalise. The Beachboys were reduced to ten men, however the Darts were unable to take advantage. Dartford had won the previous two home meetings before that 2-0 in August 2017 and 2-1 in September 2016.

Steve King will be hoping to achieve something the Darts have been unable to do this season, win consecutive home games. Last weekend the introduction of some new faces helped his side claim only a second league win at home by beating Billericay Town 3-2. Second choice goalkeeper Alhaji Sesay made his debut replacing Mark Smith, whilst Jordan Gibbons made way for new loan signing Rowan Liburd, who joined from Hereford. The striker’s performances for Billericay Town five years ago earned him a move to the Football League. The 27 year-old went on to play for Wycombe Wanderers, Stevenage and Leyton Orient. More recently he represented Hemel Hempstead Town and Guiseley before joining Hereford. On the substitutes bench Kyjoun Marsh-Brown returned from injury and made an appearance, whilst another new signing Miloud Djouaher came on to make his debut. Once again Elliott Romain continued his goalscoring streak taking his tally to seven goals in just nine games for the Darts.His double helped Dartford secure three points after Darren McQueen opened the scoring in the 3-2 triumph.

McQueen spoke to DFCTV after the game and commented: “We did really well to get the three points. We had to grind it out in the second half”, he added: “We all came together as a collective, the shape was very good as well, defensively we were hard to play through”. He continued: “Our home form hasn’t been the best, so this was the win we needed and we need to carry that on”.

Meanwhile, Concord Rangers were in F.A Trophy action and would have been Dartford’s opponents had they not been knocked out by Maidstone United. The Beachboys took on the Stones in the first round and it was music to Concord’s ears at full-time, although the afternoon didn’t begin too well. Maidstone United were two up inside twenty minutes, but Kit Elliott gave Concord Rangers hope before half-time. In the final eight minutes Lamar Reynolds equalised then Danny Green struck to complete the F.A Trophy comeback.

In the National South it hasn’t been particular great on the road for the Essex club losing their last four on their travels, yet their home form means they are just a point behind the Darts in the league standings. Danny Scopes will lead his team out at Princes Park with a degree of confidence after his side recorded consecutive victories. Before the 3-2 win over Maidstone United, the Beachboys claimed an impressive 5-0 triumph over Eastbourne Borough, in that starting eleven was former Dart, Billy Roast.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 5 / Concord Rangers wins: 2 / Draws: 3

Current League Form

Dartford (WDLDWW) Concord Rangers (WLDLWL)
Billericay Town H 3-2 Eastbourne Borough H 5-0
Dulwich Hamlet A 1-1 Wealdstone A 0-3
Bath City A 0-3 Dorking Wanderers H 3-3
Maidstone United H 2-2 Bath City A 1-3
Hampton and Richmond A 2-1 Hemel Hempstead Town H 3-1
Eastbourne Borough A 2-0 Havant & Waterlooville A 1-2

Last Six Meetings

14.09.2019 Concord Rangers 0 Dartford 2
26.01.2019 Dartford 1 Concord Rangers 1
14.08.2018 Concord Rangers 2 Dartford 0
06.01.2018 Concord Rangers 1 Dartford 1
15.08.2017 Dartford 2 Concord Rangers 0
11.03.2017 Concord Rangers 1 Dartford 1

Stats

In the last ten league games at Princes Park both teams have scored. Dartford last failed to score in the league at home on 13 April 2019 against Chippenham Town, whilst their last clean sheet was on 9 March 2019 in the 2-0 win versus Gloucester City.

In all competitions, the last five games involving Concord Rangers has seen 24 goals at an average of 4.8 goals per game.

On This Day

Dartford’s last home win on this day was back in 1974 when they beat Cambridge City 3-0 in the Southern Premier League, since then they have only played one more time at home. The 1991 Southern Premier League clash with Moor Green ended in the away side beating the Darts 3-1. Therefore, the visit of Concord Rangers will be the first time Dartford have hosted a team at Princes Park on this day. The last fixture on 21 December finished in a 2-1 loss at Alfreton Town six years ago in the National League and in 2002, Dartford hammered 5-0 at Histon in the Southern Division One East.

Dartford v Billericay Town

Dartford have the chance to leapfrog Billericay Town in the National South league standings this weekend with victory at Princes Park.

The Darts brought forward their fixture with the Essex club in which is now the only National South fixture this Saturday. Following early F.A Trophy exits from both clubs the game was moved to this weekend in hope of a larger crowd.

A win for Dartford will move them a point ahead of the Blues, so manager Steve King would like to see a repeat of the last meeting between the two sides at Princes Park. Almost eight months ago, in the penultimate game of the season, both teams were chasing a playoff spot. Tom Murphy became the hero with two late goals to overturn Jake Robinson’s strike for Billericay Town.

Dartford approach Saturday’s game on the back of five games without a win in all competitions with three draws and a couple of defeats. Their last outing saw the return of Jordan Wynter from injury and a new addition in Tyrique Hyde. Wynter made his first appearance since his injury almost three months ago. Hyde joined the Darts on loan from League Two side Colchester United and made his debut.

King made four changes to the team that lost 3-0 at Bath City, as well as Wynter and Hyde, Billy Crook returned to the starting eleven and so did Darren McQueen. However, Andy Pugh (broken hand) and Kyjuon Marsh-Brown (hamstring) were the latest casualties to appear on the Dartford injury list which included six others. The Darts looked good value in the second half, even though they went behind through Christian Smith’s free-kick. The equaliser came with fifteen minutes left when Elliott Romain won a penalty then scored from the spot, the striker now has five goals in eight games for the Darts.

After the game, King spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk and said: “I thought we were the better side for the majority of the game”, he added: “We had a central midfield made up of a full-back who hasn’t played for two or three months, Billy Crook who has been out for a month and Tyrique Hyde, who has just come in from Colchester. They never knew each other but the difference was that we had legs in there. I was worried about their central midfield area, I thought they would overpower us but the three boys in there did a magnificent job”.

Full back, Liam Gordon extended his loan spell with the Darts before the match and spoke to DFCTV after the 1-1 draw, he commented: “We could have taken more out of the game, the boys worked hard, but again it’s an away point”. Enjoying his loan spell at Dartford, Gordon is looking forward to the next two home fixtures against Billericay Town and Concord Rangers, he exclaimed: “We need to make the home ground a tough place to play at. We need teams to fear us when they are coming to our ground and most importantly for us to get the three points”.

Billericay Town have often been in the headlines over recent years under the ownership of Glen Tamplin, but all that has now changed. The former owner quit the Essex club in September and around the same time manager Harry Wheeler was replaced by former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Jamie O’Hara, despite the club being in seventh place. O’Hara has one National South victory as manager of the Blues, however he did guide the club to the F.A Cup first round after victories over Basildon United, Bath City and Sutton United, in which former Dartford goalkeeper Alan Julian scored the goal to force a replay.

On the weekend, O’Hara watched his side throw away a two-goal lead to lose 3-2 against Tonbridge Angels. The match featured a Dartford loanee and two former Darts, and all were involved amongst the goals in some part. Femi Akinwande made five appearances for Dartford having come through the academy system, the striker opened the scoring on seven minutes and ten minutes later Billericay Town doubled their lead through Odysseus Alfa. In the second-half Tonbridge Angels staged a comeback with former Dartford keeper Julian conceding three. Khale Da Costa pulled a goal back and two minutes later, Dartford loanee Ben Greenhalgh set up Tom Derry for the equaliser. Da Costa scored his second of the afternoon to complete the turnaround and condemn Billericay Town to their fifth away defeat of the campaign.

The two goals scored by Billericay Town on the weekend ended Jake Robinson’s run as the only Blues goalscorer since late October. The striker scored all seven of Billericay Town’s goals in the six competitive matches leading up to the 3-2 loss. Robinson has scored ten goals in his last nine appearances and nine in the National South so far, putting him second in the National South’s goalscoring charts.

Head to Head

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

Current League Form

Dartford (DLDWWD) Billericay Town (LDWLLD)
Dulwich Hamlet A 1-1 Tonbridge Angels A 2-3
Bath City A 0-3 Weymouth H 1-1
Maidstone United H 2-2 Dulwich Hamlet A 1-0
Hampton and Richmond A 2-1 Maidstone United A 1-2
Eastbourne Borough A 2-0 Slough Town A 1-3
Chippenham Town H 1-1 Dorking Wanderers H 2-2

Last Six Meetings

22.04.2019 Dartford 2 Billericay Town 1
15.09.2018 Billericay Town 1 Dartford 1
06.03.2010 Dartford 1 Billericay Town 4
02.02.2010 Billericay Town 1 Dartford 0
14.02.2009 Dartford 2 Billericay Town 0
04.10.2008 Billericay Town 0 Dartford 1

Stats

Dartford are unbeaten in their last two matches against Billericay Town.

The Darts have gone seven games without a home win in all competitions (D3, L4) and have won just one in ten this season at Princes Park (W1, D5, L4)

On This Day

At the time, nine years ago Dartford were paired with the biggest team in non-league when they were drawn against Crawley Town in the F.A Trophy first round. After an epic 3-3 draw in which the Darts were denied victory in stoppage time, the two sides played out the replay on 14 December 2010. Against the odds Dartford caused an upset under the floodlights of Princes Park and on that day three of the current squad were involved. Ryan Hayes, Tom Bonner and Charlie Sheringham played their part, but the hero was Tom Champion who scored in the 92nd minute to knock out the Sussex club led by manager Steve Evans, who labelled the Darts a ‘poor side’ after the game.

Dulwich Hamlet v Dartford

Dartford lost their first league game under Steve King last weekend and hope to get back to winning ways on Saturday, when they take on Dulwich Hamlet at Champion Hill.

The Darts travelled to Twerton Park last weekend having won their previous seven matches against Bath City. However, the Romans ended their winless streak with three unanswered goals in the first half. Tom Smith’s goal and Andy Watkins’ brace condemned Dartford manager Steve King to his first league defeat at the club.

Yet to make an appearance for Dartford since signing for the club in the summer, Sam Blackman returned to the squad and was named on the substitutes bench. Lee Noble, Charlie Sheringham and Jordan Wynter are still recovering from injuries whilst central midfield pairing Luke Allen and Billy Crook were also unavailable. At least King had his full backs returning, Jordan Gibbons and Liam Gordon were back in the starting eleven as was Cameron Brodie, whilst Andy Pugh and Darren McQueen dropped to the bench.

Luke Wanadio was representing Dulwich Hamlet the last time Dartford visited Champion Hill and the winger ended up on the winning side. Jamie Mascoll’s volley and a second from Decarry Sheriff secured a 2-0 victory for Hamlet. The Darts won the earlier meeting that season 2-1 at Princes Park with Charlie Sheringham scoring the winner from the spot.

The Darts are just three points ahead of Dulwich Hamlet, who remained in nineteenth place on Tuesday night thanks to Hungerford Town’s victory over Tonbridge Angels, who lined up with Ben Greenhalgh in the starting eleven on loan from Dartford. Dulwich Hamlet started their National South campaign strongly with three consecutive victories, in fact they took thirteen points from their opening six fixtures to leave them in second place. Since then Hamlet have failed to register a win in the league going back to late August, drawing five and losing seven in a twelve-game winless streak.

The latest reverse came on the weekend when Gavin Rose’s side lost 2-1 to Oxford City. Two penalties from Nana Owusu either side of Dominic Vose’s strike condemned the London club to another defeat. Hamlet have had better times in cup competitions this term and prior the loss at Oxford City they knocked out Chippenham Town in a F.A Trophy replay. After a 2-2 draw, former Dartford striker Danny Mills and David Ijaha scored the goals to send Hamlet into the first round. In the F.A Cup, Dulwich Hamlet reached the first round before going out to Carlisle United in front of the television cameras.

Danny Mills made 26 appearances for Dartford scoring six times during the heartbreaking campaign in which the Darts finished runners up on goal difference. The striker moved on to Welling United last term and is now at Champion Hill where he has managed to be a regular in Dulwich Hamlet’s starting eleven. Another former Dart is part of the management team, assistant manager Junior Kadi was part of the Isthmian Division One North title winning side in 2007/2008, the midfielder made 28 appearances and scored six times.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 1 / Dulwich Hamlet wins: 3 / Draws: 2

Current League Form

Dartford (LDWWDW) Dulwich Hamlet (LLDLDD)
Bath City A 0-3 Oxford City A 1-2
Maidstone United H 2-2 Billericay Town H 0-1
Hampton and Richmond A 2-1 Welling United A 0-0
Eastbourne Borough A 2-0 Bath City H 1-3
Chippenham Town H 1-1 Chelmsford City A 1-1
Oxford City A 1-0 Weymouth H 2-2

Last Six Meetings

02.03.2019 Dulwich Hamlet 2 Dartford 0
20.10.2019 Dartford 2 Dulwich Hamlet 1
31.03.2007 Dartford 1 Dulwich Hamlet 1
19.09.2006 Dulwich Hamlet 3 Dartford 2
09.12.1996 Dulwich Hamlet 3 Dartford 1
04.12.1996 Dartford 0 Dulwich Hamlet 0

Stats

Both sides are unbeaten in this fixture when playing at home, the Darts have drawn two and won one and Dulwich Hamlet have won all three at home.

Dartford’s loss at Bath City ended a run of four consecutive away wins in the league, in all competitions it ended a seven game unbeaten run on the road.

The Darts have failed to score in successive games for the first time this campaign, the last time they went two games without a goal was April last season.

On This Day

Lee Noble scored one of the goals of the round in the F.A Cup on this day. The Darts were drawn away to Bradford City and although the Bantams were too strong, Noble’s backheel on a muddy Valley Parade pitch was fine consolation in a 4-1 defeat. Twelve months earlier Dartford lost 1-0 away to Barnet at the Hive in the National League. Dartford last won on 7 December in 2011 when they swept aside Folkestone Invicta in the second round of the Kent Senior Cup. Jacob Erskine, Tom Bonner and Richard Graham’s brace set the Darts on their way as they reached the final that season.

Bath City v Dartford

Dartford can make it eight consecutive victories against Bath City when they return to National South action this weekend with a trip to Twerton Park.

The Darts started a new era last time they visited Twerton Park with joint managers Adam Flanagan and Jamie Coyle taking charge for the first time. The 2018/2019 season opener ended in triumph for the duo thanks to some late penalty drama. Dartford came from behind after Adam Mann scored ten minutes into his Bath City debut then Elliot Bradbrook equalised just before half-time. With four minutes remaining Bradbrook blasted his penalty over and within a minute the Darts were awarded a second spot-kick, which Delano Sam-Yorke netted to give the Darts their seventh straight win over the Romans.

Over the last week a depleted squad has performed admirably showing manager Steve King the character and attitude that should help the Darts up the National South table. Dartford have just come off the back of three consecutive matches against local rivals Maidstone United, drawing two and losing narrowly on Tuesday night.

In their last National South fixture, Dartford came from two down against the Stones with a couple of late goals by Tom Bonner and Darren McQueen to earn a draw. The two sides met again in the F.A Trophy and this time Maidstone United led twice only for Elliott Romain to equalise on both occasions. In total nine squad members were out through either illness, injury or to avoid being cup tied, which changed the look of the starting eleven including players playing out of position.

If the Darts felt they should have won the initial F.A Trophy clash, the same could have been said about the replay. Despite another committed performance the Darts were finally beaten when Iffy Allen finished off a counter attack. Once again King had limited personnel available but made one change for the replay bringing in Laurent Mendy for Ryan Hayes. The substitutes bench told its own story filled up mainly with academy players, one of which was Charlie Edmundson who made his debut for the club. Although beaten in the end, the Darts have moved in the right direction and will be tested this weekend when they visit Twerton Park.

Bath City are also returning to league action after their F.A Trophy replay win to Southern Premier League South side Gosport Borough. The first meeting ended with no goals to show for either team and so the two sides had to do it all over again on Wednesday night. The Romans were taken to extra time after throwing away a two goal lead, Tom Smith and Andy Watkins scoring the goals. Gosport Borough clawed their was back with to goals of their own, but it was Bath City who progressed when Ryan Brunt netted the winner.

The Romans may have lost their last National South game, but they remain on course to repeat what they achieved last term. Under Jerry Gill, Bath City reached the playoffs last season and they currently occupy fifth place. Their defeat at Havant and Waterlooville ended a five-match unbeaten league run, however at Twerton Park they remain five unbeaten in the National South stretching back to Bank Holiday August, their only home defeat so far in all competitions.

Jerry Gill’s side are eight points off leaders Wealdstone and if it hadn’t been for a run of one victory in nine from the end of August to mid-October, they would be title contenders. The 2019/2020 season started with three wins and two draws and recently the Somerset club put a run of four straight victories together in the league before the 2-1 reverse to Havant and Waterlooville.

Goal threats come from Tom Smith, Ryan Brunt and Adam Mann who have netted 24 goals between them in all competitions, Mann has managed seven in his last nine appearances. Defensively, the Romans have kept things tight and only two sides in the National South have conceded fewer goals this term.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 33 / Bath City wins: 40 / Draws: 19

Current League Form

Dartford (DWWDWL) Bath City (LWWWWD)
Maidstone United H 2-2 Havant & Waterloovile A 1-2
Hampton and Richmond A 2-1 Concord Rangers H 3-1
Eastbourne Borough A 2-0 Dulwich Hamlet A 3-1
Chippenham Town H 1-1 Dorking Wanderers H 1-0
Oxford City A 1-0 St Albans City A 1-0
Slough Town H 2-3 Maidstone United H 1-1

Last Six Meetings

09.02.2019 Dartford 3 Bath City 0
04.08.2018 Bath City 1 Dartford 2
21.04.2018 Dartford 2 Bath City 0
24.10.2017 Bath City 1 Dartford 2
04.03.2017 Dartford 2 Bath City 0
22.10.2016 Bath City 0 Dartford 1

Stats

Dartford have won the last seven games against Bath City with an aggregate score of 16-3. For the past three seasons the Darts have completed the double over the Romans.

The Darts are unbeaten in five games at Twerton Park winning the last three and drawing the other two. Bath City’s last home win over Dartford was a 4-2 victory on 2 December 1988.

Dartford are unbeaten in eight matches against Bath City last tasting defeat on 7 April 1990 at Watling Street.

On This Day

The Darts play their first away game on 30 November since 1983 when they drew 0-0 against Kings Lynn in the Southern Premier League. Dartford’s only win on this day since then was a 4-0 victory over Corby Town back in 2002 in the Southern League Division One East. The last Dartford fixture on 30 November ended in a 1-1 F.A Trophy draw against Forest Green Rovers six years ago, Danny Harris gave the Darts the lead which was cancelled out by Jan Klukowski.

Dartford v Maidstone United

Steve King takes charge of his first Kent derby as Dartford boss this weekend when his side hosts local rivals Maidstone United in the first of a double header.

The Darts will host the Stones this weekend and have been drawn away against them in the F.A trophy third qualifying round, which takes place next weekend. As well as the return National South fixture in April, the pair have also been drawn against each other in the Kent Senior Cup.

It has been almost four years to the day since the Darts last hosted the Stones in the National South, although the two were drawn in the Kent Senior Cup back in January. Since the arrival of Steve King, Dartford have won two and drawn one in the league but are without a home win since August. Meanwhile, Maidstone United fresh from their F.A Cup first round triumph are unbeaten in three league games, but without an away win since the first match in September.

Former Dartford manager John Still will be in the opposite dugout this weekend, the 69-year-old became Darts manager in 1983 leading the club to the Southern Premier League title in his first season. In the following campaign, Still guided the club to third in what is now the National League, which remains Dartford’s best ever league finish. He resigned in January 1986 after a difficult time on and off the pitch for the Darts in a season they ended up relegated, it took the club 26 years to return to the National League.

After the last set of Champions League games there was plenty of amusement at the fact an outfield player went in goal, this has become a familiar scenario in the last two games between Dartford and Maidstone United. In the Kent Senior Cup ten months ago, the Darts took the lead when Charlie Sheringham scored from a penalty, not the first time a spot kick was needed that night. The Stones won a penalty of their own five minutes before the break, which Bailey Vose saved.

Early in the second half goalkeeper Vose received his marching orders for a foul on Elliot Romain, now an in-form Dartford striker, leaving midfielder Ben Greenhalgh between the sticks for almost the entire second half. An inspired performance by Greenhalgh kept the score at 1-0 until nine minutes from time when Romain equalised. A penalty shoot-out followed and after 15 perfect spot kicks Maidstone United goalkeeper Josh Strizovic saved Daniel Johnson’s effort, sending the Stones into the last four.

In April 2016, Lee Burns ended up in goal during the closing stages of the game after Deren Ibrahim suffered an arm injury. Nathan Ferguson’s second-half winner was enough to earn Dartford a 2-1 win at the Gallagher Stadium, Elliot Bradbrook’s penalty was earlier cancelled out by Keaton Wood’s own goal.

However, the last Princes Park meeting in November 2015 ended all square in which current squad members Andy Pugh, Ryan Hayes, Ronnie Vint and Lee Noble all played a part. Alex Flisher, who had a spell with the Darts this season headed Maidstone United in front and with eight minutes to go Elliot Bradbrook’s equalised. The midfielder’s effort was initially ruled out for offside until it was overturned causing some controversy.

Four years ago, several players had represented both clubs, nowadays there are not so many. Aside from Romain the only other player who can list Dartford and Maidstone United in their career history is Ryan Johnson, the defender was part of Dartford’s Isthmian Premier League title winning squad in 2009/2010 making 17 appearances and scoring one goal.

Romain joined the Darts from Eastbourne Borough and the striker has scored twice in his first three appearances for the club. He was on target in the 2-1 away win at Hampton and Richmond Borough over a week ago and netted against his former side in the 2-0 victory at Priory Lane. Another of King’s signings found themselves of the scoresheet in Dartford’s last triumph, Kyjoun Marsh-Brown scored the opener versus Hampton and Richmond.

Dartford will be without Lee Noble who will no longer need an operation on his knee, Charlie Sheringham has been out with a dislocated shoulder, Jordan Wynter has been side-lined and Sam Blackman is yet to return from his pre-season leg break. King has already drafted in full back Liam Gordon from Dagenham and Redbridge to replace the departed Mark Onyemah, whilst Ben Greenhalgh has gone out on loan with Tonbridge Angels. The Dartford boss is looking to strengthen the squad and although he has left out wingers Ryan Hayes and Luke Wanadio in his selections, King claims he is still a fan of wingers and a traditional 4-4-2 formation but is looking for a ‘ball winner’ in midfield.

The Stones were involved in the F.A Cup last weekend taking part in the first round for the sixth consecutive season. An own goal by Torquay United’s Matt Buse was the difference sending Maidstone United through to the second round with a 1-0 win, the Kent side will face League One side Blackpool.

Both Dartford and Maidstone United played in form Hampton and Richmond Borough in their last league games. Whilst the Darts won in their trip to the Beveree, the Stones suffered a 2-1 loss ending a seven-game unbeaten run in all competitions. Kyron Farrell gave the hosts an early lead which was cancelled out by Nana Kyei, however Tyrone Lewthwaite scored a last-minute winner for Hampton and Richmond Borough. The Stones have drawn their last two away games, first they recorded a 1-1 draw with Bath City then repeated the same score line against Braintree Town.

John Still has some experience heads in his squad with the likes of former Wolverhampton Wanderers defender George Elokobi, where he made 85 appearances and Gavin Hoyte, who has represented several Football League clubs. Whilst Matt McClure is the club’s top scorer this term with Dan Wishart close behind.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 44 / Maidstone United wins: 44 / Draws: 17

Last Six Meetings

22.01.2019* Dartford 1 Maidstone United 1
09.04.2016 Maidstone United 1 Dartford 2
14.11.2015 Dartford 1 Maidstone United 1
20.03.2010 Dartford 3 Maidstone United 0
09.03.2010 Maidstone United 0 Dartford 1
31.01.2009 Dartford 1 Maidstone United 0

* – Kent Senior Cup, Maidstone United won 8-7 on penalties

Stats

Dartford are unbeaten in their last six league games against Maidstone United, winning five.

The Stones last beat Dartford in the league back in 2007 and the last away victory in league over the Darts came in 1978.

On This Day

John Still was in charge of the Darts on this day in 1985 when his side travelled to AFC Bournemouth in the F.A Cup first round. A 0-0 draw secured a replay, however for the second season in a row Dartford lost the rematch to the same opponents, this time a round earlier. Dartford last played on 16 November in 2015 when they knocked Gillingham out of the Kent Senior Cup second round, ending a run of seven games without a win on this day. In 2010, Tony Burman led his team out at Vale Park losing 4-0 in the F.A Cup first round replay to Port Vale. The last league triumph on 16 November came way back in 1963 when Dartford beat Wellington Town 5-3 at home in the Southern Premier League.

Hampton and Richmond Borough v Dartford

Dartford have the chance to overtake their opponents on Tuesday night with victory against Hampton and Richmond Borough in the National South.

The Darts visit the Beveree on the back of some excellent form on the road, whilst the Beavers have currently won their last four league outings. Steve King’s side know a win will move them up to at least thirteenth in the table, their highest placing of the season. Whilst Hampton and Richmond Borough could enter the top ten with a victory.

King has now been in charge for two league matches taking four points and so far he is content with the return, he spoke to the Darts Media Team after the 2-0 win at Eastbourne Borough on the weekend: “Unbeaten in the league, I’m happy with that. Two points per game is decent, but we’re a work in progress. We’ve brought three or four in and there will be more comings and goings, but we just have to trying to mold what we’re doing. The guys have been brilliant and bought into what we’ve asked and they have been fantastic so far and they are a lovely group to work with”.

Liam Gordon made his debut on the weekend against Eastbourne Borough, after arriving on loan from Dagenham and Redbridge, and Kyjuon Keanu-Marsh came off the bench for his first appearance. Gordon replaced the departed Mark Onyemah and Norman Wabo was named in the starting eleven instead of Andy Pugh. Once again, King opted to play a narrow formation and with the selection of Wabo injected more pace up front. Wabo started the scoring grabbing his fourth of the campaign, but the goal of the day belonged to Elliott Romain who opened his Dartford account in only his second game. The former Eastbourne Borough striker’s scorching 30 yard effort made sure the Darts recorded a 2-0 triumph.

After the game, defender Josh Hill echoed his manager’s sentiment, he commented: “It was a great win it was a really good win. The conditions were horrible and it was always going to be about the team that dealt with the conditions the best. We were really solid at the back, but also all eleven of us defended well, we were really organised”. Hill is also excited about what’s in store for the Darts, he explained: “For the first few games we’ve done alright, but it can only get better. As King gets his ideas across we can only get stronger and I’m really looking forward to the rest of the season”. Looking at the short term, Hill added that Tuesday’s fixture “will be a different type of game because the conditions won’t be as bad. Away from home we’re going to games with more confidence”.

Dartford’s last trip to the Beveree was just under a year ago when they won 1-0 and it was Charlie Sheringham’s header that was decisive. In March the two sides drew 2-2 at Princes Park in the last meeting between them. Darren McQueen came off the bench to score a last minute equaliser, whilst earlier Sheringham netted a penalty. Hampton and Richmond Borough twice took the lead through Oliver Sprague then Christopher Dickson.

On the weekend Hampton and Richmond Borough secured their fourth consecutive win beating Dartford’s local rivals Maidstone United. The Beavers left it late, as substitute Tyrone Lewthwaite won the game from close range. Earlier, Kyron Farrell’s long range shot put the hosts ahead, but Maidstone United equalised through Nana Kyei, who scored against his former club. Prior the 2-1 win at home to the Stones, Gary McCann’s side had not conceded in three matches providing the foundations to their current good form.

Danilo Orsi-Dadamo is one to watch if selected, having scored seven goals from 16 appearances this term. The striker signed from Hungerford Town in the summer and scored when he returned to Bulpit Lane at the end of last month. Prior the trip to Berkshire, the Beavers beat Kent sides Welling United and Tonbridge Angels and now they set their sights on another Kent scalp making it four in their last five outings.

Dartford will be without Lee Noble, however better news was announced last week in that the midfielder will not be out for as long as first anticipated. Charlie Sheringham is recovering from a dislocated shoulder, Jordan Wynter is still working on a return and Sam Blackman remains out. Mark Onyemah left the club last week after 115 appearances for the Darts over two spells.

Head to Head

Hampton and Richmond Borough wins: 4 / Dartford wins: 6 / Draws: 2

Current League Form

Dartford (WDWLWL) Hampton & Richmond (WWWWLL)
Eastbourne Borough A 2-0 Maidstone United H 2-1
Chippenham Town H 1-1 Hungerford Town A 2-0
Oxford City A 1-0 Welling United A 1-0
Slough Town H 2-3 Tonbridge Angels H 1-0
Concord Rangers A 2-0 Slough Town A 1-3
Dorking Wanderers H 3-4 Concord Rangers H 2-3

Last Six Meetings

23.03.2019 Dartford 2 Hampton & Richmond 2
17.11.2018 Hampton & Richmond 0 Dartford 1
30.03.2018 Dartford 1 Hampton & Richmond 0
02.09.2017 Hampton & Richmond 2 Dartford 2
17.04.2017 Dartford 3 Hampton & Richmond 1
29.08.2016 Hampton & Richmond 4 Dartford 1

Stats

Another away victory for the Darts will make it six in a row in all competitions matching the run from 17 February 2018 to 4 August 2018.

Dartford are unbeaten in five games against Hampton and Richmond Borough and have scored in their last eight versus the Beavers.

The Beavers have won just two of their last nine against the Darts, but in those victories they put four goals past Dartford in each game.

On This Day

Dartford’s last two matches on this day were both F.A Cup first round ties and on each occasion they were convincingly knocked out. Two years ago the Darts lost 5-1 to League Two side Swindon Town, Timi Elsnick scored either side of Harry Smith’s goal giving the visitors a three goal lead at half-time. Early second half goals from Amine Lingazi and Paul Mullin put the Robins five up, but Richard Sho-Silva got the biggest cheer of the afternoon with Dartford’s consolation seven minutes from time. Dartford also reached the same stage twelve months earlier going down 6-3 to National League club Sutton United. The Darts pegged the U’s back three times before the Surrey club ran away three unanswered goals in the last half hour. Elliot Bradbrook scored a brace as did Sutton United’s Maxime Biamou, Roarie Deacon and Ross Stearn, Duane Ofori-Acheampong was Dartford’s other goalscorer. The last league game played on the 5 November was the 2-1 win at Salisbury City. It’s been five years since the Darts played on Guy Fawkes Day when they beat Salisbury City in the National South. Dartford were behind after just 80 seconds but fought back with goals from Jon Wallis and Jacob Erskine. Other notable results include the 5-1 Southern League Division One East win over Aveley in 2005 and a 6-2 Kent League Cup triumph against Greenwich Borough in 1994.

Eastbourne Borough v Dartford

Dartford play their first away fixture under new manager Steve King, travelling to Eastbourne Borough this weekend in the National South.

Familiar with the football scene in Sussex during spells at Lewes and Whitehawk, King will be hoping to lead the Darts to their fifth consecutive victory on the road in all competitions. Dartford are just a point from the relegation zone and a triumph at Priory Lane will see them rise above their opponents.

Attempting to make his mark and change the playing style at the Darts, King’s squad has been hampered by injuries to key players. Lee Noble faces a lengthy spell on the sidelines whilst Charlie Sheringham, Jordan Wynter and Sam Blackman are a few weeks away from a return. Added to that list, Mark Onyemah who had just got over an operation in the summer, hobbled off against Chippenham Town with what looked like a hamstring problem. However, since taking over the helm at Princes Park, King has managed to sign full back Jordan Gibbons from Chelmsford City and striker Elliott Romain from this weekend’s opponents.

Both new signings made their league debuts last weekend in the 1-1 home draw with Chippenham Town. Gibbons had already made his full debut in the F.A Cup reverse against Kingstonian, the right back retained his place in the line up and impressed against Chippenham Town. Initially the Darts played a narrow formation with Billy Crook, Luke Allen and Cameron Brodie as a midfield trio with Andy Pugh behind strikers Romain and Darren McQueen. The visitors took the lead through Kieran Parselle after Dartford failed to clear a controversially awarded free kick, the goalscorer was to make another impact on the game later on. With the Darts chasing at least a point, wingers Ryan Hayes and Luke Wanadio came off the bench to stretch the Chippenham Town defence. With five minutes left, Parselle was sent off and three minutes later central defender, Josh Hill moved up front and expertly curled in the equaliser.

King was left disappointed at the decision to award the visitors the free kick leading up to their goal, he spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk after the game and said: “Their goal I was little bit upset about because it wasn’t a free-kick on the far side, the referee even said it wasn’t so why did he give it?”. However the Dartford boss was pleased with his team adapting to a new style, he commented: “We’re keeping good possession of the ball and they’ll get braver as it comes along, it’s just that last little bit and that will come in time”, he continued: “The boys can’t do anymore than what has been asked of them, I thought they applied themselves brilliantly and bought into the way we’re playing and what we want to do”.

The new Dartford boss is likely to continue shaping the squad with new players and one area he has hinted at is left back. The signing of Gibbons on the opposite side of the pitch has given the Darts a flavour of what to expect, he explained: “Jordan on the right will get better as games go and he plays more matches”, he added: “Saturday (against Chippenham) was his third 90 minutes in two months so as he gets fitter and stronger he’ll be able to do more. We need to be able to do that on the left-hand side as well so we’ll get a left-sider in that can do that bit”.

As well as Romain returning to Priory Lane, goalkeeper Mark Smith also had a spell with the Sports. Romain joined the Sussex club in the summer and was Lee Bradbury’s first signing, however with Bradbury’s departure almost a fortnight ago and financial issues at Eastbourne Borough, King snapped up Romain after he was released and his recent comments shows he has faith in the striker, he explained: “I think he’s capable of 20 goals in this division. He’s done it at other clubs, Eastbourne Borough, Dagenham and Redbridge, Maidstone United, so for this level he’s a 20 goal-a-season man. He will get better and better in the system I play as time goes by”. Smith spent the first half of last season at Eastbourne Borough before a spell with Billericay Town, Smith has been ever present in the Dartford goal this term.

Seven of the current Dartford squad featured in the humiliating defeat last time the Darts visited Priory Lane. Under the guidance of former managers Adam Flanagan and Jamie Coyle, Dartford recorded their worst defeat in sixteen years when they went down 6-0. Charlie Walker kept hold of the match ball after his hat-trick, Kane Wills, Michael West and Corey Jordan also found the back of the Dartford net. The F.A Trophy third qualifying tie at the same venue went much better almost a year ago, Kudus Oyenuga’s late equaliser forced a replay cancelling out Dean Cox’s strike, the Darts went on to lose the replay at Princes Park 3-2.

Eastbourne Borough played on Tuesday night and were denied all three points against ten men Weymouth. Walker gave the hosts the lead before the Terras missed a penalty then had Brett Williams sent off. Weymouth were awarded a second penalty eight minutes from time and this time Alex McCarthy scored. It was the Sport’s second 1-1 draw in a row after their stalemate at Hemel Hempstead Town on the weekend, Greg Luer equalising for the Sussex side. Eastbourne Borough have now drawn the most games in the division, seven of their 15 National South fixtures this season.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 10 / Eastbourne Borough wins: 6 / Draws: 4

Current League Form

Dartford (DWLWLL) Eastbourne Borough (DDWLDL)
Chippenham Town H 1-1 Weymouth H 1-1
Oxford City A 1-0 Hemel Hempstead Town A 1-1
Slough Town H 2-3 St Albans City A 3-1
Concord Rangers A 2-0 Chelmsford City H 0-4
Dorking Wanderers H 3-4 Bath City A 2-2
Tonbridge Angels A 2-3 Slough Town H 0-2

Last Six Meetings

20.04.2019 Eastbourne Borough 6 Dartford 0
27.11.2018 Dartford 2 Eastbourne Borough 3
24.11.2018 Eastbourne Borough 1 Dartford 1
08.09.2018 Dartford 2 Eastbourne Borough 2
14.04.2018 Eastbourne Borough 0 Dartford 1
12.09.2017 Dartford 4 Eastbourne Borough 2

Stats

Dartford have won their last four away games in all competitions, a fifth consecutive victory will be the first time the Darts have achieved this feat since April 2018.

Four of Dartford’s five goals against the Sports last season came in the last five minutes of matches.

Prior the F.A Trophy defeat and 6-0 hiding last season, the Darts had gone 12 games unbeaten in all competitions against Eastbourne Borough (W8, D4).

On This Day

Dartford set up a F.A Cup first round tie with Aldershot on this day in 1968. The Darts travelled to Guildford in the fourth qualifying round and won 1-0 setting up a chance to avenge defeat against the Shots four years earlier in the same competition. Dartford also reached the first round in 1982 having survived a scare at Boreham Wood three days earlier. Aidan O’Sullivan’s late equaliser earned a replay which took place on 2 November, the Darts were forced into extra time before going through with a 2-1 victory. The last game on this day came six years ago when the Darts were beaten by Forest Green Rovers in the National League, James Norwood scored the decisive goal in a match that featured Ryan Hayes and Josh Hill. Ten years earlier, Dartford drew a F.A Trophy first round tie with Ashford Town (Middlesex) and two days later went out of the competition after a replay.