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National League South Season Preview 2018/2019 – Part Four

Truro City |Wealdstone | Welling United | Weston-super-Mare | Woking

Truro City

Founded: 1889 / Ground: Plainmoor

Seven years ago, Truro City propelled themselves up the football pyramid reaching the National South for the first time in their history. Since then they have had financial problems, relegation back to the Southern Premier and a return to the National South. A much more stable club now, the White Tigers reached the playoffs for a second time in three seasons losing to Hampton and Richmond Borough after extra time. At late notice Truro City will groundshare with Torquay United this season as they plan for a new stadium. They also reached the F.A Cup first round for the first time in their history last season, putting in a credible performance against Charlton Athletic in their 3-1 defeat.

Last Season

National South: 7th

F.A Cup: 1st Round

F.A Trophy: 1st Round

League Top Scorer: Cody Cooke (13 goals)

Average Attendance: 469 (15th in National South)

The Manager – Lee Hodges

In his second spell as manager of Truro City, Lee Hodges has taken the White Tigers to the playoffs in two of the last three campaigns. In his first spell he won the Southern Premier League with the club to complete the Cornwall club’s rise from the Western League, their fourth title in five seasons. As a player he won two league titles with Plymouth Argyle and the promotion to the Football League with Torquay United through the playoffs. Finishing his playing career at Truro City, Hodges first spell as manager ended due to financial problems the club faced, two years ago he returned to Treyew Road to finish off a job.

The Summer

The White Tigers will be pinning their goal scoring hopes on new striker Jared Lewington. A target for manager Lee Hodges last summer Lewington joins from Southern Premier League side Tiverton Town. Midfielder Lloyd Gardner moves from Buckland Athletic whilst Truro City welcome back Louis Rooney from Linfield, who was on loan at Treyew Road in 2016/2017. The Cornwall club have lost some decent players in the process including Cody Cooke to St Mirren, goalkeeper Tom McHale and Ben Gerring to Billericay Town. Fletcher Williams, River Allen and Stewart Yetton have also been released. Alex Hartridge and Max Smallcombe sign on loan from Exeter City, defender Cameron Kelly arrives from Buckland Athletic and goalkeeper Corey Harvey will be on dual registration with Bodmin Town. Hodges has managed to secure the services of Bristol City youngsters Jojo Wollacott and Tom Richards on loan. Wollacott spent time on loan last season with club. Paul Bignot will provide football league experience and has been capped by England at C level.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 3 / Truro City wins: 4 / Draws: 1

Previous Meetings

24.02.2018 Dartford 4 Truro City 1
11.11.2017 Truro City 3 Dartford 1
18.03.2017 Dartford 5 Truro City 3
08.10.2016 Truro City 0 Dartford 5
05.04.2016 Truro City 3 Dartford 0
19.09.2015 Dartford 0 Truro City 1

Next Meetings

Saturday 27 October 2018 at Treyew Road

Saturday 30 March 2019 at Princes Park

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Wealdstone

Founded: 1889 / Ground: Vale Stadium

On 21 August 2017 a monumental change happened at Wealdstone. A generation of supporters would only know the club with Gordon Bartlett at the helm, he stepped down after twenty-two years. A big change after Bartlett managed one win in the five games at the start of the season. In came Bobby Wilkinson from Hungerford Town who led the Stones to their obligatory mid-table position come the end of the season. The new regime started in good form with one defeat in twelve games and then Wealdstone returned to their norm. This summer has seen a major overhaul of players and so after four campaigns in the National South, the Stones will be looking at a playoff place.

Last Season

National South: 11th

F.A Cup: 3rd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: Semi-Final

County Cup: Semi-Final

League Top Scorer: David Pratt (14 goals)

Average Attendance: 880 (3rd in National South)

The Manager – Bobby Wilkinson

It came as a shock when Bobby Wilkinson quit Hungerford Town early last season, after all he had spent seven seasons improving the Crusaders. He led the Berkshire club to promotion through the Southern League South & West playoffs and went on to win the Southern Premier playoffs. In Hungerford Town’s first campaign in the National South he guided them to an impressive sixth, missing out on the playoffs due to ground grading requirements. Wilkinson also got the Crusaders to the F.A Trophy last eight on two occasions during his time there. This summer is the first with the Stones for the new boss and has seen many changes to the playing personnel.

The Summer

Bobby Wilkinson went early with transfers this summer having had the majority of last season to assess his players. Plenty of players departed including defender Ian Gayle to Woking, and a squad worth arrived. Former Dartford defender Tom Gardiner will be a Wealdstone player, signed from St Albans City he made 75 appearances for the Darts between 2015 and 2017. Ebbsfleet United missed a trick when they didn’t give Yado Mambo the number five shirt, he will certainly be wearing that number with the Stones. A superb F.A Cup hat-trick put Matthew Lench in the limelight last term, the midfielder joins having scored 15 times for Slough Town last season. Wadah Ahmidi and Sam Hatton follow each other from Staines Town, the same goes for Rhys Tyler, Stefan Brown and James Clark from Wilkinson’s former club Hungerford Town and Godfrey Poku and Freddie Grant from Oxford City. Montel Agyemang from East Thurrock United, Marvel Ekpiteta from Bishop’s Stortford, Jake Sheppard from Reading’s academy team and Connor Stevens from Watford U23’s all join the Stones. Bradley Hudson-Odoi returns to the club, the Stones Junior Player of the Year in 2015/2016 has been away with Hampton and Richmond Borough, Sutton United, Eastleigh and Maidstone United. Goalkeeper Callum Thomas impressed Bobby Wilkinson during pre-season and joins from Charlton Athletic. Striker, Joe White rejoins the Stones on loan from Stevenage, he previously scored six goals in 17 appearances for Wealdstone.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 13 / Wealdstone wins: 13 / Draws: 13

Previous Meetings

17.02.2018 Wealdstone 1 Dartford 2
21.11.2017 Dartford 3 Wealdstone 3
28.01.2017 Wealdstone 0 Dartford 4
06.08.2016 Dartford 2 Wealdstone 2
26.01.2016 Dartford 1 Wealdstone 2
03.10.2015 Wealdstone 2 Dartford 1

Next Meetings

Saturday 18 March 2018 at Princes Park

Saturday 5 January 2019 at Vale Stadium

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Welling United

Founded: 1963 / Ground: Park View Road

A new start for the Wings who finished tenth last season, out goes new Dartford boss Jamie Coyle and in comes former Whitehawk manager Steve King. Welling United have plenty of experience in the top two tiers of non-league football going back to the late seventies. The Kent side were amongst the front runners in the first three months of last season thanks to a six-game winning streak. A drop of form in November and December as well as a poor end to the season left the Wings eight points shy of the playoffs. Since relegation from the National League, Welling United have stabilised in the National South and will be pushing for the playoffs under new management.

Last Season

National South: 10th

F.A Cup: 2nd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 3rd Qualifying Round

County Cup: 2nd Round

League Top Scorer: Bradley Goldberg (10 goals)

Average Attendance: 541 (10th in National South)

The Manager – Steve King

Nothing but a top seven finish will be acceptable for Steve King at Welling United. The ambitious manager was appointed this summer after he departed Whitehawk. To be fair his task of keeping the Hawks up last term was difficult considering the ground he had to make up, despite improvements they still went down. In his first spell at Whitehawk life was rosier, King kept the Hawks up, reached a playoff final and made it to the F.A Cup second round, almost earning a tie with Everton. He had spells managing Lewes, Northwich Victoria and Farnborough before he took Macclesfield Town to the F.A Cup fourth round in 2013.

The Summer

It seems to be theme that managers are looking towards their former clubs and it’s no different for Steve King. The new Welling United boss has brought in goalkeeper Daniel Wilks, Jordon Gibbons and Nassim L’Ghoul from relegated Whitehawk. King is also familiar with John Paul Kissock who also had a spell with the Hawks before joining Southport, the pair also worked together at Macclesfield Town and will both be working wioth each other once more. Former Canadian international, Gavin McCallum won the Supporters Player of the Year with Eastbourne Borough last term, scorer of 15 goals in 39 games the midfielder will be a Welling United player this season. Richard Orlu has been signed from Woking, the former Dover Athletic defender could pair up with Anthony Acheampong, who joins the Wings for his third spell after signing from Dulwich Hamlet. Ben Jefford and Jack Parkinson have left Park View Road along with Director of Football, Tristan Lewis. French centre-back Thierry Audel worked with King at Macclesfield Town. Since leaving the SIlkmen he played for Crewe Alexandra, Notts County and Barrow. King also once got the best out of Danny Mills when at Whitehawk, the striker scored 58 goals over two seasons there. Signed from Ebbsfleet United, he went out on loan last term to Dartford where he scored six in 26 games. David Ijaha is another from Whitehawk, the midfielder includes St Albans City, Harrow Borough and Wealdstone as former clubs. Guinea-Bissau international Arnaud Mendy will also be part of the Wings squad this season and has represented Luton Town, Macclesfield Town, Lincoln City and Whitehawk. Hampton and Richmond Borough’s Player of the Season, Brendan Kiernan moves to Park View Road, the 25-year-old has played for Ebbsfleet United, Bromley and AFC Wimbledon in the past.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 19 / Welling United wins: 7 / Draws: 10

Previous Meetings

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
06.09.2016 Dartford 2 Welling United 1
19.10.2015 Dartford 3 Welling United 1

Next Meetings

Wednesday 26 December 2018 at Park View Road

Tuesday 1 January 2019 at Princes Park

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Weston-super-Mare

Founded: 1887 / Ground: Woodspring Stadium

The longest serving club currently in the National South, the Seagulls recorded their highest finish since 2014 and it could have been better. The Somerset club were always chasing the playoff spot without really threatening to break into the top seven. At home, Weston-super-Mare took advantage of those clubs below them in the table tasting defeat just once. They swept aside Eastbourne Borough and Wealdstone 5-1 but were also capable of losing to struggling Whitehawk by the same score line. Those inconsistencies cost the Seagulls a better campaign and when they lost eight of their last eleven fixtures, the Somerset club knew a fifteenth consecutive season in the National South would beckon.

Last Season

National South: 12th

F.A Cup: 2nd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 2nd Round

County Cup: Winners

League Top Scorer: Gethyn Hill (19 goals)

Average Attendance: 492 (14th in National South)

The Manager – Marc McGregor

Formerly a player and assistant manager at Weston-super-Mare, Marc McGregor took the step up last summer. He already had experience as a player coach with Worcester City and played for Oxford United and Notts County. The former England C international moved to Forest Green Rovers and was there until Ian Holloway took him on at Queens Park Rangers. Injury forced McGregor to quit playing full time and so he had spells with Tamworth and Hinckley. He guided the Seagulls to a County Cup triumph in his first campaign and the club’s highest finish since 2014 when they ended up in twelfth.

The Summer

Jamie Lucas joins permanently after two loan spells with the club. The striker scored 12 in 21 for Weston-super-Mare at the age of 19. Outside of his spells with the Seagulls, the striker has played for Gloucester City, Boreham Wood, Woking, Bath City and F.A Trophy finalists Brackley Town. He has also made four appearances for Bristol Rovers. Former Dart, Ben Swallow has joned from Bognor Regis Town, the midfielder made 11 appearances for Dartford in 2014. Danny Greenslade has left the Somerset club for Hereford F.C. Tristan Plummer has decided to move onto pastures new, signing with Bitton A.F.C. After a successful trial with the Seagulls, Eli Phipps signs from Colchester United.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 8 / Weston-Super-Mare wins: 3 / Draws: 4

Previous Meetings

07.04.2018 Dartford 3 Weston-super-Mare 1
23.09.2017 Weston-super-Mare 3 Dartford 0
17.01.2017 Dartford 3 Weston-super-Mare 2
26.11.2016 Weston-super-Mare 2 Dartford 4
20.08.2016 Weston-super-Mare 1 Dartford 2
05.03.2016 Weston-super-Mare 2 Dartford 1

Next Meetings

Saturday 29 September 2018 at Princes Park

Saturday 6 April 2019 at Woodspirng Stadium

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Woking

Founded: 1945 / Ground: Enclosed Ground

Relegated from the National South after six years, the Cards needed one more goal entering the last minute of the season. Poised at 1-1 with Dover Athletic and needing victory, Woking conceded instead ending their stay in the National League. The Surrey club were promoted to the top non-league division as champions in the season Dartford went up with them. The Cards held their own until last term and looked to be doing the same again at the end of November. After victory against Ebbsfleet United on 21 November 2017, Woking won just three more games as they slumped towards the bottom four. A win in their penultimate fixture gave them hope but it wasn’t to be for the Cards.

Last Season

National League: 21st

F.A Cup: 2nd Round

F.A Trophy: 1st Round

County Cup: 1st Round

League Top Scorer: Charlie Carter (12 goals)

Average Attendance: 2024 (8th in National League)

The Manager – Alan Dowson

Alan Dowson represented Millwall, Fulham, Bradford City and Darlington before non-league football came calling. He spent time at Slough Town, Gateshead then Waltham and Hersham, where he got his break as a manager. Staying in Surrey, Dowson then took charge of Kingstonian where he won the Isthmian Division One South. He was unveiled as Hampton and Richmond Borough’s manager in 2014 and two years later led the Beavers to the Isthmian Premier League title. Dowson made his former club contenders for promotion to the National League losing last season’s playoff final. Now he will start a new challenge back in Surrey to get Woking back to the National League at the first attempt.

The Summer

Top scorer in a struggling season, Charlie Carter attracted the attention of Chesterfield and moved to the newly relegated National League side. Josh Staunton also makes the step up a division by switching to FC Halifax Town. With a new boss at the helm many more have arrived, mainly from his former side Hampton and Richmond Borough and last season’s runners up Dartford. Nathan Collier worked with Dowson at Hampton and Richmond Borough and now has his man back, Collier joins from Dartford having made 21 appearances for them last season. Struggling with injury, striker Duane Ofori-Acheampong only managed six starts for the Darts last term and along with the impressive goalkeeper Berti Schotterl, who kept six clean sheets in 13 outings the total of former Dartford players reaches three. Dowson has taken Charlie Wassmer with him from his old club, the defender was namesd in the National South’s team of the season and after over 150 appearances for Hampton and Richmond Borough, Josh Casey follows. Jack Cook formed a partnership with Wassmer with the Beavers last term and they will team up again. Ian Gayle adds more strength to the back line from Wealdstone and winger Nicky Wheeler comes in from Billericay Town. Christian Jolley was given his break in 2009 by Alan Dowson at Kingstonian, they now pair up again. Jolley went on to play for AFC Wimbledon, Newport County, Forest Green Rovers, Grimsby Town then Margate. Max Kretzschmar returns to the Cards after one season with Hampton and Richmond Borough, where he scored 14 goals in 39 league appearances last season. Striker, Jake Hyde made 130 appearances in the Football League for Barnet, York City, and Stevenage. Last season Hyde played for Maidenhead United in the National League. Former Burgess Hill Town striker, Greg Luer spent more than three years with Hull City making eight appearances. Loan spells in League One with Port Vale and Scunthorpe United, and League Two with Stevenage followed and now he is at Woking.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 4 / Woking wins: 5 / Draws: 2

Previous Meetings

03.03.2015 Dartford 1 Woking 3
12.08.2014 Woking 1 Dartford 1
18.02.2014 Dartford 5 Woking 1
12.11.2013 Woking 3 Dartford 0
01.04.2013 Dartford 4 Woking 1
14.08.2010 Woking 1 Dartford 0

Next Meetings

Saturday 1 December 2018 at Kingsfield

Saturday 23 February 2019 at Princes Park

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Dartford v Welling United

Dartford begin the New Year top of the National South and will look to maintain their position in the league when they host Welling United.

The New Year’s Day clash comes just six days after the Darts recorded a dramatic victory against the Wings in the reverse fixture. A spectacular injury time winner by former Welling United striker, Alfie Pavey decided the local derby in style.

In fact, the 3-2 victory was full of ex-players coming back to haunt their club. The scoring was opened on just three minutes by an unmarked Andy Pugh, after a cross from Ryan Hayes. The former Welling United frontman then made it 2-0 ten minutes into the second half, again Hayes supplying the cross for Pugh to tap home.

Welling United hit back with thirteen minutes to go when former Dart, Callum Driver scored a free-kick from just outside the area. Then Dartford threw their two-goal advantage away when captain Elliot Bradbrook upended brother Tom, another ex-Dart, to concede a penalty. Up stepped Jeffrey Monakana to level the score with just three minutes on the clock. In the third minute of injury time Pavey produced a moment to saviour as he scissor-kicked the winner in front of the jubilant away following.

Dartford’s first win against the Wings at Park View Road since 1983 secured top spot at the end of 2017. Victory ensured the Darts have a two-point cushion over Havant and Waterlooville and Chelmsford City, although both sides have a game in hand.

After the Boxing Day fixture, both managers spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk to give their reaction, Tony Burman commented: “I think we deserved to win the game. When we went 2-0 up we had a couple of other opportunities to increase the lead”, he added: “We were dead and buried when it went 2-2. We gave away two silly fouls and they’ve scored from a free-kick and a penalty. Defensively I thought we were reasonable but something like that changes things”.

Burman also justified his recent team selections specifically the games that top scorer and match winner Alfie Pavey has missed through a chest infection, he commented: “Believe you me, I will make him a lot better than what he is doing. He has got my belief and regardless of whether he has been playing or not, I’ve got to manage him in the way I think is right”, he added: “He is a young, good lad who has done ever so well for us. He has had some problems in the last month and I’m going to manage them problems the best way I can”.

Welling United player manager, Jamie Coyle was disappointed with defeat but pleased with the character shown by his players, and the improvement made after the 4-1 loss against Chelmsford City, he said: “After what happened on Saturday, we could have crumbled after going 1-0 down so early”, he continued: “We stuck at it, and I thought all over the pitch we more than competed and were the better team for the majority of the game. In both boxes, they defended really well and put their chances away”.

Coyle, another former Dart was unable to play due to illness despite looking forward to the fixture. Meanwhile, Bradley Goldberg was substituted at half-time due to an injury to his hamstring.

With Dartford in pole position going into the New Year, Burman feels his squad can kick on after decent performances against Boreham Wood, Braintree Town and now Welling United, he said: “We’re pleased with where we are. We realise we want to kick-start the season and we might just do that with what happened at the end of the Welling United game, he continued: “We know we’ve got to be professional and consistent and get four or five wins on the bounce. If we do that then that group (at the top of the league) will get smaller and it will help us hopefully to pull away from them”.

Head to Head
Welling United wins: 7 / Dartford wins: 17 / Draws: 10

Current League Form

Dartford (WDLWDW) Welling United (LLLDDW)
Welling United A 3-2 Dartford H 2-3
Braintree Town H 1-1 Chelmsford City A 1-4
Hungerford Town A 0-1 East Thurrock United H 0-3
Poole Town A 1-0 Hemel Hempstead Town A 2-2
Wealdstone H 3-3 Concord Rangers H 3-3
Gloucester City H 4-1 St Albans City A 2-1

Previous Meetings

26.12.2017 Welling United 2 Dartford 3
28.02.2017 Welling United 0 Dartford 0
22.11.2016 Welling United 2 Dartford 2
06.09.2016 Dartford 2 Welling United 1
19.10.2015 Dartford 3 Welling United 1
11.11.2014 Dartford 2 Welling United 1

Stats
It’s been 16 years since the Darts won on New Year’s Day when they beat Sittingbourne 5-2 in the Southern League Division One East. Since then, Dartford have lost five out of six and drew the other, including the defeat to Welling United in 2011.

Dartford have won four of the last five matches against the Wings at Princes Park.

If selected, Andy Pugh will make his 100th start for Dartford.

In 2017, Dartford collected 85 points in 44 games averaging at 1.93 points per game. Only on one occasion would that points average be enough to win the National South. Bromley won the title in 2014/15 with 77 points from 40 games.

On This Day
Dartford have won one New Year’s Day fixture since reforming and that was the 5-2 victory against Sittingbourne in 2001. That was the start of seven away days in a row on this day which has resulted in one draw and five defeats. The draw came in 2013 against Ebbsfleet United when the Darts conceded a last minute equaliser. Jon Wallis scored a free kick before Harry Crawford doubled the lead, Nathan Elder netted both goals for the Fleet. The last home match at home on the 1 January was in 1999, which saw Dartford draw 0-0 with Margate in the Southern League South Division and five years before that the Darts lost 3-2 at home to Alma Swanley.

Welling United v Dartford

Tony Burman will come up against a former player in the dugout when the Darts take on local rivals on Boxing Day.

Dartford will make the short journey to Park View Road to play Welling United, managed by Jamie Coyle. The Wings boss made 140 appearances for the Darts and was part of the team that won the Isthmian Division One North and Isthmian Premier leagues, in 2008 and 2010. The ex-Dartford defender is making a good start to his managerial career with his side currently eleventh in the National South four points off a playoff spot.

The Darts took four points from Welling United last term with the away match ending in a 0-0 draw back in February. It was the fourth time in a row at Park View Road that the two sides shared the points in the league. In September 2014, the National League meeting ended 2-2 with the Darts equalising on both occasions. Harry Beautyman put the Wings ahead but Peter Sweeney levelled for Dartford. The game was just 14 minutes old when Jamal Fyfield scored again for Welling United, but for the second time Elliot Bradbrook squared up the score.

Eight months previous, early goals settled another draw this time Dartford loanee Jim Stevenson had the visitors in front. However, Ross Lafayette’s penalty eight minutes later secured a 1-1 draw. The Boxing Day fixture six years ago also ended up 1-1 on a dramatic afternoon. Lee Clarke opened the scoring for Welling United and after Joe Healy was sent off it looked like the Wings would hold on. In the last minute, Clarke had the chance to secure victory but missed his penalty, then Dartford went down the other end and Lee Noble headed in the equaliser.

After taking on Braintree Town on the weekend, in a match that saw the top two battle it out, Welling United will provide a different test for the Darts. Burman spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk and said: “Welling are going through a transitional period but with all due respect to them, it’s a period at the right end of the table”, the Dartford boss added: “They’ve got players who we know and vice-versa, it will about what happens on the day”, he continued: “The bragging rights are there, it’s not the be all and end all but it’s nice to pick up the points over the Christmas period”.

Braintree Town started Saturday’s game well looking to build from the back and put the Darts under pressure. However, against the run of play some great work from Tom Murphy on the left saw him cross the ball to Andy Pugh who tapped in the opener on 17 minutes. The Darts grew into the first half after the goal until their opponents tried to get back on level terms, which they managed from a counter attack finished off by Marcel Barrington on the stroke of half time. The second half played out with no further goals and left the Darts clinging on to top spot on goal difference, level with four other teams on 39 points.

Burman commented after the game courtesy of www.kentonline.co.uk: “Hopefully we can get the few wins together we need but nothing happens in December, nothing happens in January. You’ve got to keep up there among the pack”, he added: “If we make a gap, great, but it just doesn’t work like that sometimes”.

Alex Brown served his one match suspension against the Iron and will be available for selection. Nathan Collier made his first start since returning to the Darts taking Brown’s place in midfield. Former Welling United striker Alfie Pavey has been named on the bench since returning from a chest infection, Burman said when speaking to www.kentonline.co.uk: “It’s well-publicised that Alfie’s had some breathing problems over the last few weeks, which has hampered him when the weather’s got cold”.

One of the outstanding players so far this campaign, Lee Noble was also left on the bench with Burman confirming to www.kentonline.co.uk: “”When I got here, he was out doing the warm-up,” he said. “He’s come through the warm-up on his own and I decided to put him on the bench. When he did the warm-up with the players, he’s come back in and his calf stiffened up so we had a little problem there”.

Meanwhile, Welling United were at title challengers Chelmsford City on the weekend and a costly start made the afternoon difficult for the Wings. After just a couple of minutes the Clarets were in front when Matthew Johnson scored for the hosts. Former Dart, Luke Daley volleyed home a second after six minutes and Kudus Onyenuga made it 3-0 before the half was over. Chris Dicksom added a fourth in the second half and Welling United’s Bradley Goldberg scored a consolation.

The Wings have won once in their last five outings which has seen them drop slightly off the playoff pace. Over September and October they managed a run of six wins from seven games which put the amongst the crowded field. Joe Healy is their main marksman this term with nine National South goals, whilst former Darts, Coyle and Tom Bradbrook have four goals each. Brother of Dartford captain Elliot, Tom last played at the beginning of the month in Welling United’s 2-2 draw with Truro City, the striker who made 103 appearances for Dartford and scored 24 times, wasn’t in the squad for the Wings defeat at Chelmsford City.

Head to Head
Welling United wins: 7 / Dartford wins: 17 / Draws: 10

Current League Form

Dartford (DLWDWL) Welling United (LLDDWL)
Braintree Town H 1-1 Chelmsford City A 1-4
Hungerford Town A 0-1 East Thurrock United H 0-3
Poole Town A 1-0 Hemel Hempstead Town A 2-2
Wealdstone H 3-3 Concord Rangers H 3-3
Gloucester City H 4-1 St Albans City A 2-1
Truro City A 1-3 Wealdstone H 1-2

Previous Meetings

28.02.2017 Welling United 0 Dartford 0
22.11.2016 Welling United 2 Dartford 2
06.09.2016 Dartford 2 Welling United 1
19.10.2015 Dartford 3 Welling United 1
11.11.2014 Dartford 2 Welling United 1
30.09.2014 Welling United 2 Dartford 2

Stats
Dartford’s last league victory at Welling United was in 1983. The Darts won 4-0 and since then have lost one and drawn the last four.

Over 90 minutes, Dartford are unbeaten in seven against the Wings. The Darts have lost just once in their last 13 against Welling United. Including the penalty shoot out loss in last season’s Kent Senior Cup, then the Darts have lost twice in that time.

The Darts are clinging on to top spot and clinging on to the best attacking record. Dartford are still the top scorers with 44 goals, but Braintree Town and East Thurrock United are just one behind.

On This Day
This will be the sixteenth Boxing Day fixture for Dartford since reformation and their record stands at won six, drawn three, lost six. In the time, the Darts have beaten rivals Ebbsfleet United twice in 2012 and 2016. Harry Crawford’s brace and Elliot Bradbrook’s goal earned Dartford a 3-1 win in 2012. Four years later, Tom Bonner’s header against his former side and Duane Ofori-Acheampong’s strike gave the Darts a 2-1 victory. The biggest score was racked up in 2007 when Dartford beat Canvey Island 6-1 in an Isthmian Division One North fixture. On that day six different scorers helped the Darts to the three points, Steve Norman, Ryan Hayes, Brendon Cass, Jay May, Eddie McClements and Jamie Coyle.

National League South Season Preview 2017/18 – Part V

 Wealdstone | Welling United | Weston-super-Mare | Whitehawk

Wealdstone

Founded: 1889 / Ground: Vale Stadium

A late surge coupled with Poole Town and Hungerford Town unable to participate in the playoffs, almost saw the Stones sneak a shot at promotion. However, the Middlesex club were unable to nudge past Hampton and Richmond Borough so ended the campaign in a respectable eighth. Wealdstone will feel they have a greater chance this time around as the top seven will take part in the end of season playoffs.

Last Season

National North: 8th

F.A Cup: 4th Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 3rd Round

County Cup: Runners Up

League Top Scorer: Elliot Benyon (16 goals)

Average Attendance: 734 (5th in league / 43rd in non-league)

The Manager – Gordon Bartlett

The longest serving manager in the National South having joined the Stones in the Summer of 1995, playing in the Isthmian Division Three without a home. Bartlett was put under pressure last term but still managed to almost gatecrash the playoffs. An experienced manager with three promotions and an F.A Trophy semi-final appearance whilst with the Middlesex club, Bartlett’s chances of guiding Wealdstone to the National League have increased now finishing seventh is good enough to reach the playoffs.

The Summer

Experienced heads have been retained with the likes of Eddie Oshodi, Elliott Benyon and Ricky Wellard signing for another year. Former Dartford full back, Josh Hill made a switch from Chelmsford City, Shaquille Hippolyte-Patrick moved from Hampton and Richmond Borough and Jerome Okimo from Braintree Town. Looking towards the league’s below, Bartlett has also signed Benji Crilley from Chesham United and Abobaker Eisa from Uxbridge. Returning to action after time out from the game will be defender Liam Harwood.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 12 / Wealdstone wins: 13 / Draws: 12

Previous Meetings

28.01.2017 Wealdstone 0 Dartford 4
06.08.2016 Dartford 2 Wealdstone 2
26.01.2016 Dartford 1 Wealdstone 2
03.10.2015 Wealdstone 2 Dartford 1
21.02.2012 Wealdstone 1 Dartford 0
14.02.2012 Dartford 2 Wealdstone 2

Next Meetings

Saturday 4 November 2017 at Princes Park

Saturday 17 February 2018 at Vale Stadium

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Welling United

Founded: 1963 / Ground: Park View Road

Relegated to the National South just over a year ago, the Wings were probably expecting to perform better last season considering they gained three years National League experience. The goal scoring form of Adam Coombes who netted 20 times was missed in the latter stages of the campaign. Stability is a word the Wings would welcome after managers have been and gone over the last year.

Last Season

National South: 16th

F.A Cup: 4th Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 3rd Round

County Cup: Runners Up

League Top Scorer: Adam Coombes (20 goals)

Average Attendance: 536 (11th in league / 68th in non-league)

The Manager – Jamie Coyle

A former full back with Dartford, Coyle has been part of successful teams including the Darts title winning campaigns in 2008 and 2010 making 140 appearances under Tony Burman scoring 19 times. He also experienced promotion with Maidstone United and played for Welling United six years ago. Coyle started out coaching whilst with the Darts working with the academy and now he’ll be eager to impress in his first managerial role.

The Summer

Welling United will have a familiar look about them to Dartford fans. Coyle has kept in contact with his former club and signed Alfie Pavey and brought back Tom Bradbrook to the world of football, after his brief retirement. Chairman, Mark Goldberg will be overseeing his son’s progress as Bradley Goldberg joins from Bromley. Returning to Park View Road will be Joe Healey and Jack Parkinson both previously with Dover Athletic. Conor Dymond also joins from Bromley whilst Jack Parter and Ian Gayle come in from Tonbridge Angels. After a spell in Ireland with Cork City, Cristian Nanetti signed to join the Wings squad.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 17 / Welling United wins: 7 / Draws: 10

Previous Meetings

28.02.2017 Welling United 0 Dartford 0
22.11.2016 Welling United 2 Dartford 2
06.09.2016 Dartford 2 Welling United 1
19.10.2015 Dartford 3 Welling United 1
11.11.2014 Dartford 2 Welling United 1
30.09.2014 Welling United 2 Dartford 2

Next Meetings

Tuesday 26 December 2017 at Park View Road

Monday 1 January 2018 at Princes Park

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Weston-super-Mare

Founded: 1887 / Ground: Woodspring Stadium

If there is one team guaranteed to be in the National South, it’s Weston-super-Mare. The only side to have taken part in every National South campaign since its creation in 2004. Apart from being reprieved on two occasions they have rarely threatened to leave the second tier of non-league. Last term they finished strongly rattling in the goals, but still finished in the bottom half.

Last Season

National South: 15th

F.A Cup: 2nd Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 3rd Qualifying Round

County Cup: Runners Up

League Top Scorer: Dayle Grubb (19 goals)

Average Attendance: 435 (15th in league / 91st in non-league)

The Manager – Marc McGregor

Excited by his new role as Seagulls boss, Marc McGregor returns to the Woodspring Stadium having played for the club. He’s been player coach at Worcester City and represented Oxford United and Notts County on the pitch too. After a spell at Forest Green Rovers McGregor earned a move to Queens Park Rangers but injury cut his full-time career short. The new Weston-super-Mare boss managed to have playing spells with Tamworth and Hinckley United before going into coaching.

The Summer

Danny Greenslade will be playing in Weston-super-Mare shirt after joining from Bristol Rovers. The Seagulls will miss Bradley Ash who was on loan from Barnsley last season and has returned to his parent club. It took a while for the summer activity to come to fruition and when it did the Seagulls secured the services of Jarrad Welch, Ben Seymour, Jake Mawford and Tristan Plummer.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 7 / Weston-Super-Mare wins: 2 /  Draws: 4

Previous Meetings

17.01.2017 Dartford 3 Weston-Super-Mare 2
26.11.2016 Weston-Super-Mare 2 Dartford 4
20.08.2016 Weston-Super-Mare 1 Dartford 2
05.03.2016 Weston-Super-Mare 2 Dartford 1
13.09.2015 Dartford 2 Weston-Super-Mare 1
12.11.2011 Dartford 1 Weston-Super-Mare 1

Next Meetings

Saturday 23 September 2017 at Woodspring Stadium

Saturday 7 April 2018 at Princes Park

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Whitehawk

Founded: 1945 / Ground: Enclosed Ground

Tough times have hot the Sussex club highlighted by the managerial merry-go-round last season. The Hawks went through five managers and almost 50 players last term alone. For a club that made F.A Cup headlines just over a year ago, Whitehawk have fallen rapidly with a former club president imprisoned and rumours of cashflow issues. The 2014/15 playoff runners up hit their peak in that season almost making it four promotions in six campaigns, now progress has halted the Sussex club need to find stability.

Last Season

National South: 17th

F.A Cup: 1st Round

F.A Trophy: 2nd Round

County Cup: Quarter Final

League Top Scorer: Danny Mills (16 goals)

Average Attendance: 297 (21st in league / 139th in non-league)

The Manager – Jimmy Dack

A former midfielder who knows his way around the non-league scene, Jimmy Dack spent his playing days in Surry and Hampshire with Sutton United, Carshalton Athletic, Aldershot Town and Farnborough Town. Spells in Sussex with Crawley Town means he has already travelled most of the Southern counties. Dack was appointed in January after being Andy Woodman’s assistant and he will be hoping to last longer than the last four managers of the Hawks.

The Summer

The loss of top striker Danny Mills is a huge blow for Whitehawk, the 26 year old has joined Ebbsfleet United. Experienced midfielder Sergio Torres leaves for Eastbourne Borough and Michael West has gone to Chelmsford City along with Elliot Omozusi. Academy players have been given the opportunity with no less than seven under 18’s joining the senior squad, perhaps a sign of the budget cuts at the Enclosed Ground. Connor Tighe has signed from Brighton and Hove Albion, Alex Tokarczyk from Basingstoke Town and Ed Sanders from Gosport Borough. Boosting the squad number another four signed, defenders Tom Cadnam and Ed Wakley as well as forwards Papa Gueye and Bayan Fenwick joined the list of Hawks players.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 3 /Whitehawk wins: 3 / Draws: 0

Previous Meetings

04.02.2017 Dartford 3 Whitehawk 1
10.08.2016 Whitehawk 1 Dartford 0
12.03.2016 Dartford 2 Whitehawk 4
19.12.2015 Whitehawk 0 Dartford 1
28.11.2015 Dartford 1 Whitehawk 2
04.09.1982 Dartford 5 Whitehawk 2

Next Meetings

Tuesday 5 September 2017 at Enclosed Ground

Saturday 27 January 2018 at Princes Park

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Welling United v Dartford

Dartford continue to defend their Kent Senior Cup title and will reach the last eight if they beat Welling United.

For the second year in a row the Darts take on the Wings in the county cup. Last season, Dartford started their run to the final with a 3-1 victory over Welling United in round one. In a dominant display, the Darts were forced to wait until the second half when goals from George Sykes, Callum McNaughton and Dajon Golding helped Dartford progress.

This term Tony Burman has already led his side to all four Kent derby victories and Welling United were one of those teams that suffered. A late Elliot Bradbrook winner, after the captain had earlier missed a penalty secured three points. Alex Brown had put the Darts in front by netting the rebound from the spot kick before Welling United’s Adam Coombes scored a free kick.

In the last round, Dartford overcame Cray Wanderers with Burman admitting his side had not reached fifth gear. Falling behind, the Darts were made to work hard for victory, which they managed thanks to goals by Andy Pugh and Duane Ofori-Acheampong.

The Darts remain on excellent form in the league and on the weekend moved into the playoff places with a comfortable 3-0 win at bottom of the table side Bishop’s Stortford. An own goal got Dartford moving and from that moment they didn’t look back. Pugh notched his fourth league goal of the season and Elliot Bradbrook moved on to 11 in all competitions.

Keaton Wood missed the win against Bishop’s Stortford through illness but goalkeeper Deren Ibrahim returned from international duty. Dartford’s number one set a milestone reaching 100 appearances for the club having graduated from the academy.

Welling United’s first campaign since returning to the National South has been a season of struggle so far. Occupying a relegation place at the moment, the Wings are second from bottom and four points adrift of safety. The Wings have lost their last three league matches with the most recent against Hampton and Richmond Borough.

In the previous round Welling United brushed aside Isthmian Division One South side Chatham Town. The away tie became a formality when Dan Walker scored a hat-trick and further goals by Jonte Smith, Lyle Della-Verde and Josh Jackson secured a 6-1 win.

Head to Head
Welling United wins: 6 / Dartford wins: 17 / Draws: 9

Previous Meetings
Dartford 2 Welling United 1 (06/09/2016 – National South)
Dartford 3 Welling United 1 (19/10/2015 – Kent Senior Cup)
Dartford 2 Welling United 1 (11/11/2014 – National League)
Welling United 2 Dartford 2 (30/09/2014 – National League)
Welling United 1 Dartford 1 (10/01/2014 – National League)
Dartford 1 Welling United 2 (26/12/2013 – National League)

Current Form (all competitions)
Welling United (LLLDLL)
Lost 1-3 v Hampton and Richmond Borough (A)
Lost 0-1 v Hungerford Town (A)
Lost 1-2 v Ebbsfleet United (H)
Drew 1-1 v Gosport Borough (A)
Lost 0-1 v Wealdstone (A)
Lost 1-2 v Whitehawk (H)

Dartford (WWLLWW)
Won 3-0 v Bishop’s Stortford (A)
Won 2-0 v Hemel Hempstead Town (H)
Lost 0-2 v St Albans City (H)
Lost 3-6 v Sutton United (H) – F.A Cup
Won 1-0 v Oxford City (H)
Won 1-0 v Bath City (A)

On This Day
Dartford have to look back 28 years to find their last win on 22 November. In 1988, a Southern League Cup second round tie against Crawley Town ended in a convincing 4-0 victory. Since then, three defeats and two draws later leave Dartford still waiting. A F.A Cup first round replay in 1989 versus Football League side Exeter City ended 4-1, but the Darts pushed them close in the original tie in front of over 3000 supporters. Losses against King’s Lynn (4-1 in 2003) and Lincoln City (1-0 in 2014) came either side of the two draws versus Wivenhoe Town in 2005 and St Albans City in 2008.

Dartford v Welling United

Dartford are back in mid week action with their first Kent derby of the season against Welling United.

Recovering from their disappointment at Hampton and Richmond Borough, the Darts drew 0-0 with league leaders Maidenhead United on the weekend. Tony Burman was pleased with his team’s response, helped by a third home clean sheet in a row to keep their unbeaten run at Princes Park intact.

Burman told www.kentonline.co.uk after the game: “After Monday we kept a clean sheet, defensively we were a lot better”, he added: “I just feel that we’ve got to keep listening and working hard and encouraging the good performances, and the quality there is in the team”.

Ronnie Vint was ruled out again when officials felt his cast on his wrist was not suitable. To add to the injury concerns, Keaton Wood was substituted after a quarter of an hour and Lee Noble missed out entirely.
Welling United have started life back in the National South poorly up until the weekend. With a few changes in the squad, the Wings breezed to a 5-0 win away to Concord Rangers. Their first victory of the campaign was helped by Adam Coombes’ second half hat-trick.

Recently, the Darts spent two seasons with the Wings in the National League until relegation to the National South two years ago. Whilst Welling United stayed in the top flight of non league for another year, they soon followed when they finished bottom last term.

In those two campaigns both sides have shared a win as well as two draws. The last meeting in 2014 ended with Dartford on top in a 2-1 victory at Princes Park. Max Cornhill and Harry Crawford gave Tony Burman’s side a two goal advantage but late on Welling United rallied. After Jake Gallagher’s dismissal, Harry Beautyman halved the deficit for the ten men. The Wings ended the evening with only nine when Chris Bush was also sent off.

Welling United won by the same score almost a year earlier at Princes Park coming from a goal down. Lee Burns had Dartford ahead by half time but late goals from Ross Lafayette and a winner from Kurtis Guthrie stunned the home crowd. The two away fixtures at Park View Road, one of Dartford’s former homes ended in a 1-1 and 2-2 draw.

The two clubs also spent a couple of season’s at National South level between 2010 and 2012. Coincidentally both teams shared a win and two draws in that time as well. At home the Darts drew 1-1 and won 1-0 but lost 2-1 and drew 1-1 away.

Including two Kent Senior Cup victories each in the last ten years then it’s difficult to split the two sides on head to head record. However, a Playoff final triumph for Dartford in 2012 gives the Darts the slightest of edges.

Since last season’s relegation, the Wings made plenty of changes in the summer yet they have struggled to recover. Former Bromley boss, Mark Goldberg has been unable to recreate his success in the non league management so far. Goldberg took Bromley up to the National League as champions but life at Welling United has been tougher. Even after a summer of change the Wings manager has already brought in three more players and let two others leave.

One face familiar to the Darts is striker Harry Crawford. The 24 year old now plays for the Wings and after leaving Princes Park has struggled to settle down. At Dartford he impressed in his debut season scoring 16 goals in 32 games to earn a move to Football League side Barnet. Crawford returned on loan before re-joining the Darts for the 2014/15 campaign where he scored seven in 39 appearances. The Irishman has since had spells with Boreham Wood, St Albans City and Dover Athletic before signing for Welling United this summer.

Current League Form (last six games)

Dartford (DLWWDD) Welling United (WLDLDL)
Maidenhead United H 0-0 Concord Rangers A 5-0
Hampton & Richmond A 1-4 Chelmsford City H 0-2
Hungerford Town H 2-0 Truro City A 1-1
Weston-super-Mare A 2-1 St Albans City H 0-1
Gosport Borough H 0-0 East Thurrock United A 1-1
Chelmsford City A 1-1 Weston-super-Mare H 0-2

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 16 / Welling United wins: 6 / Draws: 9

Previous Meetings

19.10.2015 Dartford 3 Welling United 1
11.11.2014 Dartford 2 Welling United 1
30.09.2014 Welling United 2 Dartford 2
10.01.2014 Welling United 1 Dartford 1
26.12.2013 Dartford 1 Welling United 2
03.09.2013 Welling United 2 Dartford 3

Stats

Dartford are unbeaten in their last four games against Welling United and have only tasted defeat once in the last ten.

The Darts have scored in each of their last 12 meetings versus Welling United. The last time the Dartford failed to score was ten years ago in a 3-0 Kent Senior Cup loss. In league football the scoring run goes back to 1983 spanning ten league matches.

Dartford have gone six matches without a clean sheet against the Wings, the last clean sheet was in the 1-0 National South playoff final win in 2012.

On This Day

Rarely has their been a Dartford match on 6 September, although the last one was only two years ago. The Darts travelled to Altrincham for the first time in nearly thirty years only to lose 2-1. Newly promoted as National North champions, Damian Reeves scored a brace before Elliot Bradbrook pulled one back. The last victory on this day came in 1989 when the Darts beat Corby Town 2-1 in the Southern Premier League.

National League South Season Preview 2016/2017 – (Final Part)

Wealdstone | Welling United | Weston-Super-Mare | Whitehawk

Wealdstone

Founded: 1899 / Ground: The Vale Stadium

The draw specialists of the National South were difficult to beat last season, the Stones lost the same as promoted Maidstone United but only bottom side Basingstoke Town won fewer. A slow start last term left the Middlesex club second from bottom with just a point in their opening six fixtures. The next seven matches set the tone for the rest of the season when they won four and drew three leaving them in mid-table for the remainder of their campaign. 

wealdstoneLast Season

National South: 13th

F.A Cup: 1st Round

F.A Trophy: 1st Round

County Cup: 2nd Round

League Top Scorer: Bradley Hudson-Odoi (11 goals)

The Manager – Gordon Bartlett

Wealdstone were homeless when Gordon Bartlett took charge in June 1995 and playing in the Isthmian Division Three. The long serving manager won back to back promotions and was denied a third consecutive one due to the standards of the ground the Stones were sharing. Bartlett was in charge when the Middlesex club returned home in 2008 and since then guided them to a F.A Trophy semi-final and two playoff semi-final defeats. Finally, Bartlett won another title to earn promotion to the National South where Wealdstone finished twelfth in the first season and fifteenth last term. Now about to begin his twenty second season with the Stones, Bartlett is by far the longest serving manager currently in the National South. 

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 11 / Wealdstone wins: 13 / Draws: 11

Previous Meetings

26.01.2016 Dartford 1 Wealdstone 2
03.10.2015 Wealdstone 2 Dartford 1
21.02.2012 Wealdstone 1 Dartford 0
14.02.2012 Dartford 2 Wealdstone 2
20.04.2010 Wealdstone 1 Dartford 1
29.08.2009 Dartford 1 Wealdstone 1

Next Meetings

Saturday 6 August 2016 at Princes Park

Saturday 28 January 2017 at the Vale Stadium

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Welling United

Founded: 1963 / Ground: Park View Road

When the Wings won four National League games in a row at the end of September, Welling United thought the tide had turned. The Kent club were second from bottom but pulled themselves out of trouble temporarily. In truth, the victories masked a season of struggle. From their highest point of the campaign the Wings slumped into the relegation zone and went on a 23 match winless run. The Kent club finished five points adrift at the bottom of the National League and ended up fourteen points shy of safety. They now return to the National South after a three year absence. 

Last SeasonWelling

National League: 24th

F.A Cup: 2nd Round

F.A Trophy: 2nd Round

County Cup: 1st Round

League Top Scorer: Sahr Kabba (6 goals)

The Manager – Mark Goldberg

Once owner now manager, Mark Goldberg purchased Crystal Palace in the mid-nineties only for the adventure to end in administration. Since then he has managed Bromley on three occasions and is their most successful manager taking them to the National League. The winner of three senior cups, Goldberg won promotion with Bromley via the Isthmian Premier playoffs and as champions of the National South. In his second spell he left due to an internal disagreement but was brought back when a new Chairman was appointed. In February, Goldberg decided to step down under pressure from Bromley’s owners. Towards the end of Welling United’s campaign in last season’s National League, Goldberg was in charge and now he will be aiming for immediate return to the top flight of non league with the Wings. 

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 16 / Welling United wins: 6 / Draws: 9

Previous Meetings

19.10.2015 Dartford 3 Welling United 1
11.11.2014 Dartford 2 Welling United 1
30.09.2014 Welling United 2 Dartford 2
10.01.2014 Welling United 1 Dartford 1
26.12.2013 Dartford 1 Welling United 2
03.09.2013 Welling United 2 Dartford 3

Next Meetings

Tuesday 6 September 2016 at Princes Park

Saturday 21 January 2017 at Park View Road

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Weston-Super-Mare

Founded: 1887 / Ground: Woodspring Stadium

The Seagulls looked nailed on relegation candidates halfway through November. Weston-Super-Mare had won just three of their opening sixteen games sinking to second from bottom. Suddenly, the Seagulls found their scoring boots in a nine match unbeaten run including three 3-2 wins, a 5-2 and 4-1 triumph and an incredible 5-5 draw with Hemel Hempstead Town. Although the Somerset side returned to inconsistency they ended the campaign strongly beating runners up Ebbsfleet United then winning five of their last seven fixtures. 

Weston-super-Mare_AFC_logoLast Season

Conference South: 16th

F.A Cup: 4th Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 2nd Round

County Cup: Semi-final

League Top Scorer: Scott Wilson (19 goals)

The Manager – Ryan Northmore

A rookie compared to the majority of the managers in the National South, Ryan Northmore has playing history with the Seagulls as a goalkeeper. Making over 200 appearances for Weston-Super-Mare he won Player of the Year for three consecutive seasons for the club. Initially drafted in as Caretaker Manager when the Seagulls were in the middle of an eight match losing streak, the 35 year old steadied the sinking ship earning his role permanently. Last term was the former Torquay United goalkeeper’s first full season. After a tricky opening to the campaign he managed to guide the Seagulls one position higher than the previous year. 

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 4 / Weston-Super-Mare wins: 2 /  Draws: 4

Previous Meetings 

05.03.2016 Weston-Super-Mare 2 Dartford 1
13.09.2015 Dartford 2 Weston-Super-Mare 1
12.11.2011 Dartford 1 Weston-Super-Mare 1
13.08.2011 Weston-Super-Mare 0 Dartford 4
08.02.2011 Weston-Super-Mare 0 Dartford 1
04.09.2010 Dartford 4 Weston-Super-Mare 1

Next Meetings

Saturday 20 August 2016 at Woodspring Stadium

Saturday 14 January 2017 at Princes Park

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Whitehawk

Founded: 1945 / Ground: Enclosed Ground

A 6-0 win in October over St Albans City put Whitehawk in a strong position, third place after a dozen games and just one loss. An entertaining 5-3 F.A Cup win over Lincoln City followed by a 1-1 draw away to Dagenham and Redbridge in the next round, the Hawks were gaining national coverage then they drew Everton. Unfortunately, the Sussex club lost the replay and during the cup run league form dipped. After the second round exit, the Hawks went nine games without victory. At the start of April, Whitehawk had seven fixtures to fulfil and were in fifteenth, and then they pulled the trick out of the hat. Winning six of their last seven, dropping just two points they grabbed the final playoff spot only to lose on penalties to Ebbsfleet United in the semi-final. 

Whitehawk_F.C._logoLast Season

National South: 5th

F.A Cup: 2nd Round

F.A Trophy: 1st Round

County Cup: Semi-final

League Top Scorer: Danny Mills (23 goals)

The Manager – Pablo Asensio

Born in Argentina and a former professional footballer, it is no surprise Asensio will call upon his knowledge of South American football when recruiting for Whitehawk. The former midfielder took his coaching badges in England and held roles at Droylsden and Accrington Stanley. The 43 year old became an observer to Gus Poyet at Leeds United and Tottenham Hotspur, briefly managed in the Spanish Segunda División B and continued his learning in the North West with Southport, who he took to seventh in the National League. Asensio didn’t have to move far for his next job when he joined Macclesfield Town but now he will work on the South Coast with Whitehawk, where he was Caretaker manager last term.

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 2 /Whitehawk wins: 2 / Draws: 0

Previous Meetings 

12.03.2016 Dartford 2 Whitehawk 4
19.12.2015 Whitehawk 0 Dartford 1
28.11.2015 Dartford 1 Whitehawk 2
04.09.1982 Dartford 5 Whitehawk 2

Next Meetings

Wednesday 10 August 2016 at Enclosed Ground

Saturday 4 February 2017 at Princes Park

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Dartford v Welling United

Kent Senior Cup football returns to Princes Park this evening with Dartford hosting three times winners Welling United.

The Darts are bidding to add their eleventh title in this competition, having last won the honours just over four years ago. Victory will be rewarded with a home tie in round two against League One side Gillingham, who knocked Dartford out of the competition last term.

With the first team in action on the weekend against Hemel Hempstead Town, Tony Burman should get a good chance to look towards the future by playing a number of academy prospects. Likewise, Welling United boss Loui Fazakerley has seen his side play twice in a week and could well take the same approach.

Two seasons ago, the Darts beat Welling United at the same stage of the Kent Senior Cup in an entertaining 3-2 win. A young Dartford side took the lead through Mohamed Eisa’s deflected shot, in the second half Loick Pires equalised for Welling United. Dartford opened up a two goal cushion late on when Alex Woodyard scored a free kick and Brima Daramy made it 3-1. Current Wings boss Fazakerley grabbed a consolation but the Darts progressed. Dartford eventually reached the quarter-finals bowing out to Dover Athletic.

The two sides were close to meeting again this term in the National South. However, where the Darts were relegated from the National League, whilst Welling United survived on the final day.

Dartford’s season back in the National South had been mediocre up until the middle of September. Coupled with a shock F.A Cup exit and poor league form, the Darts need to pull together to get their campaign back on track.

Welling United’s league season got off to a slow start despite an opening day win. The Wings then went on a nine game winless streak leaving them in the bottom four. Fortunes turned around with four consecutive wins over Gateshead, Chester, FC Halifax Town and Kidderminster Harriers. However, Fazakerley’s side have been unable to build on their purple patch with two defeats, a win and draw since.

Head to Head (all competitions)

Dartford wins: 15 / Welling United wins: 6 / Draws: 9

Head to Head (Kent Senior Cup)

Dartford wins: 7 / Welling United wins: 3 / Draws: 1

Kent Senior Cup – last ten years

Dartford Welling United
2014/15 Second Round  First Round
2013/14 Quarter Final  First Round
2012/13 Second Round  Second Round
2011/12  Runners Up  Quarter Final
2010/11  Winners  First Round
2009/10  First Round  Semi Final
2008/09  First Round  Winners
2007/08  First Round  First Round
2006/07  Second Round  Quarter Final
2005/06  First Round  Quarter Final

Stats

Dartford’s home record against the Wings is won eight, drawn three and lost three.

The Darts have never scored more than two goals against Welling United at home.

Dartford have lost once in their last nine competitive fixtures against Welling United, winning four and drawing four.

On their travels Welling United have the joint worst attack with only four goals in the National League this season.

On This Day

It’s been 24 years since Dartford’s last defeat on 19 October with two wins and four draws since. The last victory in dramatic fashion against Hyde. On loan Matt Godden scored the late winner to complete his hat-trick in a 4-3 win. Clevedon Town were beaten 3-1 in the Southern League Southern division. Between those two triumphs, the Darts drew 1-1 with Sittingbourne in the Kent Senior Cup first round in 1999. Three years later the same scoreline was recorded away to Fisher Athletic and in 2004 a 2-2 draw was earned against Aveley, both in the Southern League Division One Eastern.

Dartford v Welling United

A second Kent derby in three days awaits the Darts as they host local rivals Welling United for this season’s return league fixture.

What has become the usual festive match in recent season’s will have already taken place before December begins. Dartford know crucial points can be picked up against their fellow part time opponents and hope to record their first home league win since mid September. Tony Burman’s side can leap above Welling United, and potentially Kent rivals Dover Athletic, with a win to climb out the relegation zone.

Six weeks has passed since the last meeting between the two sides which ended in a 2-2 draw, full back Tom Bender made his first start for the club that day. An entertaining first half ended level with Welling United taking the lead on six minutes. Ben Jefford’s cross was nudged beyond Jason Brown by Harry Beautyman, but the lead lasted just three minutes. Peter Sweeney scored his first goal for the club and Dartford’s maiden first half strike of the season. The Wings went ahead once more when Jamal Fyfield headed in Beautyman’s cross to leave the Darts a goal down. Yet again, Dartford fought back and a trio of long throw in’s by Mat Mitchel-King put the hosts under pressure, Elliot Bradbrook benefited the most when he hit he’s fourth of the season.

The Darts remain in the bottom four after a 3-0 away loss to play off chasing Grimsby Town in their last league fixture. Once more, Dartford found the away trip to Blundell Park tough and were a goal down after 13 minutes. Defender Carl Magnay scored from close range taking advantage of Nathan Arnold’s cross. Seven minutes before the break Arnold turned from provider to goal getter as he doubled the Mariners lead. With three minutes to go the Darts conceded a sixth penalty of the season. Lennell John-Lewis converted from the spot like he did at Princes Park just over a month ago. Although Lee Burns remain sidelined through injury, striker Tom Bradbrook made his first appearance since 11 October.

Defeat in Lincolnshire has left Dartford winless in the last six league outings having picked up four points in those games. At Princes Park three consecutive 1-1 league draws against Grimsby Town, Macclesfield Town and Aldershot Town mean Burman’s team are unbeaten in four competitive matches at home, including the F.A Cup fourth qualifying round win against Burgess Hill Town.

Welling United have picked up just four away points this term out of a possible 27. Victory at Altrincham and a draw at Chester are the only highlights having lost the other seven. The Wings have yet to be defeated by a team sitting lower than them in the Conference Premier, but have lost there last two matches.

The latest loss came in the last minute at Park View Road versus runaway league leaders Barnet. Former Ebbsfleet United frontman John Akinde caused the Wings all sorts of trouble and opened the scoring half way through the first period. Just before the interval Joe Healy pounced on Graham Stack’s fumble to level the score. In the final minute Charlie MacDonald nodded the ball into the path of Akinde who kept his composure to snatch a winner.

Jamie Day’s side had previously travelled to Haig Avenue in the league where Southport ran out 1-0 winners. Including all competitive matches then Welling United have lost three in a row after a shock F.A Cup fourth qualifying round exit to Maidstone United. Former Wings captain Jack Parkinson scored against his old side to help the Stones into round one and a tie against Stevenage.

Since the last meeting against Welling United, Day has captured the loan signing of Michael Chambers from Premier League side Crystal Palace. The tall defender was signed by the Eagles from Isthmian Premier League club Dulwich Hamlet. The Darts may also face Liechtenstein’s international goalkeeper Benji Buchel, the 25 year old has won eight caps for his country and will be on loan from AFC Bournemouth until January.

Head to Head 

Dartford wins: 15 / Welling United wins: 9 / Draws: 7

Current League Form

Dartford (LDDLDD) Welling United (LLWLDD)
Grimsby Town A 0-3 Barnet H 1-2
Aldershot Town H 1-1 Southport A 0-1
Macclesfield Town H 1-1 Nuneaton Town H 4-1
Bristol Rovers A 0-1 Kidderminster Harriers A 1-2
Grimsby Town H 1-1 Chester A 1-1
Welling United A 2-2 Dartford H 2-2

Last League Meeting at Princes Park

26 December 2013 – Dartford 1 Welling United 2 – Att: 1758

Goalscorer: Burns (29), Lafayette (74), Guthrie (80)

Dartford Lineup: Julian, Clark, Sterling, Mitchel-King, Burns, Stevenson, Martin, Collier, Bradbrook, Cornhill, Birchall (subs used: Woodyard, Kamara, Scantlebury)

Welling United Lineup: Butcher, Franks, Bergqvist, Vanderhyde, Cargill, Beautyman, Healy, Day, Clarke, Cumbers, Lafayette (subs used: McLaren, Bassele, Guthrie)

Match Stats

dartford v welling stats

Previous Ten Meetings (* – Kent Senior Cup / ** – Conference South Playoff Final)

30.09.2014 Welling United 2 Dartford 2
10.01.2014 Welling United 1 Dartford 1
26.12.2013 Dartford 1 Welling United 2
03.09.2013* Welling United 2 Dartford 3
13.05.2012** Dartford 1 Welling United 0
02.01.2012 Dartford 1 Welling United 0
26.12.2011 Welling United 1 Dartford 1
15.02.2011 Dartford 1 Welling United 1
01.01.2011 Welling United 2 Dartford 1
26.01.2010* Dartford 1 Welling United 3

 

 

Welling United v Dartford

Dartford hope to record back to back wins for the first time since March when they make the short journey to Kent rivals Welling United on Tuesday night.

Victory for the Darts will also ensure they leap frog their opponents who are currently two places ahead in sixteenth. In a successive fixture against a part time side Tony Burman has already made it clear that taking points off semi professional teams will be crucial.

Prior the Nuneaton Town game, Burman spoke to www.kentonline.co.uk and said: “Every game’s a big game for us in this league. With another game on Tuesday, it doesn’t stop, it just keeps going”, he added: “Welling will be looking to get points from us, just like we’re looking to get points from them”.

Last season Dartford only managed one point against the Wings which was at Park View Road. A ten game losing streak was finally ended in January when on loan midfielder Jim Stevenson gave the Darts a lead. Welling United’s top scorer last term, Ross Lafayette equalised from the spot eight minutes later, the striker left the club in the summer.

When Burman and company last won a league match away from Princes Park they followed up the triumph with another. The Darts will be hoping history repeats itself after beating Nuneaton Town for the first time in 27 years on the weekend. For the third time this campaign Dartford had to clinch three points having battled from a goal down. Boro took the lead under new boss Liam Daish just past the half hour mark, Craig Curran giving the hosts an advantage. In the space of two second half minutes captain Elliot Bradbrook scored from the penalty spot and Danny Harris netted a winner.

Managed by former Dartford midfielder Jamie Day, Welling United are just one point better off. The Wings have also won three times this season taking eight attempts to record their first. Form has picked up this month with one defeat in four, including keeping their unbeaten home record intact.

On Saturday, Welling United managed their first away win emphatically against part timers Altrincham. By half time they were 3-0 with goals from Harry Beautyman, Tyrone Marsh and Jake Gallagher. The fourth came with four minutes remaining when summer signing Chris Bush completed the 4-0 triumph.

Team News

Dartford striker Andy Pugh is hoping to return against his former club, Lee Noble has damaged ankle ligaments and missed the 2-1 win at Nuneaton Town. Tom Bender is still waiting for his first start in a Dartford shirt but made an appearance on the weekend when he replaced Ryan Hayes.

Chris Bush and Jake Gallagher are one caution away from a suspension. Jon Nouble’s loan spell from League Two side Dagenham and Redbridge has been extended for a further month. Goalkeeper Lee Butcher made the decision recently to take a year break from football due to work commitments.

Head to Head

Welling United wins: 9 / Dartford wins: 15 / Draws: 6

Current Form

Welling United (WDWLWL) Dartford (WLWLDL)
Altrincham A 4-0 Nuneaton Town A 2-1
Gateshead H 1-1 Forest Green Rovers H 1-2
Lincoln City H 2-0 Dover Athletic H 2-1
Wrexham A 1-2 Gateshead A 0-1
Braintree Town H 2-1 Eastleigh H 2-2
Grimsby Town A 0-2 Altrincham A 1-2

Last Meeting at Park View Road

26 April 2014 – Welling United 1 Dartford 1 – Att: 1366

Goalscorer: Stevenson (10), Lafayette (18 pen)

Welling United Lineup: Butcher, Bergqvist, McLaren, Franks, Cargill, Clarke, Day, Healy, Beautyman, Lafayette, Guthrie (subs used: Cumbers, Fazakerley)

Dartford Lineup: Julian, Mitchel-King, Sterling, McAuley, Burns, Bradbrook, Martin, Woodyard, Stevenson, Harris, Pugh (subs used: Kamara, Collier)

Match Stats

wufc v dfc stats

Previous Meetings (* – Kent Senior Cup / ** – Conference South Playoff Final)

10.01.2014 Welling United 1 Dartford 1
26.12.2013 Dartford 1 Welling United 2
03.09.2013* Welling United 2 Dartford 3
13.05.2012** Dartford 1 Welling United 0
02.01.2012 Dartford 1 Dartford 0
26.12.2011 Welling United 1 Dartford 1

Stats

0 – Dartford still await a first half goal this season

1 – Dartford scored their first penalty this season on the weekend against Nuneaton Town

20 – games since Dartford won by more than one goal, the joint longest sequence along with Altrincham

24 – games since Welling United won consecutive games, only Dover Athletic (29) and AFC Telford United (44)

25 – Welling United have picked up the most yellow cards this season