Dartford have the chance to move above Farnborough this weekend in their National South fixture at Cherrywood Road.
A win will alleviate some of the recent pressure on the Darts who find themselves seven points clear of the relegation places. Tony Burman’s first league game back in charge last Saturday ended in defeat. However, his team responded in the Kent Senior Cup on Tuesday night by booking a place in the semi-finals. Farnborough are two points and a place ahead of Dartford and were beaten for a fourth consecutive match in their previous outing.
Dartford were second best when they visited Cherrywood Road last season. Boro took the lead after Hisham Kasimu got the better of Jordan Wynter and finished a one on one with Joe Young in goal. Johnathon Page netted from close range to double the lead. Kristian Campbell scored a header to halve the deficit. However, Farnborough made sure of maximum points when Ollie Pendleberry scored a brilliant free-kick.
In August the two sides met at Princes Park and the Darts came agonisingly close to victory. Former Dartford striker, Alfie Pavey converted a late penalty as the spoils were shared. The deadlock was broken in the 75th minute with Maxwell Statham scoring at the far post. In stoppage time Brandon Barzey conceded a penalty and the composed Pavey levelled the match. This time Pavey will not be facing his former side as he has since left Farnborough.
Harvey Bradbury and Taylor Maloney featured six months ago and were lining up on opposite sides. Bradbury scored 11 goals in 33 appearances for the Darts before his move to Hampshire last month. Maloney made his debut in Dartford’s 1-0 defeat at home to Weymouth. The 25-year-old came on to replace Barzey, who picked up a hamstring injury. Maloney made his first start on Tuesday night in the 3-2 victory over Sevenoaks Town.
Burman made seven changes for the Kent Senior Cup quarter-final in mid-week. Tommy Block made a return from a long-term absence that has kept him out since October. Having been on compassionate leave, Charlie Sheringham also made a start. Academy graduate, Olly Box was named in the starting eleven for the first time and celebrated with his first goal for the club. Another player to open his goalscoring account was Manny Adebowale, whilst Luke Coulson netted his eighth of the season.
Bromley’s recall of on loan striker George Alexander leaves Burman with two recognised strikers in the squad. Alexander scored two goals in ten games for the Darts. However, the Dartford boss was impressed by Sevenoaks Town’s Fumnaya Shomotun in the county cup tie on Tuesday and decided to sign the attacking midfielder. Shomotun came through the Brentford and then Barnet academies before moving around various non-league clubs. The 26-year-old settled at Sevenoaks Town making over 50 appearances for them since joining in the early part of the 2022/2023 campaign.
Farnborough have been on the slide recently tasting their last victory on Boxing Day. Spencer Day’s side beat bottom of the table Havant and Waterlooville 1-0 to end the day in eighth place and just a couple of points off the playoffs. Now Boro are searching for their first points of 2024 having fallen to a 4-2 defeat in the reverse fixture against the Hawks, then losing three consecutive games 2-1 at the hands of St Albans City, Hemel Hempstead Town and last weekend relegation threatened Eastbourne Borough.
Despite the slump in form, Farnborough have only lost twice in the league on home soil. Boro were unbeaten in their opening nine fixtures at Cherrywood Road picking up six wins and three draws until defeat against Worthing. Their last three games as hosts have seen the Hampshire side win, lose and draw.
Current League Form
|St Albans City
|Havant & Waterlooville
|Havant & Waterlooville
|St Albans City
Head to Head
Dartford wins: 4 / Farnborough wins: 5 / Draws: 3
Last Six Meetings
Dartford 1 – 1 Farnborough (19/08/2023 – National South)
Dartford 3 – 1 Farnborough (11/03/2023 – National South)
Farnborough 3 – 1 Dartford (12/11/2022 – National South)
Dartford 3 – 0 Farnborough (10/03/2012 – National South)
Farnborough 1 – 2 Dartford (17/09/2011 – National South)
Dartford 4 – 1 Farnborough (22/01/2011 – National South)
- Dartford have won one of their last eight league fixtures (D3, L4)
- The Darts have won four of the last six league games against Farnborough. Last season’s away defeat their only loss in that time.
- Dartford’s only away league win against Farnborough came in 2011 (D1, L2)
- In this fixture, both sides have scored in ten of the 12 previous meetings. The Darts last kept a clean sheet against Boro in March 2012. Farnborough’s only clean sheet was in September 1995.
On This Day
Dartford do not travel well on 3 February having lost six out of eight on this day. The only times the Darts avoided defeat was a 1-1 draw at Burton Albion 34 years ago in the Southern Premier League. The other was an abandoned game at Barry Town in 1962. Dartford’s last humbling on 3 February was in 2018 when they lost 4-0 to St Albans City, still that was better than the 10-0 defeat to New Brompton (now Gillingham) in 1897. It’s not all bad though, Dartford have only lost twice in their previous nine outings on this day with the last victory coming in 1996 at home against Herne Bay. Nine years on from the heavy loss to New Brompton, the Darts also hit double figures in a 10-0 win versus Prices Athletic in the Dartford and District League First Division.