Dartford’s second away game is back in the West Country this weekend when they take on Southern Premier South champions Taunton Town for the first time.
Successful in their first trip to Somerset on the opening day, the Darts will be aiming to bounce back from Tuesday night’s defeat and record a third win of the season. Taunton Town have yet to record a victory failing to score in their first three fixtures, the Peacocks will be hoping to record their first ever triumph in the National South.
Alan Dowson has opted for a stability in his selection policy making just one forced change to the starting eleven in the three games so far. Injured in the 2-0 win at Bath City on the opening day, Kristian Campbell has been out with Luke Allen starting the last two matches. The midfielder has impressed and has been linking up well in the centre of the pitch with Samir Carruthers. However, the pair were unable to help the Darts avoid defeat on Tuesday night against a strong Havant and Waterlooville side.
Jason Prior just loves scoring against Dartford and the Hawks striker was at it again giving the visitors an early lead. The Darts were level with Davide Rodari netting his first goal since joining from Crawley Town in the summer. Havant and Waterlooville’s, Oscar Gobern won it for the Hampshire outfit with a second half winner condemning Dowson’s men to their first loss of the campaign. Despite picking up no points at home and a ‘slow start’ the performance was still good enough according to the Dartford boss.
Striker, Pierre Fonkeu had netted all of Dartford’s goals leading up to Tuesday’s match so it was a relief to see Rodari open his account. Dowson has called upon his players to help out with increasing the goal tally so they don’t rely on Fonkeu too much. The Dartford boss feels improvement can be made in defence as well as attack and is hoping to look at the loan market to provide more competition within the squad.
After two victories and a loss, the Darts turn their attention to a first ever trip to Wordsworth Drive. The long journey means the squad will be travelling down the day before to aid their preparations against Taunton Town.
The Peacocks claimed the Southern League South on the final day last season. A late winner versus Farnborough, who could have snatched the title was enough to see the Peacocks cross the finishing line in first place. The same two sides were up against each other on Tuesday night and it was Boro who came out on top this time, Omar Rowe scoring the winner for the Hampshire club.
Rob Dray’s side entered their first ever National South campaign with momentum winning 19 of their last 22 fixtures. However, the opening three games this term has yielded no goals and one point. A 0-0 draw in the first game against Welling United was followed up by a single goal defeat versus Concord Rangers. The Peacocks have used the summer transfer window to sign experienced players at this level including ex Bath City trio Dan Ball, Lloyd James and Dave Sims-Burgess. Another new signing, Nat Jarvis finally got international clearance in time to make his debut on Tuesday, the striker played for Chippenham Town before moving to Barry Town United.
Current League Form
|Havant and Waterlooville||H||1-2||Farnborough||A||0-1|
|Bath City||A||2-0||Welling United||H||0-0|
- Dartford last won their opening two away games in consecutive seasons in 2005 and 2006.
- The Darts have scored in their last 11 away games in all competitions stretching back to their F.A Trophy exit last season in February.
- Dartford have failed to score in the league just once on the road in 2022, the North Kent Derby defeat to Ebbsfleet United on 2 January.
- The Darts have kept three clean sheets in their last four away matches in the league.
On This Day
Dartford have won their last four fixtures on this day with the most recent in 2016 against Weston-super-Mare. Luke Wanadio and a Ryan Hayes goal six minutes from time helped the Darts to a 2-1 victory. In fact the last three matches on 20 August have ended with the same score. In 2011, Charlie Sheringham and Elliot Bradbrook netted first-half goals against Hampton and Richmond Borough. Future Dart, Jacob Erskine pulled a goal back for the Beavers at Princes Park. In the Southern League Division One East back in 2005, Dartford defeated Stamford Town and two years earlier they beat Burgess Hill Town 1-0. On the road, the Darts have won five and lost two on this day.