Dartford realistically need to defeat new National South champions Yeovil Town on Saturday to be in with a chance of a dramatic last day survival next weekend.

The Darts are two points from safety with just two matches remaining and need results to go their way to avoid relegation. Last season’s runners up have taken a mighty fall this term and a loss against the Glovers could see them return to the Isthmian Premier League for the first time in 14 years. Yeovil Town have handled their relegation setback in the best way possible by bouncing straight back up to the National League at the first attempt and wrapped up the title on Thursday night.

When Dartford hosted Mark Cooper’s side in November it looked as though the Darts were about to turn the corner. Under Alan Dowson, the 2-2 draw at Princes Park came shortly after victories at Worthing and Torquay United and left them four points shy of a playoff place in twelfth. Since then, the Darts have won just three times in the league in 23 attempts and replaced Dowson with Adrian Pennock.

In the opening ten minutes of the reverse fixture Dartford were almost blown away, but Ryan Sandford’s Player of the Match performance kept the hosts in the game. Yeovil Town took the lead from the spot through Rhys Murphy but could have already scored a few times by then. Somehow Dartford went in at the break level when Luke Allen set up George Alexander. In the second half the hosts improved, and Richard Chin gave the Darts a shock lead with twenty minutes remaining. However, the Glovers showed why they have topped the table for most of the season when Jordan Young equalised to leave the score all square.

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Match highlights courtesy of Dartford FC TV

This will be Dartford’s first visit to Huish Park, which opened in 1990. When the two sides last met, in the 1984/1985 Alliance Premier League season it was played at Yeovil Town’s former home, the Huish Athletic Ground. The Darts felt as though they had dropped points that day drawing 2-2 against a Yeovil Town side who were reduced to ten men. Dartford went on to finish third that season, their highest ever position. The Glovers ended the campaign bottom and were relegated to the Isthmian League, at the time the equivalent of the National South today.

Dartford’s hopes of surviving the drop were given a boost last weekend in their 2-1 victory away at Havant and Waterlooville. After falling behind, the Darts levelled through Joash Nembhard and shortly afterwards Oliver Box netted the winner. The academy graduate impressed once again, and local reports continue to suggest there is interest for the youngster from Premier League clubs. With Eastbourne Borough also winning on Saturday that meant a victory against Worthing on Tuesday night was pretty much a must win game for the Darts.

Adrian Pennock named an unchanged side and when Luke Coulson scored from the penalty spot there was hope for the hosts. Unfortunately, that hope was extinguished in the second-half as Worthing fought back to secure a playoff place. Bradley Dologhan miss-hot a cross that sailed over goalkeeper Rhys Byrne. Then Nembhard’s misjudgement at the back put in Kane Wills to score the winner.

Yeovil Town clinched the National South title on Thursday night in Gloucester. The Glovers claimed an away win over Truro City, who are yet to confirm their status in the division for next season. Rhys Murphy and Alex Fisher got the celebrations underway with a goal in each half to secure a 2-0 win. The Somerset club are now nine points clear and unsurpassable.

Starting the campaign as one of the favourites brings its own pressure and Yeovil Town have handled that well. After a shock defeat on the opening day to Hemel Hempstead Town, the Glovers took the first month to get familiar with their surroundings. By the start of September, they had won three out of seven and lost to now relegated Havant and Waterlooville. Then a ten-game winning streak propelled Cooper’s side to the top with a comfortable lead. In all competitions they set a club record of 14 consecutive victories. Although they have had minor blips in form on a couple occasions this term, Yeovil Town’s ability of putting winning runs together and their consistency has deservedly kept them at the top of the pile through most of the campaign.

Current League Standings

Team Played Pts GD
Hemel Hempstead 44 49 -15
Truro City 42 48 -11
Torquay United 43 47 -8
Eastbourne Borough 43 45 -25
DARTFORD 44 43 -18
Taunton Town 42 42 -26
Havant & Waterlooville 44 37 -34
Dover Athletic 43 27 -33

Current League Form

Dartford (DDLLWL) Yeovil Town (LDWWLW)
Worthing H 1-2 Truro City A 2-0
Havant & Waterlooville A 2-1 Worthing H 1-3
Eastbourne Borough H 0-2 Torquay United H 3-0
Chelmsford City A 1-4 Braintree Town A 1-0
Truro City A 0-0 Slough Town A 0-0
Hemel Hempstead H 1-1 Chippenham Town H 1-3

Head to Head

Dartford wins: 23 / Yeovil Town wins: 30 / Draws: 33

Last Six Meetings

Dartford 2 – 2 Yeovil Town (09/12/2023 – National South)
Dartford 1 – 2 Yeovil Town (13/01/1990 – F.A Trophy)
Dartford 1 – 1 Yeovil Town (23/02/1985 – National League)
Yeovil Town 2 – 2 Dartford (22/12/1984 – National League)
Yeovil Town 0 – 1 Dartford (12/09/1984 – Bob Lord Trophy)
Dartford 1 – 3 Yeovil Town (04/09/1984 – Bob Lord Trophy)


  • Dartford’s only two league victories in 2024 have came on the road (D2, L7)
  • The Darts last away win in the league against Yeovil Town was 60 years ago, a 2-0 Southern Premier League victory in 1963, a run of 13 winless away matches in the league versus the Glovers (D5, L8)
  • The Glovers have won 51 points at home in the division, more than any other side. However, they have won one in their last four at Huish Park (D0, L3)

On This Day

Dartford lifted the Kent Senior Trophy for the first and only time on this day in 1996. Facing Chatham Town at Park View Road, the Darts overcame a nervy start eventually winning 3-0 with goals from Dean Bowey, Ricky Bennett and Sean Bristow. In the last five Dartford matches on 13 April the winning side has managed to keep a clean sheet, the last two for the opposition. Taunton Town beat the Darts 1-0 last season at Princes Park and at the same venue four years earlier Chippenham Town recorded the same score. The previous three outings before those defeats went Dartford’s way. Charlie Sheringham scored the only goal of the game against Stockport County in 2013 and Allan Tait was the match winner at Harrow Borough in 2010. In the season before the Darts bagged four without replay versus Canvey Island. Lee Noble, Adam Flanagan, Rob Haworth and Ryan Hayes all finding the back of the net.