A fantastic late strike from Lee Noble ensured a bittersweet return for the midfielder as his effort proved to be the winner against old club Brentwood in the FA trophy.
Noble, who had also scored the scoring goal when the sides last met in 2008, but for Brentwood, hit a stunning 20-yard shot into the top corner in the 86th minute to send the Darts into the next round.
The Bostik North side were well on their way to a shock cup upset when they took a 52nd minute lead through Izzy Bademosi but a late turnaround curtesy of captain Elliot Bradbrook and former star Noble earned Dartford the victory.
The Darts were the better of the two sides but struggled to find an opening in the first 45. Alfie Pavey going closest on two separate occasions.
His first effort well saved by Anthony Page after some good build-up play from Ryan Hayes and Temi Eweka before the forward could only head into the keeper’s arms after being found from a Hayes corner.
Despite neither side deserving to take the lead, it was the home side who opened the scoring when Bademosi headed home after a fine run and cross from the left by Andy Freeman.
Dartford almost equalised instantly when Bradbrook found Hayes in the area but the winger saw his effort rebound off the crossbar.
The goal had given the hosts a huge boost in confidence and they should have increased their lead when Matt Hall rounded Deren Ibrahim after Alfie Hilton played him clean through but Eweka got back superbly to clear off the line.
Freeman fashioned a chance for himself that Ibrahim did well to divert for a corner, but Brentwood had missed the opportunity to put the game to bed and with fourteen minutes remaining, the home side were undone when Richard Sho-Silva’s long throw in was only cleared back to the defender whose cross was looped over Page by the head of Bradbrook.
With four minutes remaining it looked as though Dartford would have to settle for a draw until up-stepped former Brentwood hero Noble to provide the winner.
The ball fell to him outside the area and the Darts man struck the ball sweetly and it flew past a despairing Page into the back of the net.
It could have been even worse in added time as Noble robbed Hall and embarked forwards before laying it off to Hayes who should have done better as his shot flew high and wide, but the result was secured. Dartford through.
BRENTWOOD TOWN TEAM: Page, Gardner, Martin, Jones, Gibbs, Cavalier, Hilton, Robson, Bademosi, Hall, Freeman
BRENTWOOD TOWN SUBS: Mann, McCabe, Hilder, Wiggins, Rawlings
DARTFORD FC TEAM: Ibrahim, Eweka, Sho-Silva, Bonner, Onyemah, Hayes, Noble, Bradbrook, Della-Verde, Mfula, Pavey
DARTFORD FC SUBS: Pugh, Murphy, Cue, Brown
|November 25, 2017||3:00 pm||FA Trophy||2017/18||90'|