On the back of seven straight wins in all competitions, Dartford travel West this weekend to face Bath City.
When the Darts visited Twerton Park last season, Bath City were the in form team leading the table after six consecutive victories and a draw. Dartford took a well earned point from the Romans in a 0-0 draw, but are still searching for their first away win over their opponents for 41 years.
Since Dartford’s 2-1 Southern Premier League win in 1975, Bath City have won six and drawn four of their home matches against the Darts.
Tony Burman can be confident in his side who are unbeaten in ten games and progressed to the F.A Cup first round last weekend. The Darts beat Isthmian Premier League side Tonbridge Angels 3-0 in the Kent derby. Alex Brown netted his fourth for the club, Andy Pugh kept up his good form with his fifth of the season and Elliot Bradbrook scored his fifth F.A Cup goal in three games. Victory in the cup equalled Dartford’s best winning streak since January 2012.
Burman is not surprised with his team’s current form, he told www.kentonline.co.uk:”We had a torrid time with injuries back in August, but I felt there was a lot of potential in the people we signed”, he continued: “The results are going for us, which always helps, and they have had a great reception from the supporters”.
He added: “Duane-Ofori-Acheampong didn’t do a pre-season, but has now played a number of games and you can see he is benefiting from it. Alex Brown has done exceptionally well and Luke Wanadio is one who has given us another outlet. They and the others are decent players who have come into the fold. I love to build a team and get them gelling together. If we do that we can become a force”.
One player getting plenty of recognition from the fans is Tom Wynter and he played a part last weekend by coming off the bench, the full back has been injured missing all of October so far. Deren Ibrahim returned as number one goalkeeper after international duty with Gibraltar.
After falling victim to the dreaded penalty shoot out, Bath City followed up the F.A Cup defeat at home to Potters Bar Town with a 1-1 draw against Eastbourne Borough. The Romans cup exit means they last played a fortnight ago with new loanee Ryan Broom making an immediate impact. The 20 year old midfielder from Bristol Rovers scored with his first touch in a Bath City shirt, but his goal was cancelled out just four minutes later.
The West country club seem to be draw specialists of late if you include games of ninety minutes. In the National South they have picked up a point in their last two fixtures including a 3-3 draw away to Hemel Hempstead Town. Gary Owers’ side have had mixed results this term and currently occupy tenth place and only three points away from the Darts.
Last season, early promise ended in mid-table obscurity and scoring goals seemed to be a problem. Owers, who took charge during last term identified the issue and has since brought in Marvin Morgan and Stuart Fleetwood. Morgan is the Romans top scorer this season with six goals in all competitions, the 33 year old has also had Football League experience with Aldershot Town, Plymouth Argyle and Shrewsbury Town. These days Fleetwood is used more as a substitute and has only manged to find the net once this season, however the striker built up a decent reputation in his days at Forest Green Rovers.
Head to Head
Bath City wins: 40 / Dartford wins: 27 / Draws: 19
Current League Form
Bath City (DDWLLW)
Drew 1-1 v Eastbourne Borough (H)
Drew 3-3 v Hemel Hempstead Town (A)
Won 4-0 v Gosport Borough (H)
Lost 1-2 v Hampton and Richmond Borough (A)
Lost 1-3 v Oxford City (A)
Won 2-1 v Whitehawk (H)
Won 5-0 v Truro City (A)
Won 2-1 v Concord Rangers (A)
Won 2-0 v Margate (A)
Drew 1-1 v East Thurrock United (A)
Won 2-1 v Welling United (H)
Drew 0-0 v Maidenhead United (H)
Last Six Meetings
Dartford 4 Bath City 1 (16/01/2016 – National South)
Bath City 0 Dartford 0 (05/09/2015 – National South)
Dartford 0 Bath City 1 (07/04/1990 – Southern Premier League)
Bath City 0 Dartford 0 (09/09/1989 – Southern Premier League)
Dartford 1 Bath City 0 (28/01/1989 – Southern Premier League)
Bath City 4 Dartford 2 (03/12/1988 – Southern Premier League)
Dartford have won just three of their last 20 matches against Bath City. The Romans have won half of those games with seven draws.
In the last two games, the Darts have kept two clean sheets in a row for the first time this campaign.
Dartford have failed to score in four of their last five trips to Twerton Park and have not found the net in the last two away games against the Romans. The Darts last goal at this weekend’s venue was in the 4-2 defeat back in 1989.
Bath City have drew each of their last six competitive games over 90 minutes. Two in the National South and four in the F.A Cup, both ties went to penalties.
The Romans have played two and won two against teams above them in the league at home.
On This Day
Ten years ago Brendon Cass stole the show in the F.A Trophy first qualifying round, Cass’ four goals helped Dartford ease to victory as they thrashed Horsham YMCA 6-0. Eddie McClements opened the scoring and Ryan Hayes also scored, with his trademark curler. The cup tie was a prequel to the Princes Park homecoming on 11 November.