Bath City v Dartford



Joe Brophy

10-man Dartford soared to the top of the National League South with a hard-fought 2-1 win away to Bath City at Twerton Park.

A double from League top scorer Alfie Pavey sandwiched between a half time strike from Tom Smith was enough to secure the three points.

The win was slightly marred by a straight red card for Andy Pugh with twenty minutes left after a late challenge on Dan Ball but despite having the fewer players, Pavey was on hand to grab the win ten minutes later.

The result means the Darts are ahead of the chasing pack on goal difference, albeit having played a game more whilst Jerry Gill’s woes continue having failed to grab a league win since taking managerial charge three weeks ago.

Dartford almost got off to a spectacular start when Ryan Hayes tried his luck with a first-time effort straight from kick off but his sailing effort unfortunately struck the crossbar and came out.

Hayes was soon involved again, this time out wide. Holding off one challenge he swung a cross towards Pavey, but the latter could only send his header straight into the arms of Luke Southwood.

The Darts pressure was relentless however and soon they had their breakthrough curtesy of a headed effort from Pavey just after the half hour mark.

Lee Noble collected a loose ball out wide and drove down the wing towards the by-line before executing a lofted cross towards the back post where Pavey rose above his man to head beyond Southwood.

Hayes then had a glorious opportunity to double his side’s advantage. A long free kick was headed down by Pavey into the path of Hayes who couldn’t find a way past Southwood.

Despite controlling the game for most of the half, a sloppy clearance in first half stoppage enabled Smith to draw the home side level.

Captain Anthony Straker delivered a poor cross that was only cleared into the path of Watkins who set the ball for Smith and the on-loan Swindon midfielder made no mistake in dispatching the ball into the bottom corner.

More sloppy defending almost proved to be the Darts downfall. A long free kick from Bath was met by an unmarked Marvin Morgan but with the goal at his mercy the striker mercifully headed wide.

Pavey soon had the ball in the net but he would have to wait for goal number 12 as the referee had already adjudged there to have been a foul on the keeper as he jumped for the ball.

Bath had really started to step up their attempts to push in front and things only got harder for the away side when Pugh was shown a straight red card for recklessly diving in on Dan Ball.

Pavey was also fortunate not to have been given his marching orders as well as pushing and shoving broke out between him and the rest of Baths back line.

Pavey made full use of the refereeā€™s leniency minutes later when he seized upon a terrible back-pass from Case and having just scuffled with the defender, the inform striker added insult to injury by rounding Southwood and slotting home his twelfth of the season to compound the home side’s misery.

The Darts held on to secure an invaluable three points.

Attendance: 449

Bath: Southwood, Rigg, Straker (c), Smith, Case, Ball, Watkins, Murphy, Morgan, Artus, Jarvis.

Bath subs: Edwards, Lucas, Mohammed, Ollis, Mellor

Dartford: Ibrahim, Harris, Wood, Brown, Vint, Noble, Hayes, Bradbrook (c), Pavey, Pugh, Della-Verde

Dartford subs: Murphy, Mfula, Eweka, Fulton, Ofori-Acheampong


Date Time League Season Full Time
October 24, 2017 7:45 pm National League South 2017/18 90'


Twerton Park
Bath BA2 1DZ, UK


Bath City1Loss
Dartford FC2Win

Dartford FC

Deren Ibrahim Goalkeeper
Keaton Wood Defender
Elliot Bradbrook Midfielder
Ronnie Vint Defender
Ryan Hayes Midfielder
Lee Noble Midfielder
Alex Brown Midfielder
Danny Harris Defender
Tom Murphy Midfielder
Andy Pugh Forward
Temi Eweka Defender
Lyle Della-Verde Midfielder
Warren Mfula Forward
Henri Fulton Defender
Alfie Pavey Forward