Dartford are hoping to record their first win of the season when they host Hampton and Richmond Borough on Tuesday night.
The Darts failed to win a pre-season game in the build up to the new campaign and have taken just one point from their opening two outings. The Beavers got off the mark on Saturday with a draw having lost their opening fixture.
Last season Alan Dowson got the better of his former club when the Darts won 2-1 at Princes Park. Marvin Herschel had a day to remember making his first ever start in a Dartford shirt and scoring the winner. However, it was Charlie Sheringham who made an impact scoring within a matter of minutes of coming on as a substitute. The striker was involved again setting up Herschel for his first Dartford goal. With three minutes remaining Jake Gray’s deflected effort set up a nervy finish.
Dowson handed eight debuts out on the opening day and added another two to that list down in Weymouth. After a shaky defensive display in the 3-3 draw at home to Bath City, the Dartford boss made two loan signings to strengthen the backline. Goalkeeper, Jack McIntyre went straight into the starting eleven to begin his one month loan from Accrington Stanley and James Golding made his fist appearance after arriving from Oxford United. Mitchell Beeney and Baris Altintop made way and were named on the bench, Paul Rooney served the second match of his three game suspension.
The game was decided by a moment of indecisiveness from McIntyre. The loanee looked to have Joel Rollinson’s deep cross covered, but fumbled the ball into the net. Tyrell Miller-Rodney, who recorded his first goal on his debut versus Bath City tested Weymouth’s goalkeeper in the first half and Luke Coulson, who netted an opening day double also came close. Making his first appearance of 2023/2024, as a substitute, Maxwell Statham had an opportunity with ten minutes to go, whilst McIntyre’s double save kept the score at 1-0. After showing attacking intent by scoring three against Bath City on the opening day, the Darts drew a blank.
One of the stand out performers in Dartford’s last home match was Brandon Barzey, who will face his former club Hampton and Richmond Borough after making the switch this summer. The winger isn’t the only former Beaver, Tommy Block signed for the Darts last season from the Middlesex club and Tyrell Miller-Rodney also had a spell at the Beveree. Meanwhile, goalkeeper Alan Julian is a former Dart, however new signing from Cheshunt Adam Desbois has started between the sticks for Hampton and Richmond Borough’s first two games.
Mel Gwinnett’s team were narrowly beaten by Eastbourne Borough just over a week ago. Billy Vigar’s header was the difference between the two sides. However, the Beavers recorded their first point on the weekend picking up a 1-1 draw at Chelmsford City. Despite falling behind to a Callum Jones strike, it took just a couple of minutes to pull level when Ruaridh Donaldson scored from close range. The Beavers boss felt his side were more competitive against the Clarets despite having to reshape his starting lineup.
Last season Hampton and Richmond Borough were heading for a relegation battle, which led to the departure of Gary McCann and the appointment of Gwinnett in February. A successful spell in March and victories in crucial six pointers saw them win eight of their last eleven to stay up with plenty of time to spare. Over the summer the Middlesex club signed Mason Bloomfield from Farnborough, who managed 11 league goals last term. From the National League, Robert Hall and Jordan Cheadle arrived from Barnet and Dorking Wanderers respectively. George Hunt made his switch from Slough Town to remain in the National South, whilst Alex Solomon and Ben Seymour have made the step up from Kingstonian and Plymouth Parkway. Georgian, Teimouraz Vasagkasvilli also joined the club.
Head to Head
Dartford wins: 9 / Hampton and Richmond Borough wins: 5 / Draws: 5
Last Six Meetings
Hampton & Richmond Borough 0 – 0 Dartford (29/04/2022 – National South)
Dartford 2 – 1 Hampton & Richmond Borough (24/09/2022 – National South)
Hampton & Richmond Borough 0 – 1 Dartford (26/03/2022 – National South)
Dartford 2 – 2 Hampton & Richmond Borough (22/01/2022 – National South)
Hampton & Richmond Borough 0 – 0 Dartford (10/10/2020 – National South)
Dartford 1 – 2 Hampton & Richmond Borough (08/02/2020 – National South)
- Dartford have lost just one of the last 12 league games against Hampton and Richmond Borough (W6, D5) and are unbeaten in the last five (W2, D3)
- The Darts have lost just once in their last seven home league games against the Beavers (W4, D2)
- Dartford have scored in each of their last seven home games against Hampton and Richmond Borough (W4, D2, L1)
- The Darts last failed to win their opening three league games in the 2019/2020 season
On This Day
Dartford are unbeaten on this day winning three out of five. In 2017, the Darts defeated Concord Rangers 2-0 at Princes Park when Elliot Bradbrook scored in the first half and Lyle Della-Verde netted in the second half. Bradbrook’s brother Tom scored twice two years earlier in a 2-2 draw with Sutton United. An exciting opening day encounter against Horsham in 2009 ended 3-2 to the Darts with Elliot Bradbrook grabbing a brace and Adam Flanagan getting on the scoresheet. In the National League, Dartford comfortably won 3-0 at Stafford Rangers back in 1981 and in 1970 the Darts drew 1-1 with Gloucester City in the Southern Premier League.