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A serious injury incurred at just the wrong moment for the team.




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17 April 2021
Solihull Moors
Vanarama National League 

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13 April 2021
Vanarama National League 
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     On This Day

In 1993,The Daggers beat Bath City 2-1 at Home in the GM Vauxhall Conference 

In 1994,The Daggers drew 2-2 with Northwich Victoria Away in the GM Vauxhall Conference 

In 1995,The Daggers beat Farnborough Town 3-1  Away in the GM Vauxhall Conference 

In 1997,The Daggers drew 1-1 with Hitchin Town at Home in the ICIS League Premier 

In 1999,The Daggers beat Hampton 2-1  Away in the Ryman League Premier 

In 2004,The Daggers lost 0-1 to Halifax Town at Home in the Nationwide Conference 

In 2006,The Daggers drew 2-2 with Canvey Island at Home in the Nationwide Conference 

In 2010,The Daggers beat Burton Albion 2-1 at Home in the Coca Cola League Two 

In 2017,The Daggers drew 2-2 with Sutton United at Home in the Vanarama National League 

In 2018,The Daggers lost 1-3 to Bromley Away in the Vanarama National League 



Jason Broom Profile
by Dave Simpson on 01/11/2002

On the 8th of August 2001 Jason had a testimonial game at Victoria Road against West Ham United. The following are Jason's thoughts from the programme reproduced here by kind permission of Dave Simpson.

Jason Broom
Not often does a player stay with one club for the bulk of his career these days, but Jason Broom, who left Victoria Road in May 2002 after over 11 years with the club is one of them, joining Grays Athletic in the close season. He then returned to the club on loan on deadline day 2002/03 and played nine more times during the season run-in, including as a sub in both play off semi-finals.

Jason has comfortably the most appearances in a Dagenham & Redbridge shirt with 462 games, in which he scored 54 goals. But for a series of bizarre and unfortunate injuries over his career it would have been a whole lot more too.

On the 8th of August 2001 Jason had a testimonial game at Victoria Road against West Ham United. The following are Jason's thoughts from the programme reproduced here by kind permission of Dave Simpson.

Jason's career
Nearly a Hammer
Isthmian League and Wembley
Garry Hill and Promotion
FA Cup Heroics
Looking backwards and forward
Jason's best ever line-up
Jason's most memorable matches
Jason's injuries

Jason's career

Born in October 1969, Jason Broom's football career began at Eton Manor. Looking back he recalls, "my most lasting memory of my time there was that we always used to get six weeks off around Christmas and the New Year because the pitch was right next to the River Roding and was always flooding."

He was asked to go to Billericay Town when they were setting up a youth side and worked his way through the ranks and into the first team. In March 1991 Redbridge Forest manager, John Still, forked out £4,000 to sign him and Jason made his debut coming on as a second half substitute for Joe Simmons at Aylesbury on 2nd April. By the end of the season, the Club had gained promotion and Jason had jumped from the Isthmian League Division Two North to the Conference in five months.

"It really helped my game at Redbridge Forest playing with the players I had around me" said Jason. "There were non-league internationals in the side and George Dudley kept us very fit because his training was very tough."

He remained at Victoria Road following Redbridge Forest's merger with Dagenham in 1992 and scored in the clubs first ever fixture - a friendly at Great Wakering Rovers. He also scored in the Club's first competitive match in the Vauxhall Conference at Merthyr Tydfil.

Nearly a Hammer

His ability, as one of the best midfield players outside the football league, was recognised in 1993 and 1995 when he gained FA representative honours. He also had a trial at his childhood heroes West Ham.

"Supporting the Hammers and finding out that they wanted me to go there and have a trial was like a dream." He reflected.

"The players there were excellent with me. You think that some of them might be a bit flash but far from it. One thing that sticks in my mind was that I was wearing my own gear and Clive Allen told me I needed proper training kit and went and got me some so that I looked the same as all the others.

"I was disappointed that they didn't sign me because I'd love to have played for them but I returned to Victoria Road a better player because I had more confidence in myself. If you have professional sides looking at you, and they weren't the only ones at the time because Birmingham City also wanted me to trial, then you're going to get confidence in yourself and that year I thought I was the best midfielder of that age in the Conference."

Despite being selected for the England semi-professional squad injuries prevented him from gaining the cap his ability merited. Unfortunately Jason's career has been plagued by injuries but he has battled back when others might have called it a day. Looking back at the physio's who have treated him he says, "John Stannard spent more time with me than any of the others and Dickie Harper is excellent too. There were times I was with John more than I was with my family. I don't really have a favourite physio though and have always thought that If they can do their job, and thankfully this club has always employed good ones, then that's the main thing."

When John Still left the Club to join Peterborough, Dave Cusack was installed as the new manager but unfortunately for Jason and the Club things didn't work out as they would have liked.

"I thought that Dave Cusack was excellent, very organised with his training and very professional - I really liked him. You could tell the way he did things managerial wise that he had played at the top level. The players felt we let him down and when he went it wasn't like we were glad to get rid of him because we all thought he was a very good manager. He did very well at Boston but it just didn't work out for him here, sadly to say."

With the Club rooted to the foot of the table in October the following year, Dave Cusack departed and the disastrous appointment of Graham Carr and the relegation that followed nearly made Jason think about leaving but the installing of Ted Hardy was enough to make him stay loyal to the Club.

Isthmian League and Wembley

Jason scored in the Daggers first game in the ICIS League and they got off to a good start with a 3-1 win over Harrow Borough. Looking back at the game and the return to Isthmian League football he says, "Ted Hardy was rebuilding the team and had a lot of local players returning to the side so it was good to start off with a victory. I felt a majority of the Isthmian League pitches were poorer, the stands were terrible and there was little atmosphere where as all of those things in the Conference are excellent.

Despite the team rebuilding the Club made it to the FA Trophy final at Wembley after defeating Gloucester City in a semi-final replay at Slough where they faced Woking.

"Knowing we were going to Wembley after the victory over Gloucester City was unbelievable. I can't describe it exactly but it was the same sort of feeling that I got after we scored at Charlton but it was better at the end knowing I was going to Wembley. I thought I'd never play there in my career after we were relegated."

Despite losing in the final, Jason wasn't too despondent. "As I said to Tony Rogers, Tony was really gutted at the time, it's not about the result today. It's probably the only time I'll ever say that in my life but the result wasn't heartbreaking. It was all about the occasion, we had played there and our supporters had out sung theirs."

Looking back at Ted Hardy's time at the Club Jason says. "What he done for this club when he came back was fantastic. The club was in a bad position and he brought in local lads and players who got on with each other. I have never known anything like the team spirit he brought into the club. I think that was the main thing that got us to Wembley and the fact that we all worked so hard for each other.

Garry Hill and Promotion

Garry Hill took over as manager in 1999 and suddenly the Club looked like it could regain it's Conference status. "I really believed we'd win the league after we beat Enfield at home 4-0," said Jason.

"Enfield were top at the time and the game was so one way, I don't think they had a shot. From that day I never had any doubt that we'd win the league. We had a few players out that day and I played left back, everyone else in our defence was about 20-21 years old."

On the way to winning the Championship he passed a personal goal when he overtook Steve Conner as the Clubs record appearance holder.

"I believe It'll be tough for anyone to break my appearance record as players are moving from club to club more nowadays, it probably won't be too long when contracts are monthly. If I can play another full season and get at least 30 games in then I doubt anyone will."

The Club returned to the Conference last season and took it by storm finishing in third place.

"I thought we'd just consolidate our position for a couple of years and build from there but as we started the season the players looked so strong. We had such a strong defence and if you've got one of these you've got a great chance. I would go so far as to say our two centre backs are in the top five in the league. When we were in the Conference last the players were bigger but I think it's more a footballing league now. The stadiums have improved and the pitches are better. The fact that so many Clubs are full time means the players are fitter."

FA Cup Heroics

As well as doing so well in the league, the Club caught the national headlines as it made it through to the FA Cup third Round with a victory at Lincoln City. Jason looks back on the cup run saying, "We'd been playing well up to the Lincoln game, other than the trip to Northwich Victoria, and we knew we'd be going there with a strong side. There's not a great difference between the Conference and the third division and we knew we'd have a chance because we'd be up for the game. It was great to win because although we scored in the last minute we definitely deserved it and we'd have been very disappointed if we didn't get at least a draw out of the game.

"In the third round draw I really wanted to play West Ham, Manchester United or Liverpool but it came out Charlton and it was only later that I really thought about it and realised they are in the Premiership and one of the top sides.

"In the first game when Junior scored, I remember just jumping around and swinging my arms about then cuddling him. Ashley Vickers came running into me at about 20 miles an hour and almost broke my back. We had to try to get
him to calm down because he was too ecstatic.

"I thought we had a great chance to beat them in the replay especially with the pitch the way it was and playing the game here. Even though we only lost 0-1 I was very disappointed."

During the cup run, Jason took up numerous columns of newspaper inches and was put under the spotlight by the media.

"I think, because I was the longest serving player and had suffered all these injuries, I attracted a lot of publicity. I had the Telegraph come into work to interview me, the Daily Star spoke to me, the Mail did an article on me and I was on the radio. For me it was great because I wasn't used to it but I can imagine that those that get it all the time can find it a real pain."

Looking backwards and forward

The last two years have been fantastic to Jason and the club and have coincided with the appointment of Garry Hill as manager.

"Garry Hill is a great motivator and it seems whatever side he picks and whatever formation he plays, it seems to work. From the manager down to the players, the clubs just going from strength to strength. I think Terry Harris is an excellent coach. Terry's got good ideas and his training methods are good. Training has changed from what it was because there's a lot more stretching involved and the taking of fluids."

Looking back at his career at the Club he says, "I've loved my time at Victoria Road. There's been some bad times with my injuries and relegation but there's been more good times. I've won more games than I've lost and I've been involved in big games and I've been involved with different set ups. The Middlesex Wanderers, England semi-professional set up, winning the Essex Senior Cup twice, playing at Wembley, playing in the third round of the FA Cup, the Orient cup-tie, it seems every year I've played in a big game and for a non-league player I've probably done quite a lot.

"I'd like to continue in the game in the future possibly coaching at some stage but time will tell. I'm mainly trying to concentrate on my playing at the moment and trying to keep fit because it's true what they say and it does catch up on you and you do ache the next morning and pause a little bit more. I'll try to look after myself and keep playing as long as I can and go from there.

"Tonight I'm looking forward to playing against Joe Cole and Michael Carrick just to see how good they really are on the ball. It's just good to play against Premier League players because they are household names, people who
you do look up to and see on the television and its good to pit your wits against them."

Jason's best ever line-up
Throughout his time at Victoria Road, Jason has played alongside over 250 players. Here he names his best eleven of these together with the reasons why he's chosen them.

Ian Bennet (Goalkeeper)
Ian was on loan to Redbridge Forest from Peterborough United. Brilliant shot stopper and excellent at handling crosses. Currently playing for Birmingham City.

Tim Cole (Right Back)
Tim is an excellent player who can play anywhere across the back. Although not a natural right back, when he has played there he has been outstanding. I still feel he's young enough to make it as a professional.

Paul Watts (Left Back)
I played in front of Paul for a long while. Not the quickest or strongest defender and not very good in the air but he was always in the right place at the right time (Don't you just hate that). Brilliant to play in front of as he wouldn't let me defend.

Tony Pamphlett (Centre Back)
Pamph is one of the hardest players I have ever played with. He would scare the living daylights out of opponents' forwards. He had this knack of letting attackers head the ball first and then heading them. He never lost anything in the air. I thought he could play a bit as well especially in training but then again, I think we were all too scared to tackle him.

Steve Conner (Centre Back)
I joined Redbridge Forest the same season as Steve and he and Andy Hessenthaler were the two that stood out. He represented the England Semi-professional team on numerous occasions. His attitude and commitment was excellent and he was brilliant on the ball. Now retired but making a cameo appearance tonight.

Andy Hessenthaler (Midfield)
Probably the fittest man I have ever played football with. When we did pre-season training we would go on some long runs and when we returned Andy would be sunbathing - he was that far ahead. He was strong and worked very hard for the team. It was no surprise that the Club sold him to Watford. Now manager at First Division Gillingham.

Mark Janney (Midfield)
When Mark is on song, it's just a case of get the ball to him and leave him to do the magic. He has blistering pace and so much ability.

Ian Richardson (Midfield)
Ian came throught the reserves. Never the most gifted player in the world but was a ferocious tackler. He used to get from box to box and scored lots of goals mainly through his excellence in the air. Ian is currently at Notts County.

Marcus Ebdon (Midfield)
Another player Redbridge took on loan from Peterborough in my first Conference season. Marcus was very good on the ball and another player who was able to get from box to box and score some great goals.

Paul Cavell (Centre Forward)
Redbridge Forest paid a lot of money to Boston United to sign him. I never saw him miss a one on one chance. Paul was the Clubs top scorer in the Conference in his first season.

Courtney Naylor (Cerntre Forward)
The year we went to Wembley he was frightening. especially in the earlier rounds at Dover Athletic and Morecambe. I know Tony Rogers took a lot of stick that year but what a partnership they were. I was convinced Courtney would go on and make it as a pro. Sadly, since the Trophy final he has suffered a broken leg and had terrible back problems. Courtney is currently at Braintree Town.


Gary Butterworth
The most laid back player I have ever known

Lee Matthews
Probably the best Centre back currently in the Conference

Paul Gothard
He was outstnading the year we went to Wembley. He made the best save I have ever seen in the 0-0 FA Trophy draw at Morecambe.

Paul Terry
An excellent all-round player who gets better with every game he plays. He has great potential and I believe he will go onto play at a higher level.

Lee Goodwin
Very strong and can play anywhere across the back. Lee is still young and another player I feel can go on and play at a higher level.

Jason's most memorable matches
Jason looks back over the ten years he has spent here at Victoria Road and selects a handful of his most memorable matches

1992, Leyton Orient, FAC 1R
Lost 4-5

This was a fantastic game to play in. We led 2-0, and I had scored the first, then 3-1 before going 5-3 behind. Cavell pulled a goal back for us to make it 4-5 but we just couldn't get the equaliser. Another good thing about this game was me having a bet on myself to score the first goal at 16-1.

1997, Gloucester City, FA Trophy Semi-Final Replay
Won 2-1

This was the most pressure I have ever felt going into a game as a place in the final at Wembley stadium was the prize for the winners. It was not a pretty game and we went 1-0 down in the first half. We equalised just before half-time, a great finish by John Stimson after the ball had come back off the post. We came out in the second half with our tails up and only a piece of magic was going to win this fast and furious game. Up stepped John again to score a 35 yard volley and send us to Wembley. That night the celebrations were mad and I stayed up all night - due to Glyn Creaser staying at my place and I don't think he ever went to bed.

1997, Woking, FA Trophy Final
Lost 0-1

They say that every players dream is to play at Wembley and they are not wrong. The feeling you get from walking out at the twin towers was unbelievable and made even more so for me because I shook hands with Pele. Every player gave their all and our fans made it a carnival atmosphere with their constant singing for 120 minutes. The one thing that still sticks out in my mind from that day was in the dressing rooms after the game. Ted Hardy did his speech saying how proud he was of us all and for us to hold our heads up high. When we looked up, David Jacques had a rubber ring and Steve Conner had a pair of swimming goggles on, ready for the bath. It was then back to the Club where hundreds of people cheered us off the coach and then we all partied through the night. The Club was so packed you couldn't fit another person into it.

2000, Hampton & Richmond Borough, Ryman League
Won 3-2

This was the game that won us the title and had as the cliché goes, everything. We got to their ground and they wanted to call the game off due to an area of the pitch which was like quicksand. The rest of the pitch was rock hard and bumpy but due to Garry Hill's insistence, the game went ahead. I scored our first from about a foot out, then our keeper, Paul Newell, got sent off. We had no keeper on the bench so Mark Keen went in goal and then they scored two goals to lead 2-1. We equalised again and then had another man sent off with 20 minutes still to go. I can't remember what formation we played after that but I think we left two up front. In the 8th minute of injury time, up stepped Junior McDougald who score a cracker. This was the last kick of theb game and as Aldershot had been beaten, we had won the league.

2001, Charlton Athletic, FA Cup 3rd Round
Drew 1-1 and Lost 0-1

The most enjoyable of the two games was at the Valley as nobody expected us to get a result. The pitch there was fantastic and there were over 20,000 in the stadium. The goal we scored was probably the best move of the match, a five man move finished superbly by Junior. This was the best we had played all season as a unit and some of our players showed they are more than capable of playing at a higher level. The second game was more nerve racking because there was some pressure on the players, not by the manager of club but the media because we had created an upset in the first game. Despite us having a lot of possession and chances, we didn't have too many on target but it was still great to know we gave such a good account of ourselves over the two games against a top Premiership side.
most memorable matches. (picture, Jason far left).

Jason's injuries
Prior to the FA Cup third round replay, Jason was featured in an article in the Daily Mail entitled, 'the bionic broom'. The article then talked about the number of injuries he's suffered over the years and the time he's spent on the sidelines. It's true to say that without these injuries his number of appearances for the club would have been at least 150 greater than they are. Unfortunately for Jason, until last season, he never suffered normal injuries like other footballers. Here he lists some of his more serious injuries together with the finer details of them.

Detached Retina
"This happened in a game against Telford United when I was elbowed in the face. My vision was impaired and everything out of my left eye was green. I had to have the first operation, which was unsuccessful, because I
completely lost my sight in my left eye. The second operation was a lot more complicated because they had to cut my eyeball open and repair the retina. Then they had to pump in a type of gas to hold everything in place. When I left the hospital I had disposable stitches in my eye and blood running down my cheek which was mixed in with tears as my eye was watering. I have never known pain like this.

"The rehabilitation was just as bad. I had to lay on my side for 45 minutes every hour to keep the gas bubble in place. What with that and having to sleep with a plastic patch sellotaped to my face. I didn't play any sport for at least seven months following the injury."

Compartment Syndrome
"I had this problem where, when I ran I would get a terrible aching feeling in my lower leg. This was a complaint I had for years and seemed to get worse. I went to Lillishall and was told it was a nerve problem. I carried on playing but it was getting to the stage where I was getting pains in the pre-match warm-up. It came to a head before a game at Halifax Town when I had a terrible numbness in my leg and I was getting pins and needles. I told John Stannard, the physio, that if they couldn't find out the problem, I would have to give up the game as it was becoming unbearable.

"John booked me into the London hospital as they had just installed a special machine that they could use on me. They injected jump leads into my leg and made me run on the spot. I was diagnosed as having compartment syndrome. My muscles were swelling so much they would not allow the blood to flow properly so they would need to cut me open in two places and release the pressure.

"I had three operations for this. After the first one, I went home and my leg became infected and caused a blood clot. I went back to hospital and spent ten days on a drip which was pumping antibiotics into me as the infection was so strong. The antibiotics actually destroyed some of my veins. I had to have two further operations to correct the blood clot. In total I spent seven weeks off work."

Rebuilt Broken Shoulder
"I broke my shoulder against Worthing in a cup-tie but I was told by the doctor that I had probably dislocated it and it had gone back into place. I was given an injection and played a week later and it snapped out of place again. I went to see a specialist who advised me to rest for three months. I returned to action and played ion the FA Trophy final but my shoulder still wasn't right as I couldn't lift my arm over my head.

"Finally I went to see a shoulder specialist and he told me that my shoulder was badly damaged and needed to be rebuilt. I spent six days in hospital and had my shoulder cut open from the top down to under my armpit. My arm was strapped to my body for four weeks."

'Minor' injuries suffered by Jason include.....
Broken wrist and arm, perforated ear drum and a pulled hamstring.

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