In a display reminiscent of some of the wins of last season Dagenham & Redbridge
took all three points from a close encounter with Hereford at Victoria Road on
Saturday despite being second best for much of the match.
The Daggers had Tony Roberts to thank after an excellent display of shot stopping particularly late in the second half after Hereford had thrown everything
forward looking for the point that they deserved.
The only change from the previous week was the recall of Danny Hill in place
of Steve Heffer, who didn't even make the bench so is presumably injured. This
gave the Daggers more creativity at the expense of solidity on the midfield and
Hereford started the fastest, using space wide to press the Daggers back.
had the first chances of the game, Paul Parry came close to giving them the lead after just ten minutes when
Lee Matthews (left) blocked his shot, then Parry recovered fastest only for
Robbo to make the first of his vital saves. Roberts blocked another Parry effort on 20 minutes and Danny Williams
shooting wide on the follow up.
Paul Bruce went off injured, replaced by Ashley Vickers the Daggers looked a
little more balanced and started to make a few chances as the half wore on.
First Junior McDougald (right) curled a shot low past the post and then Steve West headed just wide.
On 34 minutes it was West, who struck a fabulous goal at Edgar Street just 7
weeks before, who did it again.
On that occassion Mark Stein had set West up, this time it was Junior McDougald
who flicked the ball on and West waited for it to bounce before launching a half-volley into the top corner from 25
yards passed Matt Baker who could only admire it.
The Daggers had the best of the early exchanges in the second half. West flicked on
for Junior this time, and the resulting shot blocked by the legs of Matt Baker
and ran out for a corner. From that Baker then made an athletic tip over from
Lee Matthews' header.
On the hour Hereford were reduced to 10 men when Andy Tretton was sent off for
bringing Junior down as the last defender. The decision looked harsh as the
tackle looked a good one to many, but the linesman was certain and Tretton
walked. If anything the decisioon spurred Hereford on and they poured forward
for much of the remaining half hour.
Twice more Roberts denied Parry and Matt Clarke also fired over from close range, but
somehow it stayed at 1-0 to move the Daggers above Hereford into 9th in the
table and starting to look at the play-off spots.