An excellent away following travelled to Broadhall Way on Saturday, only to see
the Daggers beaten by two second half goals in an entertaining game, but a
frustrating performance by the visitors.
Stein returned as a starter for the Daggers, partnering Steve West up front with
Junior on the bench, sitting next to Daggers legend Jason Broom (left), brought
back from his spell with Grays Athletic on transfer deadline day.
The Daggers started better than Boro, zipping the ball around quickly and
creating a number of decent openings in the first quarter of an hour, the best
wasted by Steve West who shot wide when well placed. After this though Boro took
the upper hand, pressing the Daggers back deep without actually creating that
many clear cut opportunities.
With passes going astray in midfield and the forwards seeming unable to hold
on to the ball some great defending by the back four was being wasted and
pressure invited as a result.
Daggers made it to half time still level but it seemed almost inevitable that
unless they changed something Stevenage's pressure would tell. In the 58th
minute they got the goal they deserved, a cross from the Daggers right by Simon
Travis finding Danny Carroll in space and he headed emphatically past Robbo
By this time Junior had already replaced Steve West, and shortly after Mark
Janney came on to replace Danny Hill and the changes pepped the Daggers a little
as they pressed for an equaliser. Taking the game to their hosts for a spell,
the best chances came from set pieces, the closest to an equaliser being Tim
Cole's header clutched by Westhead under the cross bar.
forward so much opened gaps though and as a result Anthony Elding was able to
break in the 76th minute, his shot from distance somehow ending up in the corner
of the net to end the game as a contest.
Lee Matthews (left) and his team could only play out the rest of the match
hoping for a break that didn't come as Stevenage closed the game down as they
had failed to at Victoria Road when 2-0 up.
With the Stevenage fans enjoying their rare recent superiority the Daggers
streamed for the exits early, although the chant of "Dagenham, Dagenham
what's the score" was met with "2-0 to the Farnborough"!
As the scores filtered through from other games, Hereford lost and Halifax
only drew, making the defeat a little more palatable, leaving the gap between
the final play-off spot in 5th place, now occupied by the Daggers, to 6th still
7 points with just six games remaining.
Three wins would now assure the Daggers of a place in the first ever
Nationwide Conference promotion play off.