The Daggers will go into the hat for the FA Trophy 5th Round on Monday but
will need to win a tricky looking replay at Arlesey on Tuesday if they are to
take their place in the last 16.
Vickers made a return from injury to replace suspended skipper Tim Cole
alongside Matt Rees in the heart of defence as the Daggers fielded their best
available eleven against the Ryman Division One North team, the only other
significant change being Danny Shipp (right) in central midfield for Danny Hill.
On a classic cup upset day, 9 of the other 16 FA Trophy 4th round ties were
off, and the strong wind gusting straight down the ground from the Pondfield End
with occasional horizontal rain thrown in for good measure was going to be a
factor throughout the match.
Daggers had a dream start when Leon Braithwaite (left) scored after just four
minutes. A loopy cross came in from the left and while the Arlesey defence stood
back Braithwaite calmly nodded it in. The fans sat back and waited for the
floodgates to open, and shots from Tarkan Mustafa and Kirk Jackson almost
extended the lead.
Arlesey were not in the mood to surrender though and they repeatedly
threatened to get at the back line, the Daggers midfield guilty of pushing up
too far on more than one occasion. The Blues served notice of their intentions
on 22 minutes when they broke and Craig Mackail-Smith forced Naisbitt into a
save and desperate defending from the Daggers defence kept out follow up shots
from Jack Midson and Dean Harding.
Arlesey kept going and grabbed a deserved equaliser on 30 minutes when they
broke again and Harding's backheel was perfect for Midson, who sidefooted into
the corner the net.
Two minutes later the Daggers were back in front. Kirk Jackson grabbed his
first goal for the club heading emphatically home from Chris Piper's corner from
Both teams had chances to add to the score before half time, Matt Rees just
failing to react quickly enough to Jimmy Jackson's cross when almost any kind of
touch had to score.
the wind now at the visitors backs they started the second half strongest and
were level after 49 minutes. Another great fast break freed Craig Mackail-Smith who
shot across goal, the ball coming off Tarkan Mustafa and in.
Once again the Daggers stormed forward. Jimmy Jackson's free kick crashing
back off the post, but Arlesey were still causing havoc on the break against a
stretched Daggers back four. A hopeful punt up field led to the visitors getting
their noses in front when Ashley Vickers header back to Naisbitt fell short.
Mackail-Smith was on it like a flash and rounded Naisbitt only to be brought
Once again it was just yellow for Naisbitt as Abiodun Baruwa stripped off on
the sidelines. The Penalty sent Naisbitt the wrong way and the Daggers were
staring at a hugely embarrassing defeat.
Danny Hill replaced Chris Piper and it was Hill's pass to Kirk Jackson that
led to the equaliser, a thundering shot from outside the area that screamed in.
The Daggers pushed on looking to finish the tie off and thought they had when
Jimmy Jackson's corner from the right flew straight in at the far post but the
effort was ruled out due to a push by Ashley Vickers.
All credit to Arlesey Town for a fabulous display and the Daggers have to do
it all again at Arlesey on Tuesday night.