Come August, the Daggers will line up as a League One team after a stunning and tense Play off Final win over Rotherham United at Wembley on Sunday.
Yes, that is right, League one, the old Third Division, in with teams like Charlton Athletic, Southampton and Sheffield Wednesday, with derbies against Leyton Orient, Colchester United and Brentford. So how did that happen?
After the way Morecambe had been dispatched in the semi final many of the analysts were tipping a Daggers win, yet it was hard to really believe that it could happen, and the bookies, rarely wrong, had the Millers as narrow favourites on the day. The Daggers fans gathered with with nervous expectation and a bit of optimism in the "unlucky end" of Wembley.
The team was as predicted, unchanged from the Morecambe games and Rotherham must have been prepared for what was to come. After the ceremonies were over the game started and all the early action was at the Daggers end, first Mills, then Taylor, flashing headers just wide as the Millers gained the upper hand.
Rotherham also hit the near post from a corner before slowly the Daggers clawed back into the game and the action moved more into the sun drenched Rotherham half of the field. It was Romain Vincelot that had the first good chance for the Daggers when an Abu Ogogo cross from the right looked to be behind everyone only for the Frenchman to somehow hammer a spectacular overhead kick at Warrington's goal. Luckily for the keeper it was a good height for him and he saved superbly, but now the Daggers were right in the game.
Shortly after Jon Nurse jinked through the Rotherham defence and was flattened by Millers skipper Ian Sharps, who was booked. The resulting free kick was right in Danny Green territory and his hard low shot was again saved by Warrington somehow after the keeper looked to be going the worng way initially.
Given the pressure it was not completely surprising that the Daggers grabbed the lead just after this, a quick free kick from Mark Arber allowing Peter Gain to set McCrory free up the Daggers left, the cross controlled by Paul Benson, then stroked into the bottom corner on the turn.
The fans went nuts in the stand but the joy lasted only seconds as Rotherham immediately equalised, a lapse in concentration letting Ellison have space to cross for Ryan Taylor who headed past Tony Roberts at the near post. The lead had lasted less than a minute.
Again Rotherham were on top now, although they couldn't find a clear chance, Kevin Ellison having a couple of shots blocked before the half time whistle gave everyone a chance to collect a breath or two.
The Daggers started the better after the break, Green in particular proving a handful, and Mark Arber might have scored had he hit his shot a little firmer when the ball dropped to him.
On 56 minutes a free kick into the box from McCrory was half cleared to Danny Green just outside the box. Green ran at the full back and then shot early from 18 yards when the whole Millers defence were obviously expecting a cross, the ball zipping across a surprised Warrington and in.
Again the Daggers fans erupted, again Rotherham came roaring back. They should have levelled it again when Mark Lynch's cross fell to Danny Harrison on the far post but his contact was wild and the ball bounced up to clip the bar and fly over. The warning wasn't heeded though and on 61 minutes Nicky Law got space up the Daggers left to pick out Ryan Taylor who had space and time to beat Roberts from around the penalty spot.
2-2, half an hour left, both sets of fans going wild.
After four well worked goals, the winner was a scruffy affair. On 68 minutes a Danny Green corner from the right was not cleared and the ball dropped to Jon Nurse, The shot was on target but weak, bouncing and more or less straight at Kevin Ellison who swung a leg at it but only succeeded in deflecting it past Warrington. 3-2 and 20 minutes plus stoppage time to go looked like an eternity.
Rotherham again steamed forward looking to level. Substitutions late on saw Monty and Phil Walsh replace Jon Nurse and Josh Scott, and Ronnie Moore the Millers manager also ringing the changes to try and find that leveller. For the Daggers faithful, the clock ticked slower and slower toward 90.
Benno screwed an overhead kick wide, but it was mostly a sea of red crashing on a cliff of yellow defenders. Four minutes of added time were signalled as it turned into the Alamo. With Daggers whistles ringing round Wembley Robbo twice punched clear then as time ran out a shot was deflected out for a corner. Up came Warrington, but to no avail as the corner was headed wide by Nick Fenton and the referee finally blew time.
The Daggers danced on and off the terraces as the Rotherham end emptied. The Trophy was lifted by Arbs and Anni to a roar from the Daggers faithful, the biggest cheer of the afternoon reserved for John Still at the end of the line.
The partly lasted all night and most of Monday too.
The fixtures are out on the 17th June!
Hardy has uploaded some pictures which are below. See also Nelson's pictures
which are hosted at Photobucket
and Danny Campbell's, some of which are on
this site, the rest on Danny's
Facebook page. The official photo's from the day can be viewd at www.daggers.co.uk. Enjoy!