Brilliant Daggers deliver best performance of the season to down Pilgrims
21:42 17 March 2015
Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY - FA Premier League and Football Leagu
Sky Bet League Two: Dagenham & Redbridge 2 Plymouth Argyle 0
Dagenham & Redbridge put in their best display of the campaign to beat play-off hopefuls Plymouth Argyle and virtually ensure their status in the Football League for another season.
Wayne Burnett’s team were brilliantly from the first minute until the last and could have won by more than two-goals.
Abu Ogogo opened the scoring with 30 minutes gone and although they had to wait until the 88th minute to double that lead they thoroughly deserved their success.
It was a wonderful performance and showed exactly what this team is capable of achieving.
Burnett decided to make changes to his starting team following Saturday’s lacklustre display against Southend United.
The most surprising was Ashley Chambers, starting for the first time since January 10, coming back into the team.
Mark Cousins and Abu Ogogo also returned after shaking off injuries which prevented starting at the weekend.
Liam O’Brien suffered a groin injury against Southend and missed out all together with Lewis Moore remaining on the bench.
Damian Batt was dropped and was among the substitutes, but Shamir Fenelon was surprisingly not included.
Plymouth made the better start at Victoria Road, however the contest was incredibly scrappy.
Argyle attempted to test the home defence by putting some balls into the area, but they never looked too threatening and it was Burnett’s team that came closest to opening the scoring after quarter of an hour.
Chambers whipped a corner into the box and Ashley Hemmings headed towards goal, but Tareiq Dennis cleared off the line.
Daggers started to pass the ball better after that opportunity and looked more confident in possession.
Jamie Cureton was putting in a shift up front as well chasing every ball and it was helping his team move up the pitch.
In the 30th minute the hosts turned their territory into a chance and it resulted in the opening goal.
Chambers dummied the ball and let Cureton control, he delayed his pass before slicing through the Argyle defence with a wonderful pass.
It put Chambers through and although Curtis Nelson made an excellent tackle on the Daggers man, the ball rolled past Pilgrims keeper Luke McCormick and Ogogo burst from nowhere to smash into the net.
Daggers thoroughly deserved that goal and it was a wonderful move that created it and vindicated Chambers surprise inclusion.
Argyle should have levelled six minutes before half time, though, when Ayo Obileye misjudged a bouncing ball and Lewis Alessandra ran towards goal.
He got to the byline and put the ball on a plate for Reuben Reid. He, shockingly, fired over the bar from close range.
It was a let off for Daggers and showed how one lapse of concentration could see them punished, but they got to half time ahead.
They started the second period with an early effort as Andre Boucaud linked up with Cureton – he couldn’t test the away keeper though.
It was the home team that continued to look more threatening and they should have doubled their lead in the 52nd minute.
Cureton again worked tirelessly up top and nipped infront of his marker and passed into Luke Howell, who was in a great position.
He retained his composure, looked up and found Hemmings in space inside the area. But he hit the ball first time with the outside of his foot and didn’t make the most of the opportunity presented to him.
Daggers were playing some sensational football still and really taking it to one of the best teams in the league.
Boucaud was prominent in midfield and Howell continued to get in pockets of space alongside Chambers.
Plymouth reminded everyone of their threat in the 60th minute when Alessandra got a sniff at goal but Ogogo came across and blocked his effort.
It gave the visitors some impetus and they enjoyed a sustained spell of pressure, but Daggers remained compact and in the 67th minute they should have doubled their advantage.
Bingham won the ball and fed Cureton on the right, he cut inside and passed back to the central midfielder.
He found Chambers free, around eight-yards-out with just McCormick, but he side footed wide and it felt like a huge opportunity had been missed for the home team.
Daniel Carr was introduced with 15 minutes remaining to try and inject some life into Daggers with them starting to look slightly tired.
But they continued to close Plymouth down and when in possession they always seemed in control and it helped them continue to fashion chances.
Hemmings linked up with Joe Widdowson in the 80th minute and the left-back’s deep cross was met by Howell, but he headed over the bar.
The pressure started to come from the visitors now, but four minutes from time Daggers had another chance to put the game to bed.
Cureton plucked the ball out of the air, cut inside Nelson but smashed over the bar with just McCormick to beat.
Two minutes later and he didn’t miss as he raced onto a long ball and this time lobbed calmly over the Argyle keeper to make it 2-0.
It was a goal that Burnett’s team could have scored a lot earlier, but they finally had the breathing space they deserved.
The full time whistle shortly followed and it gave Daggers a wonderful win - without doubt their best of the season.
Dagenham & Redbridge: Cousins, Ogogo, Doe, Obileye, Widdowson, Howell, Bingham (Batt 90), Boucaud (Labadie 90), Hemmings, Chambers (Carr 75), Cureton.
Unused substitutes: Moore, Gayle, Jones, Jakubiak.
Plymouth Argyle: McCormick, Mellor, Nelson, Alessandra (Banton 61), R Reid, Dennis, McHugh, B Reid, O’Connor (Blizzard 61), Lee (Brunt 77), Hartley.
Unused substitutes: Bittner, Purrington, Harvey.
Attendance: 1,713 (507 Plymouth Argyle supporters).