Murphy ends Daggers goal drought and secures crucial win
PUBLISHED: 18:17 03 January 2015 | UPDATED: 18:17 03 January 2015
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Sky Bet League Two: Dagenham & Redbridge 1 Bury 0
Rhys Murphy was the hero at Victoria Road as he ended Daggers drought in front of goal and ensured they started 2015 with a win.
The former Arsenal youngster scored the only goal of the game against Bury to move Wayne Burnett’s team out of the bottom two.
The hosts were fortunate not to give away a penalty towards the end of the match and were forced to put in various last ditch blocks.
But the only important thing for Daggers was the result and the 1-0 success meant they could start the new year positively and celebrate a league win for the first time since November 29, when they won 2-0 at Bury.
Burnett made one change to the side that drew with Southend United as Andre Boucaud dropped to the bench with Rhys Murphy promoted to the starting team.
The big news on the substitutes bench was the inclusion of Zavon Hines, the first time he has been included since February 22 against Plymouth Argyle.
Despite heavy rainfall at Victoria Road, the efforts of groundsman Ian Manhood and assistant David Rose ensured the pitch was in top condition.
Bury made the better start to the match and had the first shot of note, but Hallum Hope’s long range drive was comfortably held by Mark Cousins.
Daggers conceded several corners in the opening exchanges of the match, but the visitors failed to make the most of them.
Hope came close to opening the scoring after 12 minutes, but his shot from close to the byline was pushed away by Cousins.
Chris Hussey produced a dangerous ball across the box soon after, but no one was able to convert for Bury.
Burnett’s side had started nervously and a cheap corner given away after 18 minutes – when Ayo Obileye clearance hit Ashley Chambers and went out of play – summed up the lack of confidence.
Nick Adams volley from the edge of the box, from the aforementioned corner, nearly provided the opening goal. But it flew just over the bar, despite Cousins appearing to get a touch.
The hosts did slowly grow in confidence, though. Murphy and Jamie Cureton showed some promising signs before Daggers won a succession of free kicks near to the Bury goal.
Chambers took the first and found Cureton, but his near post header went over the bar.
Bingham’s stood over the next and had an effort blocked, before Chambers curled another into the box. But Robert Lainton grasped it well.
Daggers came closest to opening the scoring with six minutes remaining in the half when Cureton won the ball deep inside Bury’s half.
He composed himself before his cross into the box took a deflection. Murphy ran onto the centre, but Lainton blocked his close range effort.
Although three minutes were added on at the end of the half neither side was able to find the opening goal and it remained deadlocked at the break.
The half time whistle meant Burnett’s side had gone over seven hours without finding the net.
The wait for a goal was to end shortly, though, and it would have been a massive relief for the goalscorer as well.
Bingham had a shot from outside the Bury box deflected up into the air and Murphy gambled brilliantly and volleyed past Lainton for the opener after 51 minutes.
It was pure relief for the 24-year-old and everyone inside the stadium supporting the home side.
The goal was Murphy’s first in the league since finding the net against Rochdale on February 1 last year and Daggers firs in seven hours and six minutes of league football.
Poignantly Murphy wheeled off in celebration and hugged boss Burnett following his strike, it was a goal they both desperately needed.
Bury hit back shortly afterwards and came close to equalising twice in the 64th minute.
First Ryan Lowe smashed an effort against the post from close range with Cousins well beaten. The Daggers keeper then clawed away Andrew Tutte’s shot as the hosts looked to preserve their lead.
The pressure continued to build and build and Daggers were forced to make several last ditch clearances as the game entered the last 20 minutes.
Burnett responded to the pressure by introducing Damian Batt and Andre Boucaud in place of Partridge and Joss Labadie.
And it did help stem the tide as the bombardment from the away side eased and Cureton came close to linking up with Murphy for a second.
Nathan Cameron made a timely clearance, though, but it gave Daggers confidence going into the final 10.
Referee Ian Williamson made a key decision seven minutes from time and this time luck sided with Burnett and his team.
Bury substitute Danny Rose carried the ball into the box and came together with Obileye before falling to the ground.
But Williamson blew his whistle and awarded a free-kick in Daggers favour and booked the Shakers forward.
It was a huge decision and definitely an incident where it easily could have been a spot-kick, but the rub of the green went Daggers way.
Connors made a crucial block from Tutte’s shot as the game ticked into the 90th minute.
Five minutes were added on for stoppages and substitute Andre Boucaud cleared Danny Jones effort of the line in addition time.
Scott Doe also made a superb block to preserve the lead and when Rose shot wide from outside the box that was essentially that, Cousins took the goal kick and the full time whistle followed.
A huge roar erupted inside Victoria Road as Burnett’s side picked up a crucial three points and moved out of the relegation places up to 21st in the table.
Dagenham & Redbridge: Cousins, Connors, Doe, Obileye, Partridge (Batt 72), Hemmings, Bingham, Labadie (Boucaud 72), Chambers, Murphy (Yusuff 83), Cureton.
Unused substitutes: O’Brien, Saah, Hines, Howell.
Bury: Lainton, Tutte, El-Abd, Etuhu (Dudley 83), Hope (Rose 57), Adams (Jones 66), Mayor, Hussey, Lowe, Soares, Cameron.
Unused substitutes: Ruddy, McNulty, Sedgwick, Burgess.
Attendance: 1877 (245 Bury supporters).