Search

Two years in charge for Daggers boss Burnett

17:00 26 February 2015

All smiles from Dagenham & Redbridge manager Wayne Burnett (pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO).

All smiles from Dagenham & Redbridge manager Wayne Burnett (pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO).

Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY - FA Premier League and Football Leagu

Wayne Burnett was handed the role as interim manager on February 26 2013

Dagenham & Redbridge manager Wayne Burnett claps the away fans at the end of the game against Morecambe (pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO).Dagenham & Redbridge manager Wayne Burnett claps the away fans at the end of the game against Morecambe (pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO).

Two years ago today John Still left Dagenham & Redbridge to take over then Conference Premier outfit Luton Town and assistant manager Wayne Burnett was left to pick up the pieces.

Burnett was appointed interim manager until the end of the 2012/13 season and tasked with keeping the Victoria Road club in the Football League.

Dagenham & Redbridge manager Wayne Burnett takes charge for the first time at Bradford City on February 27 2013 (pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO).Dagenham & Redbridge manager Wayne Burnett takes charge for the first time at Bradford City on February 27 2013 (pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO).

He managed that, only just, as Daggers lost to York City on the final day of the season but stayed in League Two on goal difference after Barnet lost 2-0 to Northampton Town and took the final relegation spot.

Daggers and Burnett have come a long way since then and a major restructure of the first team squad and the youth set up has taken place.

Rhys Murphy of Dagenham & Redbridge scores the opening goal against Bury - his last for the club (pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO).Rhys Murphy of Dagenham & Redbridge scores the opening goal against Bury - his last for the club (pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO).

And as Burnett approaches his 100th competitive game in charge of the club this weekend at Mansfield Town, we look back at some of the highs and lows of his reign over the past two years.

The era after Still started with a tricky looking match at Bradford City, who had just lost 5-0 in the Capital One Cup final days earlier.

Zavon Hines isn't expected to be fit again this season (pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO).Zavon Hines isn't expected to be fit again this season (pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO).

Burnett and his players gave the Bantams a guard of honour before kick-off at Valley Parade, but were unlucky not to leave with three points after Luke Howell’s 69th minute opener.

A header from James Hanson four minutes from time earned Phil Parkinson’s team a draw. The point would be a crucial one for Daggers, though, as they remained in the Football League following a dramatic final day.

Jamie Cureton of Dagenham & Redbridge is congratulated after scoring the third goal at Morecambe, the 249th league goal of his career (pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO)Jamie Cureton of Dagenham & Redbridge is congratulated after scoring the third goal at Morecambe, the 249th league goal of his career (pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO)

What followed during the summer of 2013 was some astute transfer by Burnett as former West Ham United youngster Zavon Hines was signed and Rhys Murphy, who started his career at Arsenal, was also brought in.

The pair were hugely successful as Murphy scored 13 times and Hines contributed eight goals during the campaign as well as producing various assists.

Daggers started the season slowly – winning just one of their opening six fixtures before they recorded five victories during September and October to suggest a promising season was on the horizon.

They also pulled off a couple of stunning results in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy by thrashing Colchester United and Southend United by three goals.

Peterborough United did knock them out in the Southern section quarter-finals, but positivity remained at Victoria Road.

Results remained up and down, but following the relegation scare the previous season a mid-table finish would be a welcome boost.

And an impressive unbeaten run through March, despite losing key players Murphy and Hines to injury, gave Daggers small hope of reaching the play-offs.

But defeats to Wycombe Wanderers and Portsmouth extinguished those dreams. A win at Cheltenham Town on the final day of the 2013/14 campaign did ensure an excellent ninth place finish for the club.

After such an encouraging season hopes were high for the current campaign and a plethora of talent moved to Victoria Road in the summer to suggest a play-off push could be possible.

Experienced veteran Jamie Cureton signed alongside the likes of Ashley Hemmings, Ashley Chambers, Joss Labadie and Damian Batt.

But the absence of Murphy and Hines through injury and Elito departure to Holland meant a poor start to the campaign with the new signings failing to gel immediately as well.

Back-to-back victories at the end of August gave renewed hope, but three consecutive defeats hinted that this wouldn’t be another comfortable season for the club.

Two brilliant goals from non-league recruit Ade Yusuff offered joy in October with a 2-1 win at Accrington Stanley, but a tendency to concede late on had crept into Burnett’s team.

A disappointing FA Cup exit to Conference Premier Southport followed in November and before Daggers home meeting with Carlisle United on November 22, pressure was mounting.

But a stunning display of attacking football followed as Chambers inspired Daggers to a 4-2 victory and they followed that up by making three loan signings that would be crucial.

Central defender Ayo Obileye joined from Charlton Athletic, forward Alex Jakubiak signed from Watford and left-back Joe Widdowson joined from Bury.

The latter has now made his switch permanent, but Jakubiak and Obileye have been important players in helping Daggers move away from the relegation places.

Obileye, in particular, has become a huge favourite with the supporters and formed an excellent partnership with Scott Doe in recent weeks.

Daggers lost to Burton Albion 3-1 last weekend, but were on a five-match unbeaten run before that and all the signs point towards them surviving this season.

Burnett hasn’t always been the most popular person amongst the Victoria Road faithful, but there have been plenty of ups and downs over the past 24 months.

Ahead of his hundredth match in charge of Daggers this weekend he boasts a record of 29 victories, 27 draws and 43 defeats in all competitions – the 6-6 tie with Brentford in the JPT this season was included as a defeat following a 4-2 shoot-out exit.

He has brought several talented players to the club during his tenure in charge and helped the development of various youngsters too with Jodi Jones the next to emerge from Daggers promising academy, which has been awarded category 3 status under the Governing Bodies Elite Player Performance Plan.

They are 14 matches remaining this season and it seems likely Burnett will steer the club further and further away from the relegation zone and he’ll hope to mark his milestone match with a win at Mansfield.

Top goalscorers under Burnett’s reign:

14 - Rhys Murphy

12 – Abu Ogogo and Jamie Cureton

11 – Medy Elito

9 – Luke Howell

8 – Zavon Hines

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Barking and Dagenham Post visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Barking and Dagenham Post staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Barking and Dagenham Post account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Barking and Dagenham Sports News

14:00
Oliver Hawkins of Dagenham & Redbridge celebrates his hat-trick against Wrexham (pic: David Simpson/TGS Photo)

Daggers hitman proud to get hat-trick at home to Robins

Yesterday, 14:45
Dagenham & Redbridge celebrate the second goal against Wrexham (pic: David Simpson/TGS PhotoO

Daggers coach pleased with forward’s all-round display against Robins

Yesterday, 14:10
Oliver Hawkins of Dagenham & Redbridge scores the first goal of his hat-trick against Wrexham (pic: David Simpson/TGS Photo)

National League: Dagenham & Redbridge 3 (Hawkins 10, 23, 45) Wrexham 0

Yesterday, 07:00
Oliver Hawkins of Dagenham & Redbridge (pic: David Simpson/TGS Photo)

Daggers forward missed last weekend’s win at Woking with a back injury

Fri, 22:13
Edward Kennett of Lakeside Hammers (pic: Rob Newell/TGSPHOTO)

Coventry Bees 57 Lakeside Hammers 33

Fri, 17:30
Paul Benson congratulates Craig Robson after scoring for Dagenham & Redbridge at Woking (pic: David Simpson/TGS Photo)

Daggers attacker knows Robins will provide stern opposition

Fri, 16:49
London Lions have signed Derek Hall

Centre joins Copper Box outfit

Fri, 15:00
The new rugby season is almost here (pic: Mick Kearns/TGSPHOTO)

Ex-British & Irish Lions centre content with what he’s seen during pre-season

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read sport

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

You could win £15,000 to spend on either their mortgage or a deposit towards the home of their dreams

Wouldn’t it be lovely to have a period of time when you simply don’t have to worry about finding the money each month to pay your mortgage? When you don’t have to put money aside from your monthly income, or worry about having to afford other essential outgoings?

Which book character do you share cleaning habits with?

Whether you have more in common with put-upon Cinderella, emotionally turbulent Jane Eyre, or easily distracted Mole, you’re sure to appreciate that one lucky winner will receive four sessions of free cleaning. Enter our quiz for your chance to win. All runners up will get £10 off their first clean when making a repeat booking.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Barking and Dagenham Post
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now