Benson back for final push

STRIKER Paul Benson has set his sights on returning to the Dagenham & Redbridge side to spearhead their faltering play-off push, writes MIKE SIMMONDS. Benson has been out of action since Daggers drew 2-2 at Bury, six games ago, as he underwent an operatio

STRIKER Paul Benson has set his sights on returning to the Dagenham & Redbridge side to spearhead their faltering play-off push, writes MIKE SIMMONDS.

Benson has been out of action since Daggers drew 2-2 at Bury, six games ago, as he underwent an operation to remove floating cartilage in his left knee and hopes to be back next month.

In his absence, the Victoria Road club have picked up just one win and scored only four times, a run that has seen them drop to ninth place, five points off the play-offs.

"Hopefully, I'll be back in training in two or three weeks," revealed the striker, who has scored 16 goals in all competitions this season.


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"I thought I would be out a bit longer, but the prognosis is good and the forecast is good.

"The rehab is going well, it feels okay and I'm getting stronger all the time.

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"We just need to get the season back on track and we will do it. We'll get back into it and start scoring again. Hopefully, that will help push us back into the play-off places."

Daggers have tried a number of players up front since Benson's injury, but although the likes of Jon Nurse and Wesley Thomas have given everything for the cause, they haven't got the potency of a fit and firing Benson.

Colchester striker Jamie Guy has joined on loan, and Benson is expecting big things from the frontman.

"I've seen him a couple of times, he's a very good player and will add something to us," said the forward.

"It's hard for 'Nursey' because he's trying his best and just needs a goal. It's difficult to play centre forward, as you have your back to goal 90 per cent of the time and Jon is best suited slightly wider where he can drive at people."

The 28-year-old watched from the sidelines as Daggers put in a woeful performance to lose 3-0 against Lincoln City on Tuesday night.

They were never at the races for the 90 minutes, and Benson was sure that throwing away a 2-0 lead at Chester on Saturday, would have been playing on their mind.

"I don't know how the players are feeling at moment, but after going 2-0 up on Saturday and letting the lead slip is hard to take," he said.

"It's difficult to get yourself up for a game three days later and it's a tough spell for them. We've got a small squad as it is, but it's hard to put them down after a result like that, they've just got to try and pick themselves up for Saturday.

"Lincoln are a good side and I was very impressed with them.

"They came here with a game plan, they are a big, strong, physical side, and I don't think we could match them on the day.

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