Daggers cut through Bantams

COCA-COLA LEAGUE TWO Dagenham & Redbridge 3 Bradford City 0 A SPARKLING second half performance from Dagenham & Redbridge saw them crush fellow play-off chasers Bradford City and maintain their hopes of promotion, writes MIKE SIMMONDS. After a first half

COCA-COLA LEAGUE TWO

Dagenham & Redbridge 3 Bradford City 0

A SPARKLING second half performance from Dagenham & Redbridge saw them crush fellow play-off chasers Bradford City and maintain their hopes of promotion, writes MIKE SIMMONDS.

After a first half which had seen space at a premium and players from both teams drawn into a midfield battle, it was all change after the break.


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Daggers were given a huge slice of luck when Peter Thorne nodded Luke O'Brien's cross into the net, but referee Pat Miller ruled it out for a push on debutant keeper David Button by Paul Mullin.

The decision looked harsh at best, and Button even admitted so afterwards, but Daggers took full advantage with 57 minutes on the clock.

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Winger Sam Saunders, who has enjoyed such a prolific season in front of goal, cut in from the left flank and curled a beauty past Rhys Evans from just inside the box.

It was the third goal in three games for the former Carshalton man, and his 12th of a superb campaign.

As usual, the hosts didn't sit back on the one-goal advantage, and full back Scott Griffiths almost broke his prolonged drought in front of goal, but saw his header cannon against the crossbar,

Bradford almost found a way back into the match when Lee Bullock's glancing header hit the post with Button beaten, but it was soon all over.

A long ball from Griffiths found Ben Strevens in acres of space and he nicked the ball past Matthew Clarke for Paul Benson to run on to and slot past Evans.

It was 3-0 moments later as Glen Southam's ball forward was completely missed by Evans and Strevens was there to tap home.

There had been precious little action to write home about in the opening 45 minutes with all eyes on Button, who had been signed as an emergency loan to replace the injured Tony Roberts.

His first touch looked a little hesitant as he collided with Magnus Okuonghae when taking a cross, but he grew in confidence and his kicking almost produced a goal, but Evans claimed the ball under his crossbar.

In fact, City should have taken the lead, but Thorne had an off day in front of goal, putting two efforts off target, while Chris Brandon also missed with a header.

Thorne had another strike chalked off, when his deft lob was rightly ruled offside, while Daggers best chance came through Peter Gain, but his fierce volley was deflected off the line by Paul Arnison.

The only disappointing aspect of the day, was a crowd of just over 1,800 with more than 400 from Bradford, especially after Still had called for more supporters through the gate.

They missed a dominant second half display, and with three games to go, there still remains every chance of that final play-off position.

Daggers Button 6, Foster 7, Griffiths 8, Arber 8, Okuonghae 8, Saunders 7 (Guy 86), Gain 8, Taiwo 9, Ritchie 6 (Southam 77), Benson 7 (Montgomery 90), Strevens 8.

Subs not used: Hogan, Uddin.

Attendance: 1,883 (inc 434 away fans)

What did you make of Daggers performance on Saturday? Email your views to: sport@ilfordrecorder.co.uk

The Recorder is now on Twitter, so if you follow twitter.com/Recorder_DagRed then you will get up to the minute updates on goings on at Victoria Road.

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