It’s just the Pitts as Daggers lose!

COCA-COLA LEAGUE TWO Dagenham & Redbridge 0 Wycombe Wanderers 1 by MIKE SIMMONDS A MOMENT of sheer quality from striker Jon-Paul Pittman condemned Dagenham & Redbridge to defeat on Tuesday night. There seemed little on when, just after the break, Pittma

COCA-COLA LEAGUE TWO

Dagenham & Redbridge 0

Wycombe Wanderers 1

by MIKE SIMMONDS


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A MOMENT of sheer quality from striker Jon-Paul Pittman condemned Dagenham & Redbridge to defeat on Tuesday night.

There seemed little on when, just after the break, Pittman received a pass from Tommy Doherty, with his back to goal.

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But a delightful turn was too good for Mark Arber and the former Crawley striker burst into the box, before clinically finishing into the bottom corner.

Defeat was particularly harsh on Daggers, who had done more than enough to get at least a point for their endeavours.

They were by far the better side in the opening 30 minutes, with Matt Ritchie a menace on the wing once more, while Doug Loft made a number of crunching challenges in midfield.

Manager John Still opted to drop Solomon Taiwo to the bench for Glen Southam, and his side took the game to their opponents from the off.

An excellent cross from Ritchie was headed wide by Jon Nurse, before Daggers thought they had taken the lead moments after when the on-loan Portsmouth winger's ball into the box was turned in by Ben Strevens.

The goal would have been quite ironic as Wanderers tried to buy Strevens in the transfer window, but his celebrations were cut short by a linesman's flag, presumably for offside.

Ritchie had another shot off target, as did Southam, while Pittman gave notice of his threat, flashing a drive across goal after beating Arber to the ball.

Both sides had settled into their stride in the latter stages of the half as the game became more of a midfield battle, but if anything, it was the hosts who always carried the greater threat.

After the break, Ritchie's low effort just eluded Nurse, but Daggers were quickly undone by Pittman's lethal strike.

The visitors somehow maintained their lead when Ritchie, who was at the heart of everything, showed stunning control before taking the ball on and seeing his chip palmed away by Jamie Young.

From the rebound, Loft's piledriver was somehow blocked by the Wycombe defence, who showed a commendable willingness to throw their bodies on the line at every opportunity.

Wanderers don't possess the meanest defence in the league for nothing and although Gary Holt had one shot easily saved by Roberts, you got the feeling they weren't in the mood to concede.

The absence of Paul Benson, although not keenly felt on Saturday, did start to become apparent as the game wore on.

Nurse will always be a willing deputy, but much of his best work was done outside the penalty area.

There is no doubting his ability to win headers and free kicks, but Daggers lacked a striker who was prepared to take a chance and get into the box, something that Benson thrives on.

The hosts showed plenty of endeavour as the half wore on, but lacked the fluency of their first half performance.

With five minutes of injury time, Daggers threw everything at their visitors with even Roberts coming up for a late corner, but to no avail.

They almost broke through in stunning fashion, but Scott Griffiths' drive was once again blocked by a Wycombe shirt, as his side dropped further away from the play-off places.

Daggers: Roberts 7, Foster 7, Griffiths 7, Arber 7, Okuonghae 8, Saunders 7, Southam 7, Loft 8, *Ritchie 8, Strevens 7, Nurse 6 (Thomas 76, 5)

Subs Not used: Hogan, Taiwo, Tejan-Sie, Montgomery,

Att: 2,242 (inc 530 away fans)

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