Dagenham & Redbridge ready after 'good pre-season' says McMahon

Dagenham & Redbridge manager Daryl McMahon ahead of the 2022-23 National League season

Dagenham & Redbridge manager Daryl McMahon ahead of the 2022-23 National League season - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

Daryl McMahon feels his Dagenham & Redbridge squad are ready for the new National League campaign after a 'good pre-season'.

Daggers welcome Gateshead to Victoria Road on Saturday, having ended their preparations with a 1-1 draw against West Ham United's U23s last weekend.

And the boss is pleased with how his players have progressed in recent weeks, with just one blot on their preparations.

"The one disappointment is losing Angelo [Balanta]," he said, referring to the Colombian's latest injury.

"You want to get through pre-season with a clean bill of health. But other than that I think it's been a good pre-season.

"The new players have bedded in really well, the guys that have come back from last season have shown the same appetite to improve and kick on.

"I've said this many times in pre-season, you just want to get the minutes into people's legs and have people in good form.

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"I feel like we've got a lot of players who have had a good pre-season, now we look to bed down a team from Monday morning and look forward to Gateshead here on Saturday.

"We'll be zoning in and really tying down what Gateshead look like, in terms of their formation and style of play, give the guys their strengths and weaknesses through what we see them as.

"We know Gateshead will come here as a promoted team, looking forward to the game as you do when you win promotion. We've got to make sure we're about our business when we turn up here next weekend."

Regan Clayton gave the young Hammers a 17th-minute lead with a low drilled finish, but Omar Mussa went close to levelling just before the break.

Daggers created chances after the restart and levelled on 72 minutes when Angelo Ogbonna sliced an inswinging cross from the right into his own net.

And it ended all square, with McMahon adding: "I thought it was a really good game, competitive game.

"The disappointment from our perspective is we had so many chances that we didn't take, but great we created them.

"Now we look forward to get ready for Gateshead."

Defender Nik Tavares impressed in a central midfield role in the second half after replacing Dean Rance and McMahon praised the efforts of the former Wealdstone man.

"I think it's a position he can definitely play, you've seen that in the second half," he said.

"Tactically he is excellent, he's got everything to play in there.

"I think Nik is a really, really talented player. One of the reasons why we signed him is because he can play in numerous positions as well.

"He's a thinker, he reads the game really well and I thought he put in a very good performance in that second half."