Burnett heaps praise on Dagenham & Redbridge stars
PUBLISHED: 10:30 30 September 2015
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Dagers manager pleased with Jones and O’Brien after Notts County draw
Dagenham & Redbridge boss Wayne Burnett insists Jodi Jones is still a work in progress after the youngster’s wonder strike earned the hosts a 1-1 draw against Notts County.
The east Londoners had looked lacklustre in the first half, barely creating any chances before Adam Campbell put the Magpies into a 34th minute lead.
Daggers were much improved after half time though, with Jones trying his best to trick his way down the right but saw his path blocked on several occassions by Alan Sheehan.
That may have forced Jones’ hand when it came to his 72nd-minute goal, as the winger cut inside after a quick counter before curling the ball into the top left corner from 25 yards.
Burnett lavished praise on the leveller but also admitted moments of magic like that have come to be expected of Jones.
“It was a fantastic finish from young Jodi,” said Burnett. “He’s got the ability to produce something like that and that’s why he’s so sought after. He’s only 17 and there’s still more to come.
“We’re really pleased we managed to keep hold of him in the summer. He probably hasn’t played as much as he would like but we have to manage him.
“He trained earlier in the week and said he was tired. We have to look after him, make sure he is right for us but more importantly make sure he is right for himself too.”
Burnett also admitted the circumstances that Jones’ goal came in had drained the boss, with Daggers equalising less than a minute after Liam O’Brien brilliantly denied Campbell and County a second of the night.
The stopper has impressed since taking over between the sticks from last year’s player of the season runner-up Mark Cousins last month.
But much like Jones and his moments of magic, the Dagenham manager says he has come to expect O’Brien to deny the opposition in such fantastic fashion.
“Strangely enough, he’s paid to make saves and he made a fantastic one. We then go up the other end and score – that’s football.
“We later hit the crossbar and they go up the other end and get a penalty. It was a topsy-turvy game and there was a rollercoaster of emotions.
“It’s made me tired because the emotions are up and down.”
O’Brien was later called into action again, pushing away Izale McLeod’s penalty with just over 10 minutes left on the clock and the scores level.
The penalty was awarded after Andre Boucaud was adjudged to have fouled Jack Barmby in the box but Burnett believes it was a soft decision.
“I didn’t think it was a penalty. We radioed up to our analyst who was filming the game and said it wasn’t a penalty.
“I don’t think it was a penalty but Liam’s made a fantastic save. The emotions have changed again.”
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