Report: Dartford 3-0 Weymouth
By Jude Harding
Weymouth suffered defeat this afternoon at Princes Park to 2nd placed Dartford. A strong performance by substitute Alex Wall helped The Darts to a 3-0 win. The game did have its moments and, at times, a very end to end game.
This scrappy game was kicked off with Weymouth having a couple of early chances within the first 10 minutes of the game. The first attempt was with a free kick for Weymouth, in the 4th minute, where Ahkeem Rose stepped up to take the 30-yard free kick and ended up hitting the wall. The pressure continued from Weymouth and another free kick came our way with Xander McBurnie putting the ball into the box where centre half Ben Gerring is there to head it on, but unfortunately it goes off target and the chance goes begging.
Weymouth had a lot of possession during that period of the half and were happy to try and find ways to potentially punish Dartford, who didn’t create much until the 11th minute, where a great cross was whipped into the box, cleared by a brave punch from The Terras goalkeeper, Zaki Oualah. Dartford had a period of attacking play, with it resulting in a goal for Joshua Johnson, who picked the ball up on the edge of the box, with space around him, and fired it into the bottom left-hand corner past Oualah. Dartford led 1-0 after 14 minutes.
The Terras reacted well to going a goal down and had a great chance to equalise in the 20th minute, with Keelan O’Connell making a brilliant run between two defenders, controlling a long ball from Teddy Howe with his chest and attempting to chip The Darts goalkeeper, Joe Young, who managed to catch the ball before looping over his head.
Weymouth again got in control of the game and continued to play nice football and created a couple of chances that unfortunately had no end product. Weymouth still played with intent and looked for a goal to get themselves back into the game.
Dartford were trying hard to get a second goal before half time with a couple of nice long balls which were dealt with well by the Terras back line, with the first half ending 1-0 to The Darts.
Dartford piled on the pressure in the second half and created two early chances from wide areas with one being tipped over the bar by a strong hand from Oualah.
During the 55th minute, Weymouth won a free kick in a dangerous area around the 18-yard box with Brad Ash hitting the free kick into the 5-man wall.
Mitch Parker, who came on for Ahkeem Rose, joined the action and took a long throw-in which led to a corner. The corner failed to reach the head of a Weymouth player and The Darts had a counterattack being led by Luke Coulson, who played it out wide, but the cross was blocked well. Dartford still pushed for another goal and decided to make a substitution, bringing on Alex Wall for Charlie Sheringham. This tactical decision paid off well, as a penalty was awarded for a handball in the box, which Alex Wall converted from the spot.
This second goal didn’t stop The Terras from pressing and playing their usual style of football. As just 2 minutes after conceding, Weymouth sub, Tom Blair, crossed the ball which set up nicely for Tom Bearwish who volleyed it inches wide of the post. With 10 minutes to go Ben Gerring is looking to play out from the back and his pass is intercepted and is played to Wall from Pierre Fonkeu, who forces a great save from Oualah to keep it 2-0.
Dartford pushed for another goal to seal the victory which they were able to do, as during the 87th minute, Fonkeu beats 2 defenders and sets the ball up for Alex Wall who cuts in on his left foot and beats Oualah at his near post.
The game started to slow down in the last few minutes during added time and Weymouth had one last chance to salvage something from this game, but a header from Tom Bearwish flew just over the cross bar from a Tom Blair cross. The game ended 3-0 to the Darts.
Weymouth now looking ahead to next weekend’s fixture against AFC Wimbledon in the FA Cup on Saturday.