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Match Report

 

Posted Tue 19 Jan 10 at 07:18 AM

Daggers 2 Crewe 0

The Daggers made the most of their break as they defeated Crewe Alexandra at the L.B.B.D Stadium.

It had been a little under a month since the Daggers last lined up on a football field and there had been a few changes at the club. Marlon Pack made his first start for the club while Peter Gain returned from suspension. Abu Ogogo also returned to the right back berth.

The rain eased as the game kicked off and it looked like both teams were enjoying the slick surface early on. Paul Benson looked to benefit, hitting a shot into the side-netting while Clayton Donaldson's touch let him down rather as Crewe worked a good opportunity for the striker.

Crewe looked particularly dangerous from their set-pieces and from one of their several early corners, Matt Mitchel-King forced Tony Roberts into making the game's first save.

They perhaps really should have taken the lead after a quarter of an hour. Shaun Miller burst clear of Ogogo before pulling the ball for Stephen Schumacher to strike at goal. Schumacher however got his effort all wrong and sliced his shot wide of goal.

At the other Josh Scott's power and pace took into the Crewe penalty area. He aimed his shot for the bottom corner only for Matt Tootle to get in the way.

Danny Green then sent over a dangerous cross that Benson directed towards goal. Steve Phillips in the Crewe goal was in the right place to make the save.

Dario Gradi's sides are noted for their passing football and a fine move allowed John Brayford to go clear on the right. His cross looked to be heading for Miller but Scoot Doe put in a crucial interception to keep the score goalless.

Doe's challenge looked even more important as the Daggers opened the scoring with some equally good football. They worked the ball out to Green who drove at his defender and stood up a good cross. It allowed Scott to attack the ball and glance his header into the far corner.

The goal clearly galvanised the home side. Ogogo ran virtually the length of the field to force a corner from which his skipper Mark Arber headed wide.

The Daggers confidence was rewarded with a second goal before the break. Danny Spiller who passed and probed all afternoon, found Green with a simple pass, who then set up a shot which he placed with tremendous accuracy to beat Phillips and find the bottom corner.

Green almost scored from the restart. Latching on to a loose ball the former Northampton man ran at the Crewe defence and forced Phillips to block his shot. The keeper got up to make another block this time from Benson.

Crewe came out looking for a goal to get them back in the game and they almost got it not long into the second half. Mitchel-King headed a corner towards goal and was denied by a brilliant one handed save by Roberts who clawed the ball to safety.

The Daggers offside trap however seemed to be working well, constantly frustrating the two strikers. The home side sprung an attack themselves. Pack found Scott who drove once more at the visitors. His cross-cum-shot saw the ball fly across the face of goal with Benson unable to reach it.

Gradi tried to shuffle his forward line but to limited effect. Their best opportunity came from a Donaldson cross that was headed up rather than clear by Arber. Schumacher tried to head the ball towards goal but got no power and Roberts gathered comfortably.

Benson lifted a shot over but Crewe's threat seemed to have eased. It allowed the Daggers to make a couple of changes with both Jon Nurse and Graeme Montgomery given opportunities to impress.

Schumacher had one last chance to make a late comeback. He hit a fine shot from the edge of the area but Roberts was in no mood to be beaten as he made yet another fine stop.

Att: 1.951 (286 Crewe)

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