The Daggers were unlucky to fall to a 3-2 away defeat against Burton Albion, in a thoroughly entertaining game.
Dwight Gayle opened the scoring after pouncing on Michael Spillane’s saved penalty. Then two goals in two minutes for the home side gave them the lead only for substitute Sam Williams to equalise with 12 minutes remaining. Billy Kee had the last laugh though as his stunning strike gave the hosts all three points.
An unchanged starting XI was named following last weeks 5-0 thrashing of Rotherham United; Jake Reed kept his place upfront while new loan signing from Blackpool, Jake Caprice, was on the bench.
Having come off the back of two straight League wins, John Still’s men were lucky not to fall behind 14 minutes in. Firstly, Billy Kee’s header looped over Chris Lewington to hit the post after Femi Ilesanmi’s header back was too weak. Then it took an inspired double save from ‘keeper Lewington just 30 seconds later as he prevented the Brewers from taking the lead.
The home side were well on top and it was starting to look like a one man show for the Daggers, as Lewington was again on hand to keep Burton Albion at bay. This time Chris Palmer’s wicked free-kick looked to be heading in, only for the outstretched arm of Lewington to prevent them once again.
Completely against the run of play, the Daggers were awarded a penalty when ‘keeper Dean Lyness upended Jake Reed in the box. Michael Spillane saw his effort from the spot pushed onto the post, but Dwight Gayle was in the right place to tap in and give his side a half-time lead.
The away side made a particularly bad start to the second period. On 50 minutes, former Dagger, Damien McCrory, somehow kept the ball in down the left-hand side and after cutting in, his deflected shot from 20 yards looped over the helpless Lewington to equalise.
Burton couldn’t believe their luck as things got worse for the visitors just a minute later. When a long ball was put behind the Daggers defensive line, a short back-pass was met by substitute Matt Paterson, who slid the ball under the oncoming ‘keeper to give the Brewers a surprise lead.
With Dagenham becoming the dominant side after those quick-fire goals, they found a leveller through substitute Sam Williams. The bandaged Luke Wilkinson provided the knock-down just inside the box for Williams to control and smash past Lyness to level the scores.
From kick-off though, the hosts regained their lead through a stunning Billy Kee strike. With the ball bouncing up 25-yards out, Kee took control and hit a dipping volley into the top corner; much to the jubilation of the home support.
Despite the 5 minutes of additional time, the Daggers couldn’t find another goal as they left the Pirelli Stadium pointless.
Burton Albion: Lyness (GK); Stanton, Diamond (c), Weir, Zola (Paterson, 21 (Holness, 87)), Palmer (Dyer, 69), McCrory, Maghoma, O’Connor, Bell, Kee
Subs not used: Atkins (GK), McGrath, Taylor, Richards
Goalscorers: McCrory, 51, Paterson, 53, Kee, 79
Daggers: Lewington (GK); Ogogo (c), Wilkinson, Doe, Ilesanmi; Elito, Spillane, Saunders (Bingham, 64), Howell; Gayle, Reed (Williams, 69)
Subs not used: Seabright (GK), Hoyte, Caprice, Maher, Woodall
Goalscorers: Gayle, 29, Williams, 78