2 September 2023. Dartford lose 1:0 after Dave Simms-Burgess scored on 62'.
Dartford suffered a narrow defeat at Wordsworth Drive, as Dave Sims-Burgess’ second-half goal proved to be decisive in a game of fine margins. There was very little in the way of goalmouth action for a majority of the first forty-five, as both sides set about cancelling each other out. However, Taunton’s Dan Lavercombe was the first goalkeeper to prevent an attempt on goal, when he managed to deal with Luke Coulson’s dangerous ball into the box (15). The hosts followed suit shortly after, when an excellent run and cross by Austen Booth was met by the calm hands of Mitchell Beeney (22). The goalkeeper then thwarted Nat Jarvis by intercepting Lloyd James’ ball (33), before making a routine save to prevent James from scoring soon afterwards (37). Five minutes before half-time Taunton's Lloyd James saved the hosts at the other end with a timely goal-line clearance following Maxwell Statham’s excellent ball into the box (42).
The second forty-five was equally as slow in getting going, as a bulk of the play remained in the middle of the park. The Peacocks were first to react by throwing on Dave Sims-Burgess to replace a rather unhappy Ross Stearn (53). They’d go on to make one more substitution this afternoon, as Nick McCootie came on for Nat Jarvis in the 62nd minute. The game played out as fine margins more-or-less decided which way the points were going this afternoon… A superb move and effort by Tyrell Miller-Rodney was saved well by Dan Lavercombe (59), before Taunton’s initial substitution worked in their favour three minutes later. A long-ball found Ollie Chamberlain, who controlled the ball well before cutting inside. His neat ball was then headed back across the Dartford box, leaving Dave Sims-Burgess to nod it home to break the deadlock (62). The goal spurred the hosts on and they were unlucky to not score a second when Lloyd James set up Chamberlain, only for the latter to miss the target in the 66th minute. Paul Rooney came close for the visitors (78), as they pressed forward to try and find an equaliser, but the Taunton defence virtually dealt with the danger to see out the game.
The result sees the Darts remain mid-table, in what is certainly promising to be another highly competitive National League South season.
Alan Dowson went on to use all three of his available substitutions, with the first being Charlie Sheringham coming on for Tyrell Miller-Rodney (65). That would be followed by James Golding coming off for West Ham loanee Archie Woods (76), before George Whitefield replaced Moussa Diarra in the 89th minute.
TAUNTON TOWN: Dan Lavercombe, Nick Grimes (c), Austen Booth, Ollie Chamberlain, Lloyd James, Nat Jarvis, Ross Stearn, Zac Smith, Cameron Evans, Callum Dolman, Lee Lucas.
SUBSTITUTES: Nick McCootie, Rabby Tabu Minzamba, Marcus Day, Dave Sims-Burgess, Dylan Morgan.
DARTFORD: Mitchell Beeney, Jordan Wynter, Tyrell Miller-Rodney, Baris Altintop, Luke Coulson (c), Paul Rooney, Maxwell Statham, James Golding, Joash Nembhard, Harvey Bradbury, Moussa Diarra.
SUBSTITUTES: George Whitefield, Archie Woods, Charlie Sheringham, Ollie Box, Tom Wray.
Referee: Callum Fisk (Stratford upon Avon)
Assists; Colin Hubbard (Wimborne), Matthew Jackson (Nuneaton).
Match report: Chris Palmer
(c) SportShotz Photography