Match Preview: Dagenham & Redbridge – Chesterfield
By Gergo Varga
Dagenham & Redbridge host high-flying Chesterfield on Saturday in the Vanarama National League, with kick off at 3pm at the Chigwell Construction Stadium.
The Daggers come into the fixture on the back of a 1-0 loss suffered away at Halifax Town on Tuesday. Having lost four of their last five league games, Daryl McMahon’s man are desperate for a positive result to keep them in one of the play-off positions. They currently find themselves in 7th place after 13 games played.
Opponents Chesterfield are promising to be a tough nut to crack. They’re in fine form, having won three in a row, beating Eastleigh at home 1-0 on Tuesday night in their last league fixture. The Spireites are now being considered as one of the favourites for the title this season. The side’s away form is excellent, with only one defeat from their last eight games on the road.
Dagenham’s home form is also very promising, having lost just one of their last eleven matches at Victoria Road. However, their form against Chesterfield is worrying. The Daggers have lost and drawn four games respectfully of their eight previous meetings. Their last win was all the way back in 2012 against Saturday’s opponents.
The East London outfit’s defenders will have to keep a close eye on Chesterfield’s Kabongo Tshimanga. The striker netted his 11th goal of the season in the last round, making him the outright leading marksman in the National League. The Spireites main man is high on confidence, having scored at least 19 goals for the last three seasons running.
Paul McCalum is Dagenham’s highest scorer this season with 6 goals. Unfortunately, the home side will not be able to count on his services due to suspension. Former Barnet forward Josh Walker could be back in contention for Saturday. Daryl McMahon said the following when he was asked about the players fitness: “Josh got injured on Tuesday in training with a groin injury, it’s nothing major, he trained but it was not worth the risk as we’d been without him for a long time. Hopefully he’ll be back.”
First team coach Dave Jupp is expecting a difficult game for the Dagger’s on Saturday, coming up against a side “with arguably one the deepest strength squads in the league.”
Chesterfield manager James Rowe celebrated his 50th game in charge with a victory against Eastleigh. The gaffer is expecting a very technical game on Saturday afternoon. “Both teams are going to go for the jugular, I’m sure. They’re a very positive minded team, but so are we.”
The away side’s skipper Gavin Gunning was forced off against Eastleigh and Rowe gave an update on his fitness. “Gavin has fractured his nose; he’s fractured his eye socket and he’s got a laceration on his face. We’re waiting to see if he needs an operation or not. He’s not available tomorrow.”
All in all, everything is set up for Saturday’s fixture to be an exciting clash with a lot on the cards for both sides.