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Home Dartford Sport Article
A bumper crowd watched Dartford entertain Championship side Millwall on Tuesday night.
In their second pre-season friendly, the Darts were beaten by a Jermaine Easter strike, but they gave a good account of themselves against quality opposition.
The only trialist in Dartford's starting XI was former Braintree player Luke Daley, who lined up wide on the left-hand side.
Millwall had the first effort of note, Justin Hoyte rolling the ball inside for trialist Magaye Gueye, who thumped a left-footed drive narrowly wide. Matthew Briggs then beat two players wide on the Millwall left and shot just over.
Dartford boss Tony Burman wanted his players to work hard and they certainly did that, often chasing shadows as the Championship side knocked the ball around with authority.
One such passing move finished with Gueye curling another good effort over Jason Brown's crossbar.
There was a nervous moment for the men in white shirts when centre-half Rory McAuley diverted the ball towards his own goal from close-range; the summer signing turning with some relief to see the ball safely in Brown's gloves.
The game was quickly turning into attack versus defence. Briggs tried his luck from the corner of the box and his shot clipped the outside of Brown's right-hand post.
Gueye, who spent four years at Everton, was the best player on the pitch in the first half. His first thought was always to drive towards goal but fortunately for Dartford, his next effort - although powerful - flew straight at Brown.
It took until the 38th minute for Dartford to threaten. A move started by Lee Noble deep in his own half finished with Daley's swerving shot flying over the crossbar as goalkeeper David Forde watched on.
Daley then turned the ball inside and Andy Pugh drilled a snapshot wide.
Shaun Williams pulled the trigger from 30 yards at the end of the first half but his shot was too high.
Millwall changed their whole team at half-time, with new signing Lee Gregory - who scored against Dartford for FC Halifax Town in Conference Premier last season - one of the 11 newcomers.
The Lions' new-look XI took a while to pick up the pace, allowing Dartford into the game, although Ed Upson did thump a low shot just past the base of the post.
And just after the hour mark, Ian Holloway's side were ahead. Carlos Edwards did well to cut the ball back from the byline and Easter's controlled volley snuck inside the near post.
There was no real tempo to the game after that, with Millwall content to keep possession and Burman ringing the changes for the home side.
McAuley and Max Cornhill were the only two players to complete the 90 minutes.
Dartford: Brown (Ibrahim 72mins), Burns (Vint 83mins), Mitchel-King (Anidugbe 72mins), McAuley, Green (Dembele 83mins), Hayes (Collier 46mins), Noble (Harris 46mins), Cornhill, Daley (Adekunle 68mins), T Bradbrook (Thompson 62mins), Pugh (Derry 62mins).
Millwall (first half): Forde, Hoyte (O'Brien 28mins), Robinson, Webster, Briggs, Abdou, Williams, Woolford, Chaplow, Gueye, Marquis.
Millwall (second half): Bywater, Edwards (Nelson 75mins), Dunne, Beevers, Malone, Bailey, Wright, Martin (Onyedinma 83mins), Upson (Powell 83mins), Easter, Gregory.
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