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Reaction from Dartford FC boss Tony Burman to the defeat at Hungerford Town

By Steve Tervet

Ludicrous - that's how Tony Burman described some of Dartford's play on Good Friday.

On a day when victory would have clinched a National League South play-off spot, Darts were right in the game at half-time with the scoresheet blank.

But within 20 seconds of the restart Burman's men had fallen behind and they never recovered as Hungerford won 2-0 to keep their own slim promotion hopes alive.

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Dartford manager Tony Burman. Picture: Andy Payton

Burman said: "In the first half we did really well because we’ve come to a place where the pitch is absolutely dreadful. You just had to kick it as long as you can, like they did and how both teams played on it, I don’t know.

"We did ever so well in the first half and I thought we were looking all right.

"To concede a goal after 30 seconds is just ludicrous, especially when you’ve just come out of the changing-room and you’ve said how well they’ve been doing. To concede a goal after 30 seconds puts you under more pressure.

"Once that happened, I felt the excuses came out a little bit and we started to concentrate on moaning at officials and not concentrating on the right things. We were a goal down and we should have concentrated on getting a goal back but it didn’t quite happen."

Four Dartford players ended up in referee Alan Dale's notebook at Bulpit Lane.

Tom Bonner was the first, penalised for a shove in the back and then cautioned for an angry display of dissent towards the official.

Burman said: "If players can have an excuse, they’ll find one. You’ve got to get on with it.

"Tom Bonner, just before the interval, has blatantly fouled the guy and he’s got booked for verbals for thinking that he hasn’t fouled him. I can’t understand it.

"That set the tone for the second half. It puts him under pressure, he can’t make a tackle and he made a couple in the second half which worried us and we were going to bring him off.

"(To concede) 30 seconds after coming out, that’s just a lack of concentration and not being ready and I’m really disappointed with that.

"In the second half we concentrated more on the wrong things rather than doing the right things. We got beat and deserved to get beat on the second half performance."

Dartford face Hampton & Richmond at Princes Park on Easter Monday, knowing a fifth straight home win would finally guarantee them a play-off berth.

Striker Duane Ofori-Acheampong should feature despite tweaking his knee during the warm-up at Hungerford although defender Keaton Wood (ankle) remains doubtful.

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