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Dartford manager Tony Burman troubled by atmosphere at Princes Park

By Matthew Panting

Tony Burman has admitted Dartford need to get their critics back on board.

The Darts manager voiced his concerns about the atmosphere around the club following their dismal 1-0 National League South defeat to Poole last Saturday.

The players were booed off at the final whistle – and Burman has felt the vibe around Princes Park has not been right for some time.

Dartford boss Tony Burman Picture: Andy Payton
Dartford boss Tony Burman Picture: Andy Payton

“The boos (at the end) show that it seems a strange place at the moment,” he said. “It’s been a real strange couple of months and there’s been lots of different things going on.

“It’s a strange atmosphere when we’ve been top of the league for a long time.

“I can’t put my finger on why we put in a performance like that. We’ve lost 1-0 at home and it was like a mid-table clash – and that’s wrong.

“The whole place should be buzzing and we have to turn that around.

“I can take playing like we did against Poole if we had won. If we had scored first, the buzz would have been there. We’ve got to excite the crowd.

“You take the credit when things are going well and you take the stick when it’s not. Whether it’s justified or not is irrelevant.

“People will always have their opinion. You can’t stop it, you have to get on and believe in what you’re doing. I still hope that we finish top of the league but we’re making it difficult for ourselves.”

Darts are keen to switch towards full-time training next season if they win promotion.

Skipper Elliot Bradbrook has already stated he’s likely to call time on his Princes Park career if they go up but Burman does not want anyone thinking about what could happen down the line.

He added: “It doesn’t matter what happens next year, what league you are in is irrelevant.

“We’re here now and want to win this league. We’ve been challenging all season for it and that was the blueprint."

Dartford get their first chance to put the record straight at home on Saturday when they host fifth-placed Hemel Hempstead.

“It’s a massive, tough game,” added Burman. “It’s no good sulking.

“We’ve got to get the supporters behind us and get the encouragement because we need it now. They’re down in the dumps and we’ve got to get going.

“It’s all to play for. I don’t want to come off and hope that other teams have lost.

“We can’t have games like we had on Saturday, especially at this time of year. We’ve only got ourselves to blame.”

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