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Dartford FC boss Tony Burman pleased to keep three clean sheets in four games

By Steve Tervet

Dartford boss Tony Burman has stressed the importance of keeping clean sheets.

The Darts picked up their third clean sheet in four National League South games to defeat Concord 2-0 on Tuesday night.

And, despite having the third best defensive record behind the two promoted teams last season, Burman insisted that they need to stop giving away soft goals.

Dartford manager Tony Burman Picture: Andy Payton
Dartford manager Tony Burman Picture: Andy Payton

"I felt there were a lot of goals when I looked back that we conceded because people weren’t doing their jobs or we didn’t get organised once we’d lost possession,” said the manager.

"There were a lot of goals we should have stopped. It’s an area we’ve got to make better.

"We’ve been defending well and are organised defensively and long may that continue because it means a lot when we don’t concede a lot of goals.

"We will get better at creating more chances. They haven’t all gone in at the moment but they will do. What I don’t want is for it to happen and then we’re making mistakes at the back.

"We’ve got a long way to go but it was nice that we got that first win."

Dartford’s injury crisis showed no sign of easing on Tuesday night with Tom Murphy (ankle/hamstring) ruled out from the injury picked up when he scored at Braintree the previous midweek, made worse by featuring in the goalless draw at Havant on Saturday.

Defender Keaton Wood (Achilles) was named on the bench as an emergency measure while striker Andy Pugh could return at home to Oxford City this Saturday if he comes through a full training session tonight (Thursday) without any reaction.

With Duane Ofori-Acheampong still sidelined, Burman boosted his forward line with the signing of former loan striker Alfie Pavey, who had joined Welling in the summer.

League rules mean he is not available until this Saturday but Burman was pleased to capture a player he wanted to bring to Princes Park in the close season.

He said: "I wanted Alfie involved in the squad against Concord but because he had to be signed with someone for 14 days, we couldn’t play him.

"He is someone I wanted to sign in the summer but it didn’t quite come off.

"I hope we get a reaction from him and I’m sure we will. I just want him to listen to us, don’t listen to other people. Sometimes we’ll upset you by leaving you out and sometimes you’ll be playing but get on with your job and do the best you can."

Despite three draws in four games, Darts are one of five teams in the division still unbeaten.

That record will be put to the test when they host Oxford City at Princes Park this weekend.

Burman added: "Circumstances beyond our control have got in the way (so far) but you have to put up with that.

"We know we’ve got a small squad but whatever team we put out, we should all support it.

"It’s easy to criticise, say we haven’t got a striker or we should bring someone in but we know what we’ve been doing.

"We’ve been close to scoring a lot of goals and people have to realise that."

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