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Dartford caretaker manager Tony Burman calls for unity if club are to avoid relegation from National League South

Caretaker manager Tony Burman has warned everyone at Dartford needs to stick together if the club are to avoid being relegated.

The Darts are yet to win a league game in 2024 and failed to score for the third time in four matches during Tuesday’s home defeat to Chippenham.

Dartford will go to Dover this weekend without Tyrell Miller-Rodney, who is suspended. Picture: Keith Gillard
Dartford will go to Dover this weekend without Tyrell Miller-Rodney, who is suspended. Picture: Keith Gillard

There’s more than a few nervous faces and the current predicament looks likely to speed up the need to appoint a permanent boss.

But Burman, who is still a club director, insists now isn’t the time to start pointing fingers.

“There’s no point losing your head or rag, having a go at everybody within the club,” he said.

“Unfortunately, we’re in a position where we’ve got to have everyone sticking together.

“I know people might want to criticise what we’ve done or haven’t done, but now isn’t the time to do it. The time to do it is when we know what’s happened.

“We’re in a position which we’ve brought on ourselves, make no mistake about it, whether that’s on the playing field or off it. We seriously need to do something about it.

“It takes everyone trying to stick together. It takes a lot of belief, if we can instill that then it will bring confidence. We’ve got to try and win the next game, and then win the one after that.

“If I’m honest with anybody I’m part of the board and I am a director. We must have got some things wrong somewhere and that’s what disappoints me, that we haven’t got certain things right and we’ve got to look at ourselves.

“Whatever the reasons, it’s so disappointing to see us where we are at this moment in time.

“If we get a new manager in next week it doesn’t mean it’s going to change things straight away but, having said that, there is that buzz if there is a new manager and it might change a couple of games.

“At this moment in time, I haven’t had the buzz that people thought I would have. I’ve lost four games.”

Burman conceded that any new manager has to realise that they might have to work through some tough times at Princes Park before things turn around.

“The new manager has to have a good pedigree,” he added. “There are some excellent people who have applied for the job.

“He might have to take a step back to take two steps forward. I really hope that doesn’t happen.

“We’re in a little bit of trouble, if we get pulled into the relegation fight and a new manager comes in and it doesn’t work for him, he’s got to understand that, dare I say it, we do go down. But I’d rather stay up and be fighting again next year to try and get into the National League.”

Dartford travel to bottom side Dover this Saturday knowing three points will put a different perspective on their survival chances.

Sam Odaudu (groin) and Tommy Block (hamstring) are both unlikely to feature while Tyrell Miller-Rodney is suspended.

But Burman doesn’t see the stakes are any bigger than in other matches at the moment.

“Every game is must-win,” he stated. “I don’t see that Saturday is any different from Tuesday and we’ve got to get points on the board. It’s as straight-forward as that.

“They’re in a position that Dover don’t expect to be in and over the years we’ve had some brilliant battles. We’re out of the bottom four at the moment but if we don’t start winning then we’re going to creep into it.

“We’ve got to start believing in ourselves. We picked up another two injuries on Tuesday and I doubt they’ll be ready so that makes things it even tougher.”

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