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Dartford FC boss Tony Burman says Ronnie Vint must take his chance when he gets it

By Steve Tervet

Tony Burman admits keeping his fringe players happy is going to be a challenge now Dartford have cleared their injury list.

The manager had every outfield player available for the first time this season when Bognor Regis visited Princes Park on Saturday.

Ronnie Vint didn’t even make the bench, the centre-half having been unable to force his way back into the team since injuring his ankle on the opening day of the season.

Ronnie Vint (right) injured his ankle on the opening day of the season Picture: Andy Payton
Ronnie Vint (right) injured his ankle on the opening day of the season Picture: Andy Payton

He played at Weston-super-Mare when Richard Sho-Silva was unavailable but failed to keep the shirt.

"I’m delighted we’ve got a full squad," Burman said. "It’s competition for places.

"Ronnie Vint didn’t make the 16 on Saturday, which is a bit of a statement and he’s had to accept what we’ve done.

"If we were away, he probably would have been on the bench and it would have been someone else (left out) but there’s competition for places and when it comes to your turn, you take it.

"It would be nice to keep the squad together, which I’m hoping to do but at the same time you have to realise players want to play and it’s the way you handle that situation.

"I want people to be happy here – not happy because they’re on the bench but because they know they get treated in the right manner.

"I want Ronnie in my XI. He’s a good player but it just hasn’t quite worked out for him. When he gets his chance, he’s got to take it with both hands."

Dartford boss Tony Burman Picture: John Westhrop
Dartford boss Tony Burman Picture: John Westhrop

Those out of favour will sometimes consider moving on to get games elsewhere.

Burman said: "Players think like that and their advisors are straight away on the phone to them saying ‘you can do this and do that’. We’ve not had too much of that but you know it happens.

"I’ve got to keep as many people as I can happy and if they want to be successful and they’ve got ambition, they stay here in respect of the level they’re being offered.

"I think my group are good and I’m hoping they listen to me and get stronger."

Dartford travel to Burgess Hill on Saturday in the FA Cup fourth qualifying round.

They’ll bank £12,500 in prize money if they can beat the Bostik Premier side, with League 1 and 2 clubs waiting in the first round draw.

Burman said: "It’s a potential banana skin. I saw Burgess Hill beat Kingstonian last Tuesday and they’re a decent outfit.

"But on the day it doesn’t matter what league you’re in if your attitude and your preparation’s right."

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