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Dartford manager Alan Dowson on when French Barnet loanee defender Moussa Diarra will get his chance and looking at even more loan options

A familiar face has joined Alan Dowson at Dartford - and the manager hasn’t ruled out bolstering his ranks even further in the near future.

French defender Moussa Diarra has reunited with Dowson at Princes Park on loan from National League Barnet initially until January. The pair worked together at Hampton & Richmond and Woking.

Dartford manager Alan Dowson. Picture: Keith Gillard
Dartford manager Alan Dowson. Picture: Keith Gillard

Dowson could move to add additional firepower, though, with young players at Football League clubs potentially available on loan soon.

“I’m going to see an under-23s game now,” revealed Dowson on Tuesday.

“If we can get another 10 or 20% by wheeling and dealing, that’s what we will do.

“I don’t think we were quite right in pre-season or at the start of the season. I have always believed that.

“We’re starting to get better now - but we’re not quite right.”

Positive steps made by Darts

Diarra, 33, brings spades of experience but has been made to wait for his debut.

“He will play - whether it’s this Saturday or Tuesday,” said Dowson.

“It has put pressure on the centre-backs but we could go three at the back and put [Luke] Coulson inside.

“I’ve not signed a centre-back to put him on the bench but, at the minute, it’s about how we bring him in.”

There’s plenty of competition for places. Fit-again Luke Allen and defender Maxwell Statham were on the bench against Dover - the latter a half-time substitute - while Academy graduate midfielder Olly Box was introduced late in the game.

Dowson said: “Luke Allen is back fit. Maxwell, usually, when he’s fit, he gets into the team.

“Wally [Alex Wall] is another week away. Charlie Sheringham had to go away on a school trip so that’s why he was missing on Monday.

“Young Olly Box made his debut on Monday. We have George Whitefield as well - but we’re going to need the squad.

“Brandon Barzey will be back on Tuesday.”

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