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On-loan Charlton Athletic midfielder Richard Chin is thriving again after returning to Dartford - and scoring first senior goal

On-loan Charlton midfielder Richard Chin is happy to be back playing again after a tough start to the season.

The 21-year-old rejoined Dartford from League 1 Charlton last week and marked his return with a first senior goal in the 3-0 win over Torquay in National League South on Saturday.

Chin was part of manager Alan Dowson’s squad that reached the play-offs at the end of last season, and he’s delighted to be back at Princes Park.

“It’s really nice to be back, there’s a few familiar faces and a few new ones as well,” said Chin.

“Everyone was really welcoming and it’s good to be back with Dowse, who believes in me.

“The fact I haven’t really played much meant I wanted to go somewhere that I knew I’d play, and if given the chance I can take it. Playing is the most important thing for me at the moment.

“It’s great to be in a place where people support you and have your back, then you can go out and perform. I need to play games and focus on what I need to do, everything else should take care of itself.”

Chin’s stop-start season has certainly been more stop than start. He was injured during Charlton’s pre-season tour and lasted just 14 minutes in a Carabao Cup tie defeat at Newport in August.

He featured again for the Addicks in a 4-3 EFL Trophy loss to Crawley in September but was replaced at half-time through injury.

That bad luck hasn’t dampened his spirits and Chin is looking positively towards the rest of the season.

“It’s been very disjointed,” he reflected. “We went away to Marbella in pre-season and I got injured against Leyton Orient. I came back, played in the Carabao Cup and got injured. Then I played 45 minutes in a Trophy game and got injured again.

“The third time my knee got stuck in the grass doing a tackle on a poor pitch. I’m back now, which is the main thing, and I’m just looking forward to having a good season.

“The fact I’ve been injured means I’ve struggled to get into the first team and Charlton signed more players in the summer. That’s part of football but it’s good to get back playing, get some consistency and see how the season goes.

“You can’t get too upset with the lows. Saturday was a good day for me but you can’t get too excited, treat them both exactly the same.

“Having an even keel is important, not getting too happy when you have a good day and not getting too sad when you’re struggling. It’s just part of having a professional career.”

Richard Chin, in action during last season’s National League South Play-off Semi-Final, is back at Dartford. Picture: Keith Gillard
Richard Chin, in action during last season’s National League South Play-off Semi-Final, is back at Dartford. Picture: Keith Gillard

Chin is no stranger to life at Princes Park having impressed at the end of last season. He insisted he felt the play-off pain as much as his team-mates.

“Of course,” stated Chin. “The boys did so well during the season, so to lose the game in the manner we did on penalties after having chances in the game was tough.

“But it gives me more motivation for this year and it’s one of the reasons that makes me hungrier when I’m playing for Dartford. I want to give everything and make sure we get promoted this year.”

And on his first senior goal: “I just came inside and took my time. I’ve been practising my left-foot crossing but not really my finishing. I just thought I’d try and curl it in, to be honest. It couldn’t have gone any better - it was a good goal!

“Hopefully I can build on that and get more goals in the month that I am here.”

Charlton followers might be interested to see Chin being utilised further forward by Dartford.

He’s predominantly been playing deeper for the Addicks but he’s enjoying the extra attacking freedom afforded to him by Darts boss Dowson.

“At Charlton I’ve been playing more at full-back and with the previous manager we used five at the back a lot so I was at wing-back,” said Chin.

“Growing up in the academy I played central midfield but I’ve moved around a lot in the last three or four years.

“I really enjoy playing right-midfield here in a 4-4-2. It lets me express myself and show some of my talents going forward, as well as the defensive side, so I’m really happy in this position and system.

“I think it’s probably the best position for me in a 4-4-2.”

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