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Dartford 0 Ebbsfleet United 0 match report

Both sides had claims to have edged a tight north Kent derby in National League South on Saturday.

Ebbsfleet had the better of the play while Dartford had three clear-cut chances, which saw two efforts cleared off the line.

Dartford keeper Craig King denies Fleet's Jack Paxman. Picture: Dave Budden (43794467)
Dartford keeper Craig King denies Fleet's Jack Paxman. Picture: Dave Budden (43794467)

Fleet were dealt an early blow when skipper Lee Martin hobbled off inside the first two minutes before being quickly replaced by James Dobson.

But it didn't seem to deter their attacking intent. Dennis Kutrieb's side seemed to get the ball forward much quicker than in recent weeks.

Bobby Joe-Taylor's surging run on six minutes saw him beat two Darts players before firing over from an angle, then Michael West headed over Ben Chapman's cross.

Fleet keeper Jordan Holmes was out smartly to thwart Chris Dickson but that was the only real time he was called into any significant action.

Dartford got into plenty of good positions but failed to deliver a telling cross or find a team-mate.

They had good appeals for a penalty turned down as Nassim L'Ghoul was needlessly barged over by Jack Paxman's challenge inside the area.

Paxman produced the best moment going forward for the Fleet at the other end but, having worked his way into the area, Darts keeper Craig King was out to block his shot.

Darts skipper Tom Bonner gave the ball away cheaply on the stroke of half-time but Rakish Bingham was unable to make him pay, with King gathering his long-range effort at the second attempt.

Fleet lost another player to injury early in the second half when defender Jake Goodman limped off, Chapman was moved into centre-back.

Bonner headed a Josh Payne corner against his own crossbar on the hour mark before West shot wildly over following a promising move involving Adam Mekki and Tobi Adeybayo-Rowling.

Darts had their first attempt on goal on 73 minutes. The ball fell for Dickson in the box and he got past keeper Holmes but his low shot was cleared off the line by Chapman.

Connor Essam then had a header from a free-kick cleared off the line by Taylor and at the other end King was called into action to deny Mekki from distance and then substitute Reece Grant's follow-up.

Dickson, who saw a late effort ruled out for offside, also got in the way of Bonner's goalbound effort as Darts started to get on top from set pieces late on.

Fleet were fortunate that Grant did not collect a red card in stoppage time when he left his foot in late as keeper King was out quickly to save at his feet, the leftovers from that challenge sparking unsavoury post-match scenes with King rushing some distance to clash with the Fleet striker.

Dartford: King, Wynter, Braham-Barrett, Ijaha (Barnum-Bobb 46mins), Essam, Bonner, L’Ghoul, Husin, Dickson, Barham (Romain 70mins), Berkeley-Agyepong. Subs not used: Hill, Marsh-Brown, Allen.

Ebbsfleet: Holmes, Adebayo-Rowling, Taylor, Kahraman, Goodman (Mekki 49mins), Payne, Paxman, Chapman, West (Grant 64mins), Martin (Dobson 4mins), Bingham. Subs not used: Hadler, Wood.

Referee: Richie Watkins.

Read more: The latest sports news in Kent

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