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Dartford 0 Chippenham Town 1 match report: Craig Fasanmade scores winner in National League South

Goalshy Dartford again failed to find the net as they lost at home to Chippenham on Tuesday night.

The Darts have lost all four National League South games under caretaker boss Tony Burman.

Dartford captain Luke Coulson. Picture: Keith Gillard
Dartford captain Luke Coulson. Picture: Keith Gillard

They had the better of the first half chances but lost their way after the break and Chippenham got the points after a clinical strike early in the second half.

It’s now just one win in the last 11 league games for the Darts, who will surely be looking nervously over their shoulder at the teams in the relegation zone.

Dartford made one change from the side beaten at Bath last weekend with Jack Smith replacing Tyrell Miller-Rodney in the starting line-up.

The kick-off was delayed by 15 minutes after Chippenham were caught up in traffic on the M25 but it was the visitors who actually settled quickest, although Craig Fasanmade dragged wide an early effort from an angle when he probably had more time than he realised.

Dartford skipper Luke Coulson had the first attempt on target but his low left-foot shot from 20 yards was never going to seriously trouble keeper Will Henry.

The home side then came to life, somehow failing to take the lead. Sam Odaudu won the ball near halfway and set up Coulson. His cross fell to Elliott Romain, whose goalbound shot was blocked by his own player. The follow-up was then kept out, the ball eventually landing in front of Alex Wall in the six-yard box where only a fantastic block by Freddie Grant denied him a certain goal.

Romain’s clever backheel at the near post was well saved by Henry before the unmarked Paul Rooney headed well over from Fumnaya Shomotun’s right-wing cross.

Chippenham somehow survived and looked to catch Dartford out on the break, the clever Matt McClure saw his shot blocked behind for a corner by the alert Joash Nembhard.

Tommy Block’s run of injuries in Dartford continued when he was forced off on the half-hour with Max Statham coming on at right-back.

Statham was immediately involved when McClure went down in the box under his challenge but referee Harrison Blair was unmoved.

It was a half that promised plenty for Dartford but they’re still yet to score a first-half goal since Tony Burman took caretaker charge last month.

A swift Dartford move saw Jack Smith set up Wall but he dragged his right-foot shot horribly wide early in the second half.

Chippenham went ahead with their first shot on goal after 52 minutes. Joash Nembhard tried to thread the ball through a gap that never existed and in one pass the visitors sent the speedy Craig Fasanmade clear and he never looked like missing, clipping his shot past keeper Billy Terrell.

It was nearly two on the hour mark when Odaudu was caught napping at a throw-in. Jake Evans’ pull back picked out Tom Mehew but his shot came crashing back off the crossbar.

Then Eddie Jones worked his way down the right but his cross was well cleared to deny Fasanmade a tap-in.

Once behind, it took Dartford until the 71st minute to register a shot on target but Henry was down smartly to keep out Coulson’s right-foot drive.

With 12 minutes left, Dartford lost left-back Odaudu to injury with Wynter having to fill in that role for the time that remained.

Dartford nearly levelled on 82 minutes when a lovely exchange ended with Coulson crossing for substitute Olly Box, whose near-post effort was brilliantly turned behind by Henry.

Dartford: Terrell, Wynter, Odaudu (Maloney 78mins), Block (Statham 30mins), Smith, Coulson, Wall (Box 62mins), Rooney, Romain, Shomotun, Nembhard. Subs not used: Wray, Adebowale.

Chippenham: Henry, Jones, Grant, Fasanmade, Amadi-Holloway (Hewlett 76mins), Evans (E Williams 75mins), McClure (Bradbury 65mins), Mehew, Ellison, N Williams, King. Subs not used: Owen-Evans, Spokes.

Referee: Harrison Blair.

Attendance: 719.

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