Match report posted by Richard (view the full thread on the forum )
I don't really know why I was looking forward to going to Dagenham - we never seem to perform when we visit the old non-league clubs for the first time... During the match I was recalling games at Barnet, Boston, Macclesfield, Kidderminster, Rushden, Cheltenham - now we can add Dagenham to that long list of failure.
Just as we took our seats for the game, Swindon took the lead with the first attack of the game. A cross was swung in from the left, and Dossevi rose to head the ball from what looked like a considerable distance, into the far top corner of the goal. It was the perfect start, we had it timed at 43 seconds.
But that was as long as it lasted. The rest of the half was really scrappy - and we rarely saw any fluid football, the conditions and the bobbly pitch not helping matters. Dagenham created the best opportunity of the half - another cross that we failed to deal with, Bas Savage met it with a powerful header, which Lucas did excellently to parry from point blank range... The backspin on the ball diverting it thankfully wide, when for a moment we thought it might go in. The Daggers' other efforts were mostly woeful attempts from outside the area, though our defending looked slack on a number of occasions, and Lucas was forced to charge down an attacker to prevent another goalscoring opportunity.
When we did get it on the deck, we looked like the better side, but we were not turning our possession into any meaningful chances - mostly due to poor final balls, and the midfield not linking with the attack well enough.
Things didn't improve in the second half - in fact, they took a huge turn for the worse in the opening minutes, when Dagenham equalised. It was a shocking goal to concede - Cuthbert misjudging a long ball forward and allowing it to bounce over him, the ball was sprayed out to the left to Scannell, who, with only Amankwaah there to stop him getting a shot it, curled the ball low past Lucas.
Dagenham continued to have the better of the play - and we were frustrating all over the pitch - whacking long balls forward to Pericard who wasn't winning anything, or playing them to Dossevi who seemed to spend the entire half in an offside position, just like on Tuesday. At this rate, he's already challenging Steve White's offside record. On the left side, again I'm afraid to say that Ball looked completely out of position - it's surely time to give him a chance up top because the current front two just aren't doing it.
The Daggers had a great chance to take the lead, a ball slipped behind the defence left a striker one-on-one with Lucas, who did superbly well to divert wide. Minutes later though, they got the goal they deserved, and again it was awful from a Town point of view - another ball in the box was allowed to bounce, Bas Savage took it, and with his back to goal I'm assuming he swivelled and shot in - there were too many bodies in the way to see.
The goal finally woke the Town up - but with only ten minutes left on the clock it was far too late. Two chances fell to McGovern - one caught easily, the other forcing a superb save from the veteran Roberts - who celebrated his save in front of the Town fans. He'd been getting the now normal goalkeeper stick for the whole second half, so he had every right to give some back - fair play - and quite why some took exception to this, I don't know. If you can't take it, don't dish it out.
Pericard had another headed effort that didn't trouble the keeper before we ran out of time - had we played the whole game like we had the last ten minutes, we likely would have won the game - interestingly, it was also the only point when we had all of our players in their usual positions - McGovern on the right side, O'Brien on the left, Douglas and Ferry in the centre of midfield.
Not good enough.