Woking fall to early Dagenham & Redbridge triple

Haydn Cobb
12:00am, Sat 20th Aug 2016
Woking 1 Dagenham & Redbridge 3
20th August 2016
Vanarama National League

A brave Woking fightback couldn’t rescue the points against Dagenham and Redbridge after the away side sprinted to a three-goal lead inside the first 20 minutes but the Cards restored some pride to the scoreline with Anthony Edgar’s second half strike.

In a fixture which always looked tricky on paper for the Cards, Dagenham and Redbridge demonstrated the former Football League status and quality with three goals in the space of eight minutes at Kingfield to effectively take the game away from Woking despite the two sides being evenly matched for the remainder of the game.

Craig Robson opened the scoring in the 11th minute with a deft header before Jordan Maguire-Drew found the net with a sublime curling effort shortly afterwards. Woking’s task was made even harder when the away side were given a penalty and despite Michael Poke saving the initial shot by Fejiri Okenabirhe the ball found its way back to the striker who slotted home in the rebound scrap.

Woking slowed the tide to get to half time only three goals down and were given hope two minutes into the second half thanks to Edgar’s low drive but despite continued pressure the Daggers held out to take victory.

The result leaves Woking still without a win this season and second from bottom, only ahead of Guiseley who have lost all of their five opening league matches.

After a spirited but ultimately fruitless match against Forest Green, manager Garry Hill rang in four changes to shake up the attack with Dennon Lewis, Zak Ansah, Chigozie Ugwu and Fabio Saraiva all dropping to the bench.

Charlie Penny, leading the line in the lone striker role, had the opening chance of the first half when he latched on to a low Charlier Carter cross from the right wing but his poke goalwards narrowly skipped past the far post.

Despite a promising start it was the visiting side who took the lead in the 11th minute with Robson heading in a free header at the far post with Michael Poke left flat-footed.

Things went from bad to worse shortly after when Brighton & Hove loanee Maguire-Drew cut inside from the right and curled in a left-footed effort which escaped Poke’s outstretched arm.

Woking’s difficult start continue just two minutes later when Ben Gordon took down Maguire-Drew which gave the referee no option but to point to the penalty spot. Okenabirhe’s initial effort was well-saved by Poke diving down to the bottom right corner but the loose ball was collected by Luke Guttridge who teed up the penalty taker to calmly slot past sprawling Woking defenders.

Stemming the Daggers’ tide, Woking battled back approaching half time and the home side’s best effort saw Max Kretzschmar hit the post with a well-struck effort from the edge of the penalty box.

Half-time: Woking 0 Dagenham & Redbridge 3

The Woking boss looked to add some firepower to the attack with little to lose in the second half with Gordon coming off for Saravia who joined the midfield to push Kretzschmar further forward. The change made an instant impact with the Cards grabbing a goal back inside two minutes.

A cross failed to be cleared by the Dagenham and Redbridge backline and the ball was shifted to Edgar on the edge of the area. The tricky winger carved out some space by evading two defenders and his low drive blasted past Elliot Justham to give the home side a lifeline with his first goal for the club.

The goal seemed to breathe energy back into Woking, while similarly dampen the recent Football League exiles, with the home side finding a passing rhythm and duly creating chances. Keiran Murtagh saw a low shot blocked out by Justham before substitute Saraiva had a shot which also tested the goalkeeper.

Woking continued to apply the pressure but left room at the back which enabled the Daggers to play on the counter attack. Hill added height and power into the attack with Ugwu and Ansah in the hunt for two late goals.

The fresh pair provided sparks to keep the hopes up of a Woking revival, but Dagenham and Redbridge were able to snuff out any good chances to take home the three points while leaving the Cards still without a win this season.

Woking: Michael Poke; Jake Caprice, Joey Jones, Brain Saah, Ben Gordon (Fabio Saravia 45); Charlie Carter (Zak Ansah 81), Keiran Murtagh, Anthony Edgar, Nathan Ralph; Charlie Penny, Max Kretzschmar (Gozie Ugwu 73)

Unused subs: Brandon Hall, Dennon Lewis

Goals: Edgar (47)

Dagenham & Redbridge: Elliot Justham; Joe Widdowson, Craig Robson, Scott Doe, Curtley Williams; Matt Robinson, Paul Benson, Jordan Maguire-Drew (Corey Whitely 72); Andre Boucaud, Luke Guttridge (Josh Staunton 78), Fejiri Okenabirhe

Unused subs: Mark Cousins, Frankie Raymond, Christian Assombalonga

Goals: Robson (11), Maguire-Drew (17), Okenabirhe (19)

Referee: Adam Bromley

Sponsors’ MOTM: Anthony Edgar – Got the goal to give Woking hope and was a threat all match.

Attendance: 1153

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