Vanarama National League
North Ferriby United v Dagenham & Redbridge
Saturday 7 January 2017
Kick-off: 3.00 pm
Ferriby play their first home fixture of 2017 on Saturday when they entertain Dagenham & Redbridge at The Eon Visual Media Stadium. The Villagers will be looking to build on the New Year’s Day victory at York which lifted them off the bottom of the table.
Ferriby will be hoping for a good crowd as they bid to climb out of the bottom four. The Villagers have now won four of their last seven games and the clean sheet at York was the sixth of the season.
Dagenham will provide a stiff test. They are currently fourth in the table and have a very good away record. They have lost only one of their 13 away fixtures, winning four and drawing eight. They are well-organised away from home and will be difficult to break down.
The relative positions of the two sides shows the importance of scoring goals. The Villagers have conceded 38 goals to Dagenham’s 38. It is the two clubs’ scoring records that mark the difference between them with Ferriby scoring just 14 to Dagenham’s 43.
A win for Ferriby on Saturday could see them move out of the bottom four and that would b an achievement in itself. Being involved in a relegation battle may not seem to be much of a success but the season has been one that The Villagers can feel some pride.
When Steve Housham and Darryn Stamp took over the management role shortly before the start of the season the bulk of last season’s promotion winning side had gone and they had virtually no players signed-on.
The fact that they were able to assemble a squad that has been competitive in most games shows their managerial skills. It also is a compliment to the players who are, on the whole, young and inexperienced to be competing at this level. One only has to look at how York, a League Two side last season, are struggling to realise that Ferriby are far from disgraced.
Ferriby certainly deserved the win at York on New Year’s day. They were the better team on the day and could have had a few more goals. Reece Thompson was delighted to score against his former club. He commented,
“I always like to score goals wherever they are but to come back and score today was special.”
Thompson took a fair bit of “stick” from the York fans and the goal was the best way of responding to it.
Prior to the game, Assistant Manager Darryn Stamp had said that Ferriby needed a good start to get the York fans on their players’ backs. Ferriby’s performance certainly frustrated both York’s fans and the players. York were forced into hurried passes and long balls, especially in the last 20 minutes which were punctuated by niggling fouls from The Minstermen.
Manager Steve Housham commented afterwards,
“The performance was up there with best of the season. We came with a game plan and everybody stuck to it. Nobody let themselves down. We owed ourselves and the fans a performance after Boxing Day. We are delighted to come away with three points.
“We are off the bottom of the table and that is good for the confidence of everybody at the club.”
Oliver Hawkins will provide the major threat up-front for Dagenham and he is supported in the goal-scoring stakes by Corey Whiteley and Jordan Maguire-Drew. They will certainly give the Ferriby defence a stiff examination.
Looking towards the Dagenham game, Housham was his usual measured self,
“It’s important to build on the York result Dagenham on Saturday but that is going to be a difficult game. They have one of the best away records in the division and will come with a system designed to get a result.
“They deserved their win at Dagenham in September. We gave a good account of ourselves but we have learned a lot since then. We will work out our game plan at training this week and, hopefully, we can gain something from the game.”
With the exception of Simon Russell and Steve Brogan , Housham should have his full squad to choose from.
Ferriby from: Rory Watson, Sam Topliss, Ben Middleton, Jake Skelton, Mark Gray, Danny Emerton, Connor Oliver, Ryan Kendall, Taron Hare, Ryan Fallowfield, Darryn Stamp, Ross Armstrong, Curtis Bateson, Alfons Fosu-Mensah, Reece Thompson, Kyle Wootton, Levi Sutton