Wasted Opportunity

A bizarre goalkeeping incident caused controversy as Dagenham & Redbridge suffered defeat against Maidstone on Tuesday night. Jack Cronin reports.

An early goal from Joe Pigott was the starting point for a night of disappointment for the Daggers. Despite the Stones going down to 10 men with five minutes left of the match, Delano Sam-Yorke scored the second for the visitors to end hopes of a Daggers’ come-back.

There were a couple of changes to the side that beat Bromley. Keeper Elliot Justham was replaced by second-choice Mark Cousins and Jake Howell made way for captain Scott Doe.

Maidstone applied pressure early on, and the energetic start paid dividends. The Daggers failed to clear the ball, and forward Pigott hit a thunderous half-volley from long range to make it 1-0 with six minutes played.

The home side were on the back foot for large parts of the first half, as Maidstone attacked with a high tempo. The east Londoners did create some chances, however, with Jordan Maguire-Drew finding space to run down the left-hand side.

Oliver Hawkins was agonisingly close to drawing the teams level, with Maidstone keeper Lee Worgan rooted to his spot as the ball zipped past the post.

The game opened up after the break with some exciting end-to-end play, but the Stones continued to enjoy the better of the chances.


Mayhem ensued in the 70th minute when a Cousins’ goal-kick deflected off the back of Pigott at close range. The ball looped into the air and onto the feet of the striker, who slotted into an open net.

There was a huge protest from the Daggers and after some deliberation between the officials, the goal was disallowed, much to the dismay of Maidstone.

Soon after, Bobby-Joe Taylor clipped the bar with a powerful free-kick as the away side looked to finish the game.

The visitors were down to 10men after Stuart Lewis was given a second yellow card for a poor tackle.

Nevertheless, that didn’t affect Jay Saunders’ side, as in the 85th minute, Sam-Yorke struck home a second in the closing stages to secure all three points.


Speaking to the Dagenham & Redbridge website, manager John Still remained positive: “This is football, there will be highs and lows. I’ve been in this game for 40 years and you can’t be affected by one game.

“You’ve got to be affected by a season and the season has told us up to this point we are second in the league which is unbelievable to what we would have hoped at the beginning of the season.”

The next game for Dagenham & Redbridge is an away fixture against Gateshead FC on the 4th March.

Daggers: Cousins, Widdowson, Doe, Robson (Ling 71′), Raymond, Okenabirhie, Hawkins, Maguire-Drew (Grant 82′), Boucaud, Donnellan, Sheppard (Benson 46′)

Un-used subs: Justham, Staunton

Maidstone: Worgan, Mills, Coyle, Lokko, Lewis, Sam-Yorke, Paxman (McCarthy 87′), Prestedge, Twumasi, Loza (Taylor 65′), Pigott (Odubade 90+1′)

Un-used subs: Phipps, Okuonghae

Attendance: 1,456