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League Two: Dagenham & Redbridge 0 Hartlepool United 2

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Goals from Luke Williams and Andy Monkhouse ensured the Daggers slipped to their fourth home loss of the season against Hartlepool United.

The hosts had the clearer cut chances in the first half, but an inability to find the back of the net proved costly as Williams’ deflected effort put the Pools in front, before Monkhouse sealed it with a minute remaining.

Daggers boss Wayne Burnett opted to keep faith with the same side which won 1-0 at Rochdale last weekend, though there was a space on the bench for new loan signing Ade Azeez, who joined from Charlton Athletic earlier in the day.

It was a slow start, though the hosts spent most of it on the front foot and it was the hosts who the first real chance.

The promising Jack Connors played the ball down the line for Zavon Hines, who exchanged a neat one-two with Luke Norris.

Hines cut the ball in from the by-line back to an onrushing Medy Elito, but he fired it wide.

That seemed to get the game going and Luke James was guilty of missing a good chance for Colin Cooper’s side when finding space to turn and shoot in the box but his effort was agonisingly wide of the target.

The Daggers were playing some nice football on the attack, and Murphy forced Pools goalkeeper Scott Flinders to push the ball behind for a corner with a 20-yard shot.

And from the resulting set piece it was another well-worked move to Lawson D’Ath, however his fierce shot was blocked by Jordan Richards.

It was all Daggers, but they were failing to turn their chances into goals.

They went the closest of all when Hines floated in a right-wing free-kick to the back post where Luke Wilkinson rose, but his header came back off the bar.

The rebound fell kindly to Norris, but the striker hadn’t anticipated the ball landing at his feet and he tapped it agonisingly wide.

There were no changes for either side at the start of the second half, but Daggers were on the back foot early on as a throughball to former West Ham player Marlon Harewood saw him advance on goal.

He shrugged off the attentions of Connors, but Wilkinson was there with a fine block to deny the veteran forward.

Murphy thought he had given the Daggers the lead on 62 minutes when he shrugged off Christian Burgess, before firing low past Flinders, but the referee pulled back play for an adjudged foul on the Pools defender.

Chances were not as easy to come by as the first but in fortunate circumstances the visitors picked up a priceless opener on 68 minutes.

The ball found its way to Luke Williams 25 yards from goal and the on loan Middlesborough midfielder tried his luck and his shot took a wicked deflection over Lewington and into the back of the net.

Hines again went close for the Daggers as the ball found him unmarked in the box but his shot was well saved by Flinders.

Burnett opted to give Azeez his debut with 15 minutes to go, and also brought on Chris Dickson for Murphy and Norris respectively.

But that did little to inspire them in the latter stages, as they seemed to run out of ideas going forward, while the Pools were content with their slender advantage.

And their day was summed up when three minutes from time when Hines drifted in off the right and fired high over the bar.

Daggers went three at the back in a late push to get a point, but that was there undoing when a ball in from the right by Jonathan Franks was directed back across by James to Monkhouse who forced the effort home from close range, despite the attempts of Scott Doe on the line.

Daggers: Lewington, Hoyte, Doe, Wilkinson, Connors (Shields 83), Ogogo, Elito, D’Ath, Norris (Dickson 75), Murphy (Azeez 75), Hines.

Unused substitutes: Seabright, Ilesanmi, Saah, Bingham.

Hartlepool United: Flinders, Richards, Collins, Burgess, Holden, Walton, Walker, Williams, Monkhouse, Harewood (Franks 71), James.

Unused substitutes: Rafferty, Poole, Barmby, Compton, Sweeney, Rodney.

Attendance: 3,357 (196 Hartlepool United fans)

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