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Daggers’ Wilkinson frustrated by further away-day blues

Ryan Bowman of York City, who netted the opening goal and Daggers Luke Wilkinson. Pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO Ryan Bowman of York City, who netted the opening goal and Daggers Luke Wilkinson. Pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO

Monday, January 6, 2014
9:00 AM

Dagenham & Redbridge’s frailty at the back away from home has to improve otherwise the play-offs are a right off, according to Luke Wilkinson.

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Frustratingly Wayne Burnett’s side have the best defensive record at home, but that bares no resemblance as they have had a torrid time on the road.

They have shipped 24 goals, the worst in the league and Wilkinson knows they have got to start reproducing their home defensive displays on their travels if they are to be successful.

“When you are away from home you have got to take your chances,” said Wilkinson.

“If you don’t, you get punished at any time unless you are solid at the back, which we have been at home and haven’t away. We need to be better.”

Their inability to convert their chances up the other end led to their downfall at York City as they wasted several good first half opportunities.

But they failed to get going in the second period and paid the ultimate the price.

“I think we had three or four clear cut chances in the first half which we haven’t made the most of and in the second half we started sloppy,” he added.

“That’s been the story of the season though and we can’t let that continue.”

The central defender came off the bench and played in a defensive midfield role in the 1-0 win over AFC Wimbledon on New Year’s Day, and started in the same position at York.

It’s a position he played as a youngster, and while admitting he’d love to get back in his favoured position, he is happy to do a job for the team for however long is required.

“When I was younger I used to play central midfield but that was quite a while ago and now I am a centre back first and foremost,” he remarked.

“It’s nice just to be playing again, that’s primarily what I want to be doing. Everyone knows it isn’t my main or normal position but I am just enjoying being back in the team and if I am needed to play there then I will.”

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