Chester 0 Dagenham & Redbridge 4: Michael Cheek at the double as Daggers ease to comfortable success at Blues
PUBLISHED: 14:24 25 November 2017 | UPDATED: 14:28 25 November 2017
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Vanarama National League: Chester 0 Dagenham & Redbridge 3 (Ling 56, Howell 75, Cheek 79, 90)
Dagenham & Redbridge overcame a poor first half to earn just a second away win of the season, beating Chester 3-0 in the National League.
Daggers were second best for much of the opening period in Cheshire, though the Blues were unable to break down a resolute away defence.
After the interval, the Victoria Road outfit were well on top, with Sam Ling, Luke Howell and Michael Cheek, who struck twice, all on target.
For the third game in succession, Daggers boss John Still opted to name the same starting XI.
There was one change to the bench, though, with the fit-again Chike Kandi named in a matchday squad for the first time since September, replacing Joe White among the substitutes.
The Essex club almost fell behind in the third minute when Chester forward Nyal Bell turned Ling in the box, but curled his effort wide of the far post.
Two minutes later, a cross into the box by Daggers full back Jake Howells caused confusion in the Blues box.
However, neither forward Corey Whitely, nor team mate Ling, could get a shot away before the hosts cleared their lines.
Following a bright opening, things seemed to go a little quiet in terms of clear-cut openings, despite plenty of endeavour from both sides.
What was letting both Chester and the Essex side down was the final ball, with neither able to create a chance to test the keeper.
A long punt forward from Chester nearly led to the first goal, though, with Andy Halls finding James Akintunde on the edge of the box in the 34th minute.
Akintunde’s first touch set him up for the shot, but Daggers stopper Mark Cousins was able to watch it go wide of his far post.
The Blues forward went close again three minutes later, lashing a swerving shot at goal from 25 yards that Cousins could only parry away.
That proved to be the last chance of note of the half as the sides headed into the interval with the score goalless.
Within a minute of the restart, though, Daggers almost took the lead when Whitely delivered a cross from the right, but Cheek narrowly missed getting on the end of it.
Chester cleared the ball behind for a corner, which found Cheek at the front post, but the attacker nodded wide.
Daggers had an even better chance to take the lead in the 55th minute, with the visitors awarded a penalty after Morgan Ferrier was fouled in the box by Lucas Dawson.
Whitely stepped up to take the spot kick, but stuck it well wide of the right hand post, much to the disappointment of the travelling support.
However, the away faithful were delighted less than two minutes later when the Essex club did take the lead.
Ferrier, who scored the winner against Dover Athletic up, worked hard down the left before crossing to the back post, where Ling, who provided the assist on Tuesday, bundled the ball in.
The goal was full back’s third of the season, all of which have come away from Victoria Road.
It nearly got better for Daggers in the 60th minute when a cross from the left by Howells eventually found its way to Cheek in the box.
After taking a touch to set himself, the ex-Braintree Town man shot from 12 yards, but saw his effort cannon back off the bar.
With 15 minutes remaining, a quick counter-attack from Daggers resulted in Ferrier shooting from the edge of the box.
The former Boreham Wood attacker’s effort stung the palms of Chester stopper Alex Lynch, who could only parry the shot away.
The ball trundled its way to Daggers substitute Dan Sparkes on the left, who crossed for Howell to tap home a second for the Essex club.
Four minutes later, the Victoria Road outfit wrapped up the win when Cheek found the target.
After good link up play with fellow forward Ferrier, Cheek rounded Lynch before firing into an empty net for his fifth goal of the campaign.
In the final minute of the match, Cheek grabbed his second of the afternoon, slamming home after latching on to a header in midfield by Craig Robson.
It was a goal that wrapped up a comfortable afternoon for Still’s side, who are next in action away to Barrow on December 9.
Chester (4-3-3): Lynch; Halls, McCombe, Rowe-Turner, Gough; Rainey (Slew 68), James, Dawson; Akintunde, Bell (Astles 64), Hannah.
Subs: Vaughan (GK), Turnbull, Anderson.
Daggers (4-2-3-1): Cousins; Ling, Doe, Lokko, Howells; Robson, Boucaud; Whitely (Sparkes 73), Howell, Ferrier (Kandi 86); Cheek.
Subs: Moore (GK), Adams, Bloomfield.
Referee: Daniel Middleton.