Dagenham & Redbridge’s history with Southport is of little concern to boss John Still
PUBLISHED: 12:30 05 August 2016
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Daggers manager not interested in revenge despite loss in last meeting with Port
Dagenham & Redbridge begin their National League campaign at home to Southport on Saturday in a match sure to bring back memories of one of the club’s lowest moments.
Back in November 2014, Daggers were drawn against the Port in the first round of the FA Cup and, after a dull goalless draw at Victoria Road, were beaten 2-0 in the replay on Merseyside.
It is a result that is considered to be one of the darkest moments in the Essex club’s recent history, with staff and fans arguing after the full-time whistle at Haig Avenue.
That all occurred under former boss Wayne Burnett, who was sacked in December 2015 with John Still returning to take charge at Daggers for a third time.
But with only three members of the 18-man squad from that dismal night at Southport still at Victoria Road less than two years later, the current boss insists that revenge is not on the mind.
“I’ve got no control over what went on when I wasn’t here. Whoever we’re playing, we want to win it and it doesn’t matter who we’re playing,” said Still.
“I haven’t got any history with Southport at all and if I did, I don’t look back. What’s gone is gone, I can only control the controllables. I can’t control what happened so many years ago.”
Daggers, though, can look ahead to the new season with confidence having enjoyed a good pre-season campaign that saw them hit 19 goals in six games.
Striker Oliver Hawkins grabbed five of those, while at the back there were also positives as the returning Scott Doe appears to have brought composure back to the defence.
Doe, who has been named as captain for the upcoming season, missed the 1-0 loss at home to Wimbledon on Saturday with a shoulder injury, but is expected to be fit for the weekend.
And he will no doubt be excited for the season to get going, just like boss Still as Daggers aim for a return to the Football League at the first attempt.
“Everyone looks forward to the start of the season. Pre-season games are necessary evils and everyone wants the season to start, we’re no different,” added Still.