League Two preview: Resurgent Dagenham & Redbridge look deadly


Fortunes will ebb and
flow over the course of a season, but it's around this time of year that the
dips start to tell us something about the character of those early pacesetters
targeting automatic promotion, particularly those with no previous experience
of what the race entails.

As things stand, Bradford should consider themselves satisfied with 17 points from ten matches on the back of three seasons finishing in the bottom half, but it requires a certain strength of character to brush off a couple of disappointing results and carry on regardless.

The Bantams have looked the real deal for the most part but emotions ran a little high after their heroic comeback in the Capital One Cup against Burton and now tide is beginning to turn against them. With that in mind, it's hard to resist the 19/10 about resurgent Dagenham & Redbridge beating the Yorkshire club on Saturday.

Our decision to oppose Phil Parkinson's men against Port Vale last weekend might have surprised some and reports suggest we rode our luck in the opening period as Bradford laid siege to the visitors' goal only to be sucker-punched shortly before half-time.

However, they failed in their attempts to level-up after the interval and fired another blank at Rochdale in midweek, despite playing the majority of the match against ten men. So doubts are suddenly being cast over the consistency of their attackers.

Daggers, meanwhile, are back in business after a miserable start to the campaign. With just three points on the board after seven matches, they now have eight after ten following a two-goal fightback at Rochdale, a 3-0 win over Wycombe and an impressive point at Port Vale in midweek.

Manager John Still sensed an upturn a few weeks back and those results show that the 62-year-old's instincts remain sharp. We don't expect anything spectacular from Daggers over the season as a whole but they can ride the crest of this particular wave a bit further against a team over whom they boast a formidable record.

Such is the length of time Bradford have spent in the basement, it's easy to forget what an attractive fixture this is for a club like Dagenham. The Essex minnows have beaten the Bantams five times in the last seven meetings, drawing the other two, a sequence that only goes back four years.

Meanwhile, Gareth Ainsworth wants to be taken seriously as a candidate for the Wycombe job, so he needs to make an impact in the caretaker role soon and we reckon he has enough goodwill in the dressing room to get that first victory on the board against Torquay this weekend.

The Chairboys are without a win in nine outings (if you include the abandoned game against Bristol Rovers) but they were much-improved when holding Plymouth 1-1 at Adams Park in midweek, with Ainsworth taking matters into his own hands by setting up the opener for Matt McClure.

Ainsworth, of course, has two previous caretaker stints under his belt at QPR and he laid it on pretty thick when praising his players for their efforts against the Pilgrims, so 19/10 isn't a bad price against a team who went to great lengths in overturning a three-goal defecit to beat Aldershot 4-3 in midweek.

Such heroics might be enough to put many punters off this wager but the Gulls were bang average throughout September and we reckon a slump could ensue on the back of those exertions against Dean Holdsworth's men.

Betting advice...

2pts Dagenham to beat Bradford at 19/10 (Bet Victor)

The Essex minnows have beaten the Bantams in five of their last seven meetings.

2pts Wycombe to beat Torquay at 19/10 (Bet Victor)

Ainsworth wants the manager's job and has enough goodwill to grab an important win.

For more betting advice, visit Best of the Bets by clicking here.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
CSKA Moscow celebrate after equalising with a late penalty

Arts and Entertainment
Life and Style

Company reveals $542m investment in start-up building 'a rocket ship for the mind'

Bourgogne wine maker Laboure-Roi vice president Thibault Garin (L) offers the company's 2013 Beaujolais Nouveau wine to the guest in the wine spa at the Hakone Yunessun spa resort facilities in Hakone town, Kanagawa prefecture, some 100-kilometre west of Tokyo
Arts and Entertainment
James Blunt's debut album Back to Bedlam shot him to fame in 2004

Singer says the track was 'force-fed down people's throats'

Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album