League Two Weekend Preview: Daggers too deadly for Dons
Friday 09 March 2012
Wimbledon's steady but barely noticeable descent towards the
relegation trapdoor continued with defeat at home to Plymouth in
midweek and now there's value to be had in backing Dagenham &
Redbridge to triumph at Kingsmeadow on Saturday.
The Dons are defending badly and struggling to make any real impact at the opposite end of the pitch, which is obviously a recipe for disaster should it continue, and both aspects were illustrated perfectly in Tuesday's reverse against Argyle.
There's a huge amount of pressure on Plymouth to survive at the moment, given the weight of history they carry on their shoulders, and their boss Carl Fletcher has since spoken of the incredible nerves that engulfed him and his players for most of the second half after Nick Chadwick had handed them the lead for the second time.
The Devon side are playing with a whole lot of uncertainty avoidance at the moment, which probably isn't surprising, but it leaves them extremely vulnerable when protecting a lead because they invite teams on by not taking enough risks to kill games off. Lucky for them, in this instance, that Wimbledon didn't have the wherewithal to take advantage and find a way through.
We see a different kind of game taking place on Saturday because Dagenham have happily assumed the underdog role in the basement relegation battle - even though they were playing League One football last season - and we can happily discard the draw cover that was essential to our Plymouth bet.
John Still is preaching a win-or-bust attitude on his players - they've only played out four draws all season - and it's beginning to reap rewards with a little more regularity than it was earlier in the campaign with Daggers posting their best six-match sequence to date prior to their 4-0 hiding at Swindon.
Some might look to the margin of defeat at the County Ground in midweek and conclude that confidence is brittle, but it's worth noting that Daggers were spanked 5-0 at home by Cheltenham three weeks ago and responded with seven points from a possible nine.
Taking on the league leaders after their derby defeat to Oxford was always going to be a thankless task but Dagenham's willingness to force the issue can reap full rewards against a team still dining out on a three-match winning flourish in January. Either side of that, Wimbledon haven't won for 19 matches.
1pt Dagenham to beat Wimbledon at 12/5 (Stan James)
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