MATCH PREVIEW: Bristol Rovers vs Dagenham & Redbridge

Rovers midfielder Billy Bodin celebrating a goal the last time the two sides met.

Rovers midfielder Billy Bodin celebrates scoring a goal the last time the two sides met.               (Credit BBC Sport)

By Simon Gray

Bristol Rovers go into the final day of the League Two season knowing that anything but a win will mean the lottery of the Play Offs.

Rovers entertain already relegated Dagenham and Redbridge at the Memorial Stadium needing a win and results at Accrington or Oxford to go their way.

Under manager Darrell Clarke, Rovers have been involved in two dramatic final day’s with this weekend’s fixture set to take that tally up to three.

In the two previous years, Rovers have just fallen short of what they needed to do, losing 1-0 at home to Mansfield on the final day of the 2014 season to send the club down before a 7-0 thumping of Alfreton Town on last season’s final day was not enough to seal automatic promotion back into the Football League.

Clarke is hoping it’ll be third time lucky for him and his side.

“We are looking forward to final day drama for the third season in a row,” Clarke told the Bristol Post.

“In the first season we were relegated, last season we won 7-0 and still missed out on the (Conference) title, so could it be third time lucky?

“We just have to do our job against an in-form Dagenham side who have won their last two games and then hope for a bit of luck from elsewhere.

“Whatever happens on Saturday, the players can be very proud of their performances and their achievements this season.”

Rovers go into the game on the back of a 4-1 demolition away at York City last weekend. They face a Dagenham side that have won their last two matches, a 3-2 away win at 6th place Plymouth before a 3-0 home win against Crawley. The two victories has seen the Daggers rise above York into 23rd place.

Dagenham and Redbridge manager John Still is looking forward to his Daggers side finishing the season, especially finishing away at the Memorial Stadium.

“If you look at any league, the so called bigger clubs with the bigger support are great games to play in.” He told the club’s website.

“It will be like that at Bristol Rovers because they have got something on the game. I’ve spent some time there and it’s a great club and I’ve got some fond memories of it.

“It will be a really big occasion there and it’s a good test for some of our younger players who’ve done great in the last couple of games so I’m really looking forward to it and the players should be as well. “


The last time the two sides met was back in December, Rovers won 3-0 and this result brought an end to Wayne Burnett’s managerial reign at the Daggers.

Daggers manager John Still was in charge of Luton as Rovers beat them 1-0 at Kenilworth Road in the third match of the season.

Rovers have won five and lost five of their 10 games against the Daggers, there has never been a draw.



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