Here I have rated all the Dagenham players out of ten for their performance in The Daggers’ win over Hartlepool. It was a great victory that marked how far Taylor’s side have come this season in just eleven games. There is always debate over player ratings so let’s see how this goes!

The shot stopper was solid as always yesterday despite not keeping a clean sheet. Most notably, he denied Hartlepool a goal from 25 yards, Elliot tipped the free kick over as he did against Bromley. Not only was his shot stopping excellent as always, the No.1 read the game excellently - he was first to every loose ball.

Will has certainly improved from last season, there is no doubt about that, defensively and going forward. However it was the latter that let him down slightly yesterday - Wright was a little too ambitious. As oppose to finding Dobson down the line, Will was looking to switch the play before assessing simpler options. Despite that, his defending was decent with good presence in the air.

Well - I was very tempted to give both centre backs 9s but thought that may be too generous. Manny has built a great partnership at the back with the captain and that showed yesterday as it did at York Road. Onariase’s pace was key as Hartlepool looked to launch it over the top at times - the No.4 was equal to it.

The captain kept his side tight defensively on the whole but the score line sums it up well. One lapse in concentration saw Hartlepool equalise and as always it saw them win the second ball and capitalise. That is one thing I feel Clark needs to work on; organising his players at set pieces.

Luke wouldn’t be my first choice left back but he is solid defensively - there is no doubt about that. His years in the football league are evident in his position and tackling; nothing gets past him. However, the reason he is not my first choice left back is because it looks how it is - a back four with three centre backs. As Luke isn’t one for getting forward, I feel it left Luque isolated out on the left flank - no linking up.

Matt looks to have been as the best central midfielder being a regular starter now in the side. Now that is not due to numbers (goals & assists) but his battling and continuous fight. Another attribute that he showed yesterday was his distribution - that I feel is what sets him apart from the others (that are not injured). This ability allows him to break up the play and turn attack into defence - a great player to have.

Phipps didn’t have his best game yesterday I believe; when he does he controls the midfield. Though you can’t fault his commitment and desire which was visible yesterday. The man is always determined to win the ball but yesterday when he got it he almost threw it away - didn’t look where he was passing. Nonetheless he put a decent shift in, that is why he is rated 7, just above average.

The man is a magician. Angelo is always a threat going forward despite sometimes going missing - magicians never lose their touch. Yesterday, Angelo was involved in almost every attack coming up with a goal as well - he showed great desire to beat Killip to it. This explanation may feel shorter than the others, though the rating is better, but he needs little explaining.

The better of the two wingers for a change  - James Dobson. He just seems more and more involved every week which of course is a good sign. James converted from the spot last week but unfortunately couldn’t get amongst the goals this week despite coming close. Dobson did seem held back yesterday by Wright who was wary of the threat his opponent posed. That I feel stopped him from really pushing forward hence why I prefer Eleftheriou.

The Spaniard was on fire last week but this week it wasn’t the case - for the first time in a while. He did get an assist but didn’t really look a constant danger yesterday - he so often does. Regardless, he got a rapturous applause from the home support when substituted because he is a fans’ favourite. Joan just simply wasn’t seeing enough of the ball in my opinion; that is how he plays with great trickery with the ball at his feet. Off the ball he posed a threat but nowhere near as deadly as when he is on the ball - then he is unplayable at times.

‘The striker is useless’. That was my initial opinion six weeks ago but how things have changed - he is now a key player. Yesterday saw him get a second brace of the season proving to the league he is a goal scorer. Joe silenced his critics that afternoon against Yeovil and now he is slowly but surely becoming popular amongst supporters. 

The first of the goals was a good finish after a setback and the second saw him in the right place at the right time. It wasn’t only his goals that earned him Man of the Match but his hold up play was excellent.

▶️ Bagasan Graham 9️⃣

Onto the substitutes and starting with the best of them all - Bagasan Graham. The winger replaced Luque on the left and made an instant impact. His pace destroyed the full back, so much so he got the best assist of the season. That is why I gave him a 9 - the man was unstoppable racing down the left flank. 

▶️ Alex McQueen 7️⃣

Alex played well when he was introduced to the field of play but didn’t quite do enough to get an 8. He had shots blocked and made the crowd go mad but not for scoring a goal - for being denied one. McQueen was shoved over in the counter by Hawkes (the last man) but the ref didn’t send the defender off! 

▶️ Reece Grant 6️⃣

Reece Grant replaced Balanta and played in the 4 additional minutes but just didn’t have time to get into the game. He did set up an opportunity for McQueen however in the last knockings. 

Thanks for reading, 
Keane. COYD 💙❤️⚔️


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