This is the twenty second instalment of the ‘DAGENHAM AND ME’ series in which we explore fans’ and former players’ relationship with the club. This will be done over the Christmas period with interesting stories being told daily and debate will no doubt spark over Dagenham’s all-time XI! Behind door number 22 is supporter, RUSSELL, enjoy :)


Full Name: Russell Elmes 

My favourite player currently is Elliott Justham, in my opinion the best keeper in the league, I feel he could easily play at a higher level. I am not a season ticket holder but usually sit in the carling stand after having some friendly "banter " with the reprobates who stand behind the goal next to the old club shop.

You can count on one hand how many games I miss a season both home and away. Me and my big mouth as in 1997 the supporters club were looking for a new travel secretary and I said I would help out for a couple of years and 22 years later I am still there. 

Saw my first game at the "vic" in 1967 FA Cup vs Tonbridge in the 1st round, Dagenham won 1-0 and I have just managed to get a copy of the programme from 53 years ago! Tonbridge was my first ever "live" game. 

A special relation I have with the club is that I am chairman and travel secretary of the supporters club. 

My favourite games, well, there are a few but for different reasons with Charlton, the play off final and away to York all up there. For the atmosphere/excitement Charlton Athletic away in the FA Cup is the my favourite. For achievement it would have to be the play off final at Wembley as it took the club to new heights - the third division of English football! 

Finally for ‘all being in it together’ York City away in our conference winning season as the supporters coach picked up the team from york station. As we turned into Bootham Crescent York fans were lined up on both sides of the road and it was like a scene from that old film called ‘the gauntlet’. 


My favourite Christmas game has got to be Leyton Orient last season because of the arrogance of their fans before the game and their players once they scored plus I hate the o's - putting it lightly! 

What has changed over the years is simply that I have become a lot more involved as I started as just a fan on the "sieve" and am now involved with the supporters club.

Best manager is a tough one but I have to go for Ted Hardy as he picked us up from the lowest point ever in 1996 and rebuilt the club - he laid the foundations for Garry Hill and John Still. 

My favourite players are Tony Roberts as it goes without saying - he was just a great servant and played. Ashley Vickers is my second favourite but a certain Mr. Creaser is my favourite Dagger of all time. Glyn was Ted Hardy’s right hand man and would do anything for the club; he ensured Ted’s instructions were carried out and that everyone followed suit. 

My best away day, all my favourite games were away, but I must admit I did enjoy winding the York fans up when I arrived with the team! 

Here is my Ultimate Daggers XI and of course Glyn Creaser makes it into the back four: 


Thanks for reading,


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