The Insider: View from the Daggers

Josh Passley playing for Pompey last season Picture: Joe Pepler
Josh Passley playing for Pompey last season Picture: Joe Pepler

The Daggers are quietly confident of another mid-table finish in the campaign ahead.

Last season they ended up in 14th place so it’s a case of trying to kick on from there if possible.

Certainly, they impressed in a 1-0 friendly win over Crystal Palace on Monday, something they can definitely take heart from.

Palace had Alex McCarthy, Patrick Bamford, Connor Wickham, Brede Hangeland and Fraizer Campbell in their starting line-up, so had plenty of Premier League players.

But the Daggers ran out winners, with Nyron Nosworthy putting in his best pre-season performance so far.

They played with no fear and Mark Cousins was sensational in goal. Without a shadow of a doubt he will be a key player this season.

There is a new back four this year, and if the club are to have a good season he will probably end up winning the Player of the Year.

Nosworthy has looked a little shaky at times following his summer arrival, having last played at Portsmouth.

He has played alongside a few youngsters and, being the old head in defence, has had to try to work out their strengths and weaknesses.

It looks like he is slowly getting there.

Nosworthy is being asked to replace Scott Doe, who had been a rock for years before moving to Boreham Wood in the summer, in the centre of defence.

Another Portsmouth old boy is Josh Passley, who has been really impressive down the right-hand side, bombing on.

There is the concern he could leave big holes behind when he goes forward, but against Palace was really solid and that was definitely not an issue.

Matt Partridge used to be very attacking in that position last season, but has been moved to the centre of defence – and Passley goes forward even more than he did.

Speaking to a lot of people at Dagenham, there is confidence they can achieve something this season.

The summer saw the departures of Doe, Luke Howell (Boreham Wood), Billy Bingham (Crewe) and Abu Agogo (Shrewsbury), so it has been a case of trying to replace them.

Passley, Nosworthy, Matt McClure and Matt Richards have come in and, definitely, a few more are in the offing.

Against Palace, Kane Ferdinand had his name and number on his shirt, whereas the other triallists didn’t. That implies something could be happening there.

Up front will once again be Jamie Cureton, 39 years young and appearing to play a slightly deeper role following the arrival of McClure.

He netted 20 goals last season, although Christian Doidge has been looking sharp in pre-season and will be banging on the door.