Barnet will be raring to go this Bank Holiday Monday when they take on Dagenham & Redbridge at The Hive London.
The Bees picked up their first win of the season on Saturday thanks to a 90th-minute screamer from Jack Taylor against Chesterfield.
Dagenham come into this game bottom of the table but in the Vanarama National League, there are only tough games and the visitors will be more than up for it too.
John Still was in the opposing dug-out last time we met Dagenham back in February 2016 and it’s safe to say, it wasn’t the best of days for the current Bees boss.
The Daggers, who fielded now-Barnet boys Mark Cousins and Andre Boucaud, ended the day bottom of the league after falling to a 2-0 defeat to the Bees.
Luke Gambin found the net on 24 minutes before Michael Nelson rounded off the victory for Martin Allen’s side with just over 20 minutes of normal time remaining.
The Bees, who have beaten Dagenham in their previous two meetings, will be looking to inflict a third consecutive defeat but it won’t be a straightforward procedure.
Manager: Peter Taylor
Peter Taylor is embarking on his first season at the helm of Dagenham and Redbridge since former boss Still joined the Bees this summer.
The former winger, who made four caps for England, kicked-started his managerial career back in 1986 with Dartford after a 19-year football career. Taylor played for the likes of Tottenham Hotspur, Crystal Palace and Leyton Orient before he was named player-manager at The Darts 32 years ago.
The Rochford-born boss has been around the block, that’s for sure. After Dartford, Taylor became manager at Southend United before leaving for Dover two years later. Despite signing a new contract with The Whites, England boss Glenn Hoddle came knocking, offering him an opportunity he couldn’t refuse. Taylor left Dover shortly after committing his future in order to become the new England U21 boss where he went on to oversee 11 wins in 15 games.
After leaving his international duties in 1999, he moved back to the Football League, spending a year at Gillingham. His first stab at managing the Gills lasted only one season, ending with a quarter-final FA Cup finish and promotion to Division One.
His next destination was Leicester City, spending just over a year at the Foxes. During that time, he was appointed England caretaker boss, overlooking a 1-0 defeat to Italy. He also named David Beckham as Three Lions skipper for the very first time.
After guiding Brighton to Division Two triumph in 2002, he went on to manage a Hull City side who clinched back-to-back promotions, rising from Division Three to the Championship. During his spell with the Tigers, Taylor was back in England colours, returning to the U21 side. He kept his role when he swapped Hull for Crystal Palace in 2006, a club he spent three years at as a player.
He then moved to Stevenage before guiding a Wycombe side to League Two promotion in 2009, just under a year before he was appointed Bradford manager. Bizarrely, after a short spell with the Bantams, he became boss of the Bahrain national team.
After spending just under two years in Asia, Taylor then took charge of the England U20 side before returning to Gillingham seven months later.
His second spell with the Gills only lasted a year and after that, it was a return to Asia for Taylor, taking charge of Indian Super League franchise Kerala Blasters. After leaving only five months later, he took a break from management before returning just under a year later to become the assistant manager of the New Zealand national team.
His most recent spell as manager before Dagenham came in 2017 where he became interim boss at Gillingham shortly after returning to the club as Director of Football. However, he left both roles in October of last year.
One to Watch: Elliott Romain
Striker Elliott Romain joined Dagenham in 2016 from Eastbourne after bagging 20 goals for the Sussex side during the 2015-16 season.
Two loan spells away from the club at Welling and Torquay saw the front-man regain his goal-scoring form meaning he was able to be a part of Taylor’s plans for this season.
The new Dagenham boss gave Romain the nod this campaign and in their opening five games, the forward has already picked up two goals and one man of the match award.
His electric start to the campaign will undoubtedly have boosted his confidence and he will be aiming to add to his goal tally when Dagenham travel to the Hive tomorrow.
As previously mentioned, Dagenham currently sit bottom of the table and have only picked up 1 point in their opening 6 matches, a 2-2 draw with Maidenhead United.
Defeats to Boreham Wood, Maidstone, Aldershot, Halifax and most recently Hartlepool have given the cash-strapped Essex club a tough task for the months ahead.
The Daggers took the lead against Hartlepool on Saturday through an Alexander McQueen strike, but two second half goals for the Pools were enough to send them back to the North East with all three points.
Similarly to his time with the Bees, manager Still also took charge of Dagenham on three separate occasions. The 68-year-old returned to the club in 2004 and 2015 after his first spell back in 1992. During his time with the Daggers, he guided them to League Two promotion in 2010, three years after topping the Conference National.
When Still took over in the summer, he brought quite a few faces in that Dagenham fans will be very familiar with, one of them being goalkeeper Mark Cousins. The 31-year-old arrived at the Hive after spending four years with the Daggers where he made over 100 appearances.
Craig Robson is another one who will be facing his former club tomorrow after signing from the Daggers this summer. He made 79 appearances, scoring four goals over two years spent at Victoria Road. He was also Dagenham captain last season and picked up the Supporters Player of the Season award before his departure.
Bees midfielder Charlee Adams joined Dagenham from Birmingham City in 2017 and went on to make over 20 appearances for the side in his first and only season with the club.
Andre Boucaud is another summer signing who followed in the footsteps of Still in arriving from the Daggers. He spent four years at Victoria Road after joining from Notts County in 2014, making over 150 appearances for the club.
Dan Sparkes will also come up against old team-mates tomorrow after making 25 appearances for the Daggers in the National League last season, netting four times.
Barnet’s long list of summer arrivals that have featured for Dagenham stretched even further when Medy Elito arrived at the Hive last month. The 28-year-old first joined tomorrow’s opposition on loan from Colchester in November 2010, a spell which lasted two months. After returning to his parent club at the end of the campaign, he was soon released meaning the Daggers could make their move. Elito signed permanently in 2011 and made over 100 appearances in three seasons with the club, scoring 18 goals.
Ricardo Santos began his career at Dagenham, progressing through the youth set-up but failed to make a first-team appearance, leaving the club in 2013.
Off the field, assistant manager Darren Currie was also Still’s number two at Dagenham after a playing career which saw him pull on the Daggers shirt in two separate spells. He made over 41 appearances for the club, scoring one goal.
As for the opposition, former Bee Gavin Hoyte could come up against his former club tomorrow. He arrived at the Hive back in 2015 but his short stay at Barnet was overshadowed by a cruciate knee ligament injury. The defender made over 20 appearances before leaving for Eastleigh in December 2016.
Tickets start at £15 for Adults and £5 for Under 17’s. They are available in advance and on the day from the Ticket Office.