Some background on Truro City's next National League South opponents
Truro City embark on another eastward odyssey on Saturday with the 576 mile round trip to Dartford FC.
The destination is the 4,100 capacity Princes Park Stadium, which the Darts have been lucky enough to call home since 2006. The £7 million facility was funded by Dartford Borough Council in those pre-austerity days when local authorities could afford such generosity.
Dartford played three seasons in the Conference Premier before being relegated at the end of last season.
The first, 2012-13 was the most successful with an 8th place finish.
2013-14 was more difficult, with the club finishing in the relegation zone, only to be reprieved by Salisbury’s bankruptcy and subsequent expulsion from the Conference.
Another difficult season followed in 2014-15 and this time there was no last minute escape-act. Having won just eight of their 46 games, the Darts finished in 22nd place and were relegated to the new National League South.
Dartford have made a decent start to the new season with 4 wins, 2 draws and 4 losses, leaving the club in 10th place on 14 points. It’s been a nail-biting first 10 matches for the fans, with only one game decided by more than a single goal.
Recent form has been mixed, with just one win from the last four. Dartford will have been particularly disappointed to lose 2-1 to a formidable Oxford City side last Tuesday, having led 1-0 at half time.
Players to watch:
Defender Lee Burns is a club fixture with more than 230 appearances since 2009.
Summer signing Tom Gardiner, a 20 year old defender, has a CV which includes Hibernian, Luton Town and Cambridge City. Gardiner has played in every match so far this season.
Callum McNaughton is another new arrival at the back. The 6ft 4 central defender has played at West Ham, AFC Wimbledon and was part of the Bromley side that gained promotion to the National League Premier last year.
Club captain Elliot Bradbrook is a midfielder with 275 appearances for the Darts and has already found the net twice this season.
Meanwhile, Elliot’s brother, Tom Bradbrook is this season’s leading goalscorer with 5 in 10 games.
Striker George Sykes is the most recent signing and, as another 6ft 4 colossus, is a big presence up front for the Darts.
Finally, Manager Tony Burman is a bona-fide Dartford legend. Between 1978 and 1987 he made 488 appearances for the club, scoring 158 goals. He managed the club on and off between 1993 and 2005 and since then has been in charge continuously.
With its grass roof, solar panels and water recycling system, Dartford’s Prince’s Park has been described as the most environmentally friendly stadium ever built.
Bespectacled northern fashionista and occasional architect, Wayne Hemingway described it as: "the absolute number one new stadium in the country…ahead of Arsenal's Emirates Stadium and the new Wembley Stadium”. So stick that in your baguette and smoke it, Arsene.