Darlington returned to winning ways with a 7-0 victory over Kendal Town at Heritage Park, as the away side had two players sent off in the first ten minutes. Tez Galbraith scored two penalties, Hatch, Dowson, Armstrong, Fisher and Scott also scored.
Kendal found themselves reduced to nine men after nine minutes in the Quakers second bizarre home game in a row. The visitors lost their first man for a straight red card for dissent moments after he was being off the field receiving treatment for an injury. Minutes later they were down to nine men after Liam Hatch was brought down when clear on goal outside the box.
Martin Gray had made four changes to his starting line-up. Jordan Robinson, Adam Reed, Stephen Thompson and Liam Hatch all made their first starts of the season, replacing Brown, Fisher, Scott and Armstrong.
Gary Brown was not included in the squad, but was at the game.
Darlo made hard work of the first half and it took them over half an hour to open the scoring, Liam Hatch heading home a cross. Tez Galbraith then doubled the lead from the penalty spot after David Dowson was pulled back whilst running towards goal.
With the game pretty much wrapped up at half time the second half was more like a training ground exercise. To their credit Kendal never stopped and worked their socks off, but Quakers were able to take advantage of the space to increase their goal difference.
Dowson scored his first of the season with a shot from outside the box, before Galbraith scored his second penalty after Hatch was bundled over. Hatch, Dowson and Reed were replaced by Armstrong, Fisher and Scott, with all three subs managing to get on the score sheet.
New signing Graeme Armstrong added to his two goals from Tuesday night, with a shot which deflected over the keeper. Transfer listed Fisher then struck, before Scott rounded off the scoring from outside the box.
It could have been more with Mitchell and Thompson both forcing the keeper into acrobatic saves, but it finished at 7 and a good day’s work for the Quakers.
Darlington were clinical in the second half, but the game as a contest and spectacle was decided by the referee early on. Only the referee and player will know what was said for the first sending off, but I don’t think Kendal can have any complaints about the second.
The players who came in, Reed and Robinson, both had good games without being spectacular. Thommo struggled in the first half, but picked up in the second despite not getting on the score sheet.
It’s hard to compare the performance to others, however Tom Portas looks to be a fantastic signing in the centre of midfield, just keeps the ball ticking over, whilst being able to get back and defend as well.
Elsewhere, Salford City again won as they made it four from four, we moved up to fifth, but have a game in hand on the rest as we await the outcome of the Warrington farce.
Darlington’s next game is against -our friends at West Auckland in the FA Cup next weekend, hopefully this time the major talking point will be the football.
Darlo Team – Jameson, Robinson, Hunter, White, Galbraith, Mitchell, Reed, Portas, Thompson, Dowson, Hatch