Johnson makes Darlington debut

First published in Darlington FC News The Northern Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Deputy Sports Editor

Paul Johson makes his Darlington debut in today’s match at home to Ebbsfleet United after arriving on loan yesterday from Hartlepool.

The 19-year-old centre-back comes into the side as the only change from the XI which started Tuesday’s draw with Luton Town.

Dropping out of the XI is Dale Hopson who is understood to be on the sidelined with an injury.

As on Tuesday, Quakers again name only three substitutes. Rob Ramshaw is among them after returning from a one-game ban, and he takes the place of David Ferguson.

The sides met last November when Hopson inspired a 3-1 win. It was the teenager’s debut and his prompting in midfield was the driving force of a thoroughly deserved win that saw Hopson score in the final minute.

Ebbsfleet are 14th in the table and arrive at The Northern Echo Arena on the back of some curious away form. Their last six matches on the road have featured 33 goals with 15 being in their favour.

Darlington are bidding to put an end to their winless run which stretches back to mid-December. They have not won in 11 matches, though that run would’ve been brought to a halt on Tuesday had Ryan Bowman not had a 95th minute penalty saved.

Referee: Richard West (Hull)

Darlington (4-4-2): Pickford; Arnison, Johnson, Taylor, Brown; Rundle, Keltie, McReady, Wainwright, Broughton, Bowman. Subs: Nixon (gk), Lambert, Ramshaw

Ebbsfleet United: Connor, Stone, Lorraine, West, Shakes, Phipp, Howe, Enver-Marum, Smith, Ughu, Barrett. Subs: Herd, McNeil, Azeez, Pinney, Bellamy

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