Darlington 2 Wrexham 0

Last updated : 11 August 2007 By Footymad Previewer
New-look Darlington began the season in fine style with a comprehensive victory over their Welsh opponents and they also got the clean sheet that had been predicted by manager Dave Penney before the season began.

It was a disappointing afternoon for the visitors who went down to a goal just before the break, but after Darlington keeper Andy Oakes was sent off in the second-half they felt that this was their chance to get something from the game. But it was not to be and a further goal for the home side secured the points on a sunny, summer afternoon in the North East.

Chances were limited in a quiet first-half as both sides began the new season at a slow pace.

The visitors came close to opening the scoring when former Hartlepool striker Eifion Williams tested Oakes from only eight-yards out, and then at the other end of the pitch home striker Tommy Wright fired goalwards on the half-hour mark only to see his effort deflected wide of the target.

Darlington finished the first period on a high and Julian Joachim fired goalwards from the edge of the area and it took a defensive header from Danny Williams to clear the danger.

As the half drew to a close, home striker Kevin McBride, signed from Motherwell in the close season, headed in the game's opening goal when connecting with a cross from Pawel Abbott.

Wrexham came close to an equaliser when former Sunderland striker Michael Proctor headed narrowly over early into the second period.

Abbott fired in an excellent finish into the top corner in the 55th minute but the referee ruled the goal out after a narrow offside decision.

The visitors still felt they could get back into the game when Oakes brought down Proctor and was red-carded in the 63rd minute but Joachim eased the home side's nerves when he latched on to a flick from Wright and fired into the top corner of the net in the 72nd minute.