Dover Athletic: John Whitehouse, Danny Walder, James Rogers, Dean Hill, Olly Schulz, Nicky Southall (C) (Craig Rocastle, 64mins), Jon Wallis, Tom Davis, Shaun Welford, Adam Birchall (Jerahl Hughes, 54mins), Lee Browning (Andrew Miller, 81mins). Unused subs:Sammy Moore, Jake Marsh, Lee Hook.
East Preston: Maciek Kason, Nathan Dacosta, Asa Nicholson, Adam Holman, Matt Windsor, Ian Saunders (C), Neil Reilly (John Meeney, 75mins), Dale Campbell (Tom Paine, 69mins), Terry Dodd, Kevin Budge (Jay Huet, 59mins), Chris Darwin. Unused
subs:Liam Dacosta, Matt Dodd, Paul Williamson.
Record win sends Dover through Whites comfortably into Third Qualifying Round
By Kevin Harris
Dover cruised into the next round of the FA Cup after beating their club record victory with an eight-goal win. The Sussex County League Division Two side kept it goalless for the first twenty minutes, but by halftime it was two-nil. Whites made it a thrashing after the break by hitting the net a further six times, sending Whites into Monday’s draw for the Third Qualifying Round.
Hess showed full respect to the side plying their trade four leagues beneath the Whites, by naming a strong side. Lee Hook and Sammy Moore were both rested, allowing John Whitehouse to make his first start of the season. Jake Leberl wasn’t risked after suffering with a neck problem, but Shaun Welford was fit enough to play up-front, alongside last week’s two-goal hero, Adam Birchall. Loan signing Andy Pugh wasn’t available for selection due to problems with his paperwork from Gillingham, but Craig Rocastle was on the bench after signing for the club two days ago.
Whites dominated possession from the beginning, and early chances were squandered by Davis and Birchall. Jon Wallis went closer, but saw his on-target effort deflected over his own bar by Adam Holman.
The pressure was beginning to tell, and Dover went within an ace of taking the lead when Welford’s header was tipped onto the bar by visiting keeper Maciek Kason. However, with 21 minutes on the clock, Whites finally opened the scoring. Welford lobbed the ball into the box, and Birchall flicked it to Schulz. Olly sliced at his first effort, before drilling his shot into the corner of the net.
Kason made a fantastic save to deny Schulz a second, diving to his left to block his header, before the second goal arrived. Dean Hill was left completely unmarked at the far post from a pinpoint Southall corner, and he headed in.
East Preston briefly threatened, and went close to halving the deficit. Terry Dodd was played through on goal, and Whitehouse had to smartly save his effort. The rebound looked to have fallen kindly for fellow striker Kevin Budge, but Schulz did well to thwart the visitors.
Whites should have got the third before the break. Good play by Wallis set up Birchall 12-yards out, but with just the keeper to beat, Kason made a fine point-blank save to deny him.
After the interval, Whites went to town, and could have got a hatful. Browning, Southall, Davis and Birchall all went close to finding the net within the first five minutes of the second half, but none of them were able to find a way past Kason.
Birchall was rested before the hour mark, allowing Jerahl Hughes to come on and use his pace down the right flank. And after Wallis had fired a free kick inches wide, Whites finally got the third. A superb through ball by Danny Walder was pushed into the path of Browning by the keeper, and Lee made no mistake from six-yards out.
Southall was then rested, allowing Rocastle to make his debut for the club. Craig had a solid game when he came on, never wasting possession, and playing the ball simple – he looks to be a good acquisition on first viewing.
The fourth goal soon arrived, once again set-up by Walder. Danny was allowed the freedom to regularly break forward from his right-back berth, and sent a dangerous cross to the far post, where Welford was on hand to head into the back of the net.
Wallis and Welford both went close to adding to the lead, before Kason made two smart saves, this time from Browning and Hughes. But with the game only having ten minutes left, Dover’s superior fitness began to tell, and they doubled the score in that time.
Davis fed Browning, and he lobbed the ball over the advancing keeper for the fifth goal. This proved to be his last action, as 16-year old Academy player Andrew Miller came on in his place moments later, the right winger given his chance to impress for the first team.
James Rogers set-up the sixth goal, finding Walder unmarked in the area to flick into the net – Danny getting the goal that his overall play had deserved. Wallis then capped a comprehensive victory with two long range efforts - the first a dipping shot from 25-yards, and another from just outside the area, again set-up by the impressive Walder.
Just as Whites were starting the celebrate notching their biggest winning margin since the 7-0 defeat of Weymouth in 1990, it was almost snatched away. A mix-up between Whitehouse and Hill allowed substitute Jay Huet the chance to net a consolation. However, with an open goal to aim at, albeit at a tight angle, the East Preston man fired into the side netting, to the disappointment of the visitors.
Whites ran out comfortable winners at Perry’s Crabble, and the win could have been even bigger had it not been for the fine performance of Maciek Kason in the East Preston goal. Dover will be happy with the win that takes them into the next round, and will be hoping for a favourable draw on Monday. Best of luck to East Preston for the rest of the season, your impressive cup run has been a deservedly proud moment for your club. Whites can now focus on the trip to Worcester on Saturday, as they return to league matters before the next round of the FA Cup the week after.
Referee: Mr. Rob Smith Assistants: Mr. Mark Ford& Mr. Simeon Potter