Whites fans can expect a much better home performance than last time out predicts assistant boss Jake Leberl after his side lost 1-0 to newly promoted Concord at Crabble last Saturday. ‘We will not just be turning up for the game and the players should not need any motivating. Maybe the emotion and workrate of the Ebbsfleet game had an impact on the players, so we need to get off to a good start against Hayes and Yeading.’
Athletic did make amends with a hard fought win away to Whitehawk on Monday, with starlet Tom Murphy netting a penalty on the stroke of half time to steal his team a 1-0 win and Jake was satisfied with the victory despite the narrow margin. ‘Not many teams will win there and the sloping pitch plays a massive part – Whitehawk threw everything at us as they had nothing to lose and all we could do was contain them.’
Jake also had special mention for match winner Murphy. ‘I’m really pleased with him, he has settled in well considering he is quite shy and there are a lot of big characters in the squad, so it was good he wanted to take the penalty.’
Interestingly, Chris and Jake decided to only make one change to the team, with Tom Wynter replaced by Barry Cogan after the former had arrived late due to a personal issue. ‘The easiest thing to do is drop players after a bad game’ explained Jake, ‘but in fact players tend to naturally up their level the next time they play.’
Dover’s latest win saw them rise to 4th in the table with 9 points from 4 games, only 1 place behind early leaders Eastbourne. ‘We expected fours results but would have taken 9 points before those games’ said Jake.
Dover are not the only favourites to have surprisingly dropped points already and Jake was quick to acknowledge this fact. ‘Eastleigh, Sutton and Ebbsfleet have all had patchy starts, so it goes to show you can’t just turn up in this league and some of the results have been amazing!’