Category: Community News

Community News

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

The Chairman, Directors, management, players, and staff of Dover Athletic Football Club would like to wish you all a very happy and healthy New Year.

So whether you are a fan, a business that supports us, or a volunteer, we want to say that we really couldn’t do it without each and every one of you, so thank you one and all.

 

MATCH PREVIEW: DOVER V DULWICH HAMLET

Manager Andy Hessenthaler’s squad starts the second half of its National League South campaign against Dulwich Hamlet at Crabble on New Year’s Day (3pm).

The Boxing Day clash between the two sides ended 1-1 at Champion Hill.

The hosts took the lead through Joe Felix in the 19th minute before Jordan Higgs scored our equaliser against his former club eight minutes before half-time.

DOVER TEAM NEWS 

Forward Chike Kandi, who missed the Boxing Day game with a back injury, is fit again and included in the matchday squad.

Young defender Harrison Byford picked up a knee injury in training this week and misses out.

PROGRAMME

Printed matchday programmes will be available for sale around the ground and from the club shop.

 

DOVER COLOURS

We will be wearing our all-navy away kit for the game as we proudly support Shelter’s #NoHomeKit campaign for a second consecutive year.

LAST TIME WE MET IN A LEAGUE GAME  AT CRABBLE  –  SEPTEMBER 8th, 2007

Dover Athletic 2-2 Dulwich Hamlet

Dover surrendered a two-goal lead in the 2-2 draw with the visitors in the Ryman League Division 1 South match.

Mark Lovell scored both goals for a Dover team which included our current manager Andy Hessenthaler.

Dover Athletic:  Dean Ruddy, Matt Fish, James Rogers, Matt Bourne, John Keister, Craig Wilkins, Jon Wallis, Andy Hessenthaler, James Dryden (Byron Walker), Francine Collin, Mark Lovell (Matt Carruthers).

Subs not used: Graeme Andrews, Sam Gore, Gavin Wright.

Attendance: 941

TICKET INFORMATION

Tickets for this game can be purchased at the turnstile only.

Prices are as follows:

Adults – £16

Over 60 – £14

Under 18 – £8

Under 11s continue to be free with paying adult

COVERAGE 

The game kicks off at 3pm and if you are unable to make it, we will be providing live updates on Twitter – @DAFCLiveText – follow us and get all the news as it happens.

BBC Radio Kent will also be covering the game with Matt Gerrard on commentary duties HERE

SUNDAY’S OTHER NATIONAL LEAGUE SOUTH FIXTURES

Farnborough v Hungerford Town
Slough Town v Oxford City
Braintree Town v Chelmsford City
Chippenham Town v Bath City
Concord Rangers v Cheshunt
Dartford v Ebbsfleet United
Eastbourne Borough v Havant & Waterlooville
Hampton & Richmond v Worthing
St Albans City v Hemel Hempstead Town
Welling United v Tonbridge Angels

BE A NEW YEAR’S DAY VIP

Start the New Year in style by enjoying our VIP Platinum Suite matchday experience for our National League South game against Dulwich Hamlet at Crabble on January 1st

Watch the game from the best seats in the house and let our matchday hospitality provide the ultimate way to spend your time with us.

The package includes:

  • Butler hosted lounge with large TVs and a projector showing the game

  • A three-course meal served at your table

  • Reserved undercover premium padded seating

  • Complimentary tea, coffee & mineral water, plus a dedicated paid bar before and after the match

  • Complimentary matchday team sheet

The very special experience costs £28 per person and is available for individual and group bookings, or as a gift voucher.

Please note that this price does NOT include entry for non-season ticket holders who do attend, and they will still need to pay at the turnstile on the day.

On the menu for the game will be :

  • Minestrone soup with Ciabatta roll and butter
  • Chicken, mushroom & leek pie, mashed potato, peas, carrots, and gravy
  • Golden layered salted caramel cheesecake served with cream

Arrival at the ground should be at 1pm and food will be served at 1.30pm.

There are only 64 spaces available, so all tickets will be sold on a first-come-first-served basis.

The dress code is smart casual.

To buy your VIP ticket please email gavin.hughes@doverathletic.com or call the office on 01304 822373

CLUB SUPPORTS #NoHomeKit CAMPAIGN

In the space of one 90-minute game, 25 households will become homeless in England – many of them will be families with children.

Home stadium. Home colours. Home game. The football community knows the importance of home – and we here at Dover Athletic are proud to be playing our part. We’re fighting for a future where everyone has the right to a safe home, particularly at this time of year.

That’s why we are supporting homelessness charity, Shelter’s, #NoHomeKit campaign, for a second consecutive year.

The initiative sees clubs across the country taking part by swapping their home kit for their away one to raise awareness for the cause.

That means we will wear our navy kit in the National League South game against Dulwich Hamlet at Crabble on Sunday, January 1st  and we encourage supporters to do the same if they are able to.

Shelter supports people and families who are suffering from the cost of living crisis, and its knock-on effects, with demand for housing being as high as it’s ever been.

Last year’s campaign was a huge success, with hundreds of clubs up and down the country taking part, raising over £500,000 for it.

Supporters can find out more and donate to Shelter’s campaign HERE

MERRY CHRISTMAS ONE AND ALL

Dover Athletic Football Club Chairman Jim  Parmenter, the Directors, management, players, and staff would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year.

Most importantly, we thank you, our fans, for your continued support – it is very much appreciated by us all.

We must also say a special thank you to our volunteers, who give their time so willingly, and our sponsors and commercial partners for their ongoing support.

So please enjoy a fantastic Christmas and cherish the time spent with family and friends.

FIXTURE UPDATES

We can now confirm the re-arranged dates of the three postponed National League South games against Taunton Town, Tonbridge Angels. and Worthing.

We will host Taunton Town at Crabble on January 10th at 7.45pm.

Our game at Tonbridge Angels will now take place at Longmead on January 24th at 7.45pm.

Worthing will visit Crabble on January 31st at 7.45pm.

 

 

 

 

POST-MATCH REACTION | MIKE SANDMANN | BRIGHTON 2-1 ACADEMY

Our Academy bowed out of the FA Youth Cup with their heads held high after losing to their Premier League counterparts in the Third Round tie at the American Express Elite Football Performance Centre in Lancing on Wednesday.

The hosts led 2-0 at half-time before second-half substitute Tim Marapara reduced the deficit in the 64th minute after pouncing on a poor back pass.

Manager Mike Sandmann was full of praise for his young charges after the game.

He said: “It goes without saying how proud myself and all the staff are of the players after that performance, one that saw us push a Premier League team all the way to the end.

“We knew Brighton was going to dominate the ball and we set ourselves up to frustrate and counter-attack when turning over possession – I thought we frustrated them for large parts of the game with most of it played in front of us.

“We got ourselves in some good areas and caused them problems early on In the game despite having a lot less of the ball.

“We were disappointed with the goals we conceded after allowing their player to turn 25 yards out and the header, which we should have defended better against regardless of the opposition we play against.

“At half-time, we spoke about the importance of staying in the game while getting ourselves higher up the pitch and waiting for our chance to take more risks.

“I felt we continued to frustrate but in a higher area and I’m pleased with the goal we scored as we had to be patient and wait for the opportunity for them to make a mistake which Tim punished them for.

“When it was 2-1 the whole atmosphere changed and it become a proper game and Brighton felt it.

“You could see that with their goalkeeper getting booked for time wasting and the management team kicking the ball away.

“Tim had another chance deflected wide which could have made it even more uncomfortable for them.

“Saying that I couldn’t be prouder of them all and the players will certainly learn a lot from the game

“We asked the players to leave everything out on the pitch and they certainly did that.

“It’s been a great journey for the Academy and on behalf of everyone we would like to thank you for the support and kind messages we have received – I can assure you that it certainly doesn’t go unnoticed.”

 

ACADEMY READY FOR CUP TIE

Academy manager Mike Sandmann wants one thing from his side’s FA Youth Cup Third Round tie with Premier League Brighton & Hove Albion this evening.

Sandmann is urging his talented young players leave the pitch at the American Express Elite Football Performance Centre in Lancing with absolutely no regrets.

He said: “Brighton will be the favourites and they will be expecting to win – we know that, so we have got to believe, give everything, and don’t stop running until the final whistle and I know this group will do that.

“All I ask is that the players go back into that dressing room at full-time having left nothing behind and having no regrets. It’s all anyone can ask.

“Whatever the outcome tonight, I will still be extremely proud of each and every one of them and I am sure I won’t be the only one.

“I said right at the start of this campaign that any competition we’re in we want to do well in and to reach this stage and be the only non-league Academy left in it is an incredible achievement.

“There is absolutely no doubt that they have all done the shirt proud.”

The game, which kicks off at 7pm, will be live-streamed by the hosts with the details and link available on the @OfficialBHAFC Twitter page later today.

 

TONBRIDGE GAME REARRANGED

Tuesday’s scheduled National League South game at Tonbridge Angels will now be played at Longmead Stadium this Saturday at 3pm.

The game was postponed on Monday due to the weather.

 

 

FROM THE CHAIRMAN

Chairman Jim Parmenter provides an update on the situation at the Club.

Firstly, it was a great shame that our National League South game against Worthing at Crabble last Saturday was called off by the match referee.

Frosted pitches when the temperatures are forecast to rise the following day are always a tough call.

The previous day ( Friday) when the temperatures and the forecast were virtually the same, we implemented a procedure to see the best treatment for the pitch and by 11am the pitch was completely thawed, so it was reasonable for the groundsman to assume it would be the same on match day.

Temperatures did rise to 4.5 / 5 degrees and the pitch thawed as expected. Unfortunately, a small strip on the main stand side about 1.5 meters wide had not thawed to the match referees liking by the time he arrived at 1pm.

Whether or not that made the game unplayable is a matter of opinion, but of course, in that situation, it is only the match referees’ opinion that counts.

It appears that these days the default seems to be to call the game off rather than do everything you can to get the game played.

Supporters will remember the many times over the years that an army of volunteers has helped me clear tonnes of snow from the pitch from early morning to get a game on. How times have changed!

I do get concerned when I see individuals surrounding the referee trying to influence his decision, but again it appears to be the modern way.

For us, it was even more disappointing as we had a lot of hospitality bookings and of course, Ross Smith the European Darts Champion, visiting.

The result for the club is that the postponement means that we have played only two home games in nine weeks, which for our operational finances is a disaster, our crowds have been well down on budget, and without that vital match income, I am left paying the wages.

Obviously, this is a situation that cannot continue for much longer so I urge all supporters to get along and support your club to ensure its survival.

To those who seem to believe it is a good thing to spread negativity on social media, I say all you are doing is harming your club, negativity breeds negativity, so please stop and think and get behind the team.

We are just a few points off the playoffs with a very good chance of achieving them, with some adjustments, good support will help us achieve that target.

Moving on to our community project in partnership with our friends and sponsors at Megger, there has been a setback in the funding of the proposed community 3G Pitch project.

Unfortunately, despite giving me their support in writing, which I, in turn, supplied to the Football Foundation along with many other letters of support. Dover District Council officers at a separate meeting and without informing me informed the Football Foundation that although they supported the scheme, they did not see it as “strategically important” and therefore they wanted any Football Foundation money available for other “more important” council schemes.

Whether those other proposals will bring as much to the community as our project remains to be seen.

I have contacted DDC for an explanation, but so far no reply.

Concerned supporters may wish to contact their local councilor on the matter.

This does not mean we can’t proceed with our plans, but as it stands without Football Foundation grants, we are 300k short of our funding requirements, even with the generous support of our sponsors and others.

I will continue to strive to find finance from other sources to complete the project and would welcome any help that may be forthcoming.

In the meantime, I am hopeful that thanks to our friends at Megger we will be able to proceed with appointing our Community Engagement and inclusion Officer to start our joint community project.

I would like to thank our staff for their dedication during a difficult year and our small band of volunteers, who continue to do a magnificent job keeping the club running particularly on match days.

In closing, I would like to wish you all a Happy Christmas, a prosperous New Year, and most importantly health and happiness to you and your families.