*BS*DOVER face two BIG home games in the space of four days, starting on Saturday when play-off rivals Braintree come to Perrys Crabble.*BF*
Whites will hope to repeat the performance that earned three points against the same side a few weeks ago. A dominant 2nd half display earned a 2-1 win, ending Braintree’s 13 match unbeaten home run.
After last weekend’s postponement at Bishop’s Stortford, Whites should be fit and raring to go for two important home matches in their chase for a play-off spot.
The Dover boss said: “Saturday is a very big game. A win and we go above Braintree having played the same number of games. One or two wins is all you need to get right back in the thick of it.
*Q1*”The table is really tight, we’ve got games in hand on some teams now where just a few weeks ago we had played more than anybody else. It’s all changed around.”
Maximum points against Braintree and Worcester could see Whites back in the top three. Going on an unbeaten run would see the team fly up the table, with so many sides capable of beating each other.
Hess’s men will need the supporters to do their bit too. After a long run of away matches, where Dover fans regularly out-sung the home crowd, the atmosphere at Crabble last time round was somewhat flat.
However, moving into the final dozen games of the season with promotion via the play-off still an exciting possibility, Whites’ loyal fans need to recreate the travelling atmosphere to make Crabble a fortress again for their team.
Hess said: “The fans have been great since I’ve been here, and we need their backing more than ever now. The players thrive off the atmosphere they create.”
Director Chris Oakley said in his recent programme notes: “Our away support is second to none and I feel very proud when I hear away teams and directors singing their praises.
*Lpic1*”Bang those drums and cheer the boys on, it does make a difference.”
One positive from the lack of football for Dover in the past two weeks is that several players have been able to get some much needed rest and recuperation, shaking off niggling injuries.
Adam Birchall and Jon Wallis were injured against Maidenhead but are both fit for this weekend. Matt Fish is available for selection again after three games on the sidelines due to a sore back.
Craig Cloke and Jake Leberl will soon provide more options for Hessenthaler in defence and midfield, as Whites start a run of 12 games in seven weeks. Goalkeeper Lee Hook should also be ready to provide further competition.
*BS*THE BIG MATCH – SATURDAY 6 MARCH
Dover Athletic vs Braintree Town – BlueSquare South*BF*