ALTRINCHAM FC MATCH REPORTS
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DOVER ATHLETIC (0) 0
ALTRINCHAM (1) 1
played on Saturday, 30 April 2022 at 3pm
In a fairly uninispiring first half Alty had the better of things and took a 37th minute lead when Hancock converted a low cross from Mooney.
Alty continued to have the better of things in the second half but were unable to add to their single goal with Osborne's header against the post the nearest to a second goal.
- 37 mins: Josh HANCOCK (Dover Athletic 0 ALTRINCHAM 1)
REFEREE: Mr Paul Johnson
For today's match, Altrincham brought back loanees Harry Perritt and Jake Cooper at the back as Toby Mullarkey and Andy White dropped out, presuambly to be rested. Salford City loanee Hayden Campbell was included in a matchday squad for the first time, on the bench. Jordan Hulme remained sidelined by injury, so Josh Hancock again led the attack.
DOVER ATHLETIC (White shirts and black shorts and socks): 44. Alexis Andre, 23. Danny Collinge, 2. Will Moses, 24. Harrison Byford, 30. Myles Judd, 32. Arjanit Krasniqi, 28. George Wilkinson, 29. Luke Baptiste, 33. Michael Gyasi, 16. Harry Ransom (c), 39. George Nikaj. Subs: 1. Josh Bexon, 14. Marshall Wratten, 18. Henry Woods, 35. Kierran agbebi, 40. Jack Nelson. .
ALTRINCHAM (Yellow shirts and socks, blue shorts): 1. Tony Thompson (c), 23. Harry Perritt, 14. Jake Cooper, 24. Kyle Ferguson, 28. Eddy Jones, 8. Elliot Osborne, 32. Isaac Marriott, 7. Dan Mooney, 15. Matty Kosylo, 11. Ryan Colclough, 10. Josh Hancock. Subs: 20. Andy White, 25. Toby Mullarkey, 17. Ben Pringle, 26. Kole Hall, 34. Hayden Campbell
Dover made few friends last season by unilaterally refusing to complete their fixtures but manager Andy Hassenthaler has earned respect in this campaign for keeping his makeshift side playing positively, despite being starved of resources and contending with a twelve-point deduction imposed for the club's withdrawal from the competition last season.
However the Kent club continues to do little to build bridges with opposition supporters.
Not for the first time, Dover refused to allow Radio Robins to transmit this game citing an agreement with local radio which curiously seems only to apply to their club and not the myriad other clubs with similar ties to the BBC local radio network.
Thankfully the National League proper will be spared this attitude next season as Dover drop to the South division. Judging by the paucity of the gate today at Crabble the home supporters will need some major inducgement to return to the club.
The Whites were seeking to go into positive points' territory for the first time this season having clawed back their twelve-point deduction recently.
For their part, Altrincham had endured a lengthy journey to Kent on Friday with a coach breakdown delaying their arrival.
This was the first Robins' match against Dover at Crabble which had not subsequently been voided or behind closed doors (as in 2020-21) since 2015. On that occasion Dover had won with an 89th minute goal as goalkeeper Stuart Coburn was prostrate with an injury which effectively ended his illustrious career for the Robins.
Inside the first minute a foul on Colclough yielded a freekick, which the former Scunthorpe man himself took. The keeper could not hold it but Dover hacked it away (2 mins).
After Kyle Ferguson had seen off Nikaj (4 mins), Josh Hancock was unable to latch on to a long ball forward (6 mins). Tony Thompson then made a routine save from a Nikaj header following a long throw (9 mins).
Minutes after being treated for injury after colliding with Ferguson, the lively Nikaj almost scored for Dover from Gyasi's pass but Eddy Jones made an important challenge (15 mins).
At the other end, Alty had two chances blocked as Marriott fed Mooney, whose effort was diverted to Kosylo, who likewise had his shot blocked (17 mins)
A foul by Osborne on Baptiste earned the Alty midfielder a booking (20 mins). Dover then won the game's first corner, which was unproductive (22 mins).
Next, a long-range effort from Kosylo was saved comfortably by Andre (25 mins) before a Marriott foul yielded another home freekick (27 mins). The next shot on goal was saved by the busy Andre from Colclough (28 mins).
Altrincham went closer after 31 minutes when Hancock's header fed Mooney but a good challenge from Moses denied him, with a corner being the outcome.
At last, Alty took a 37th minute lead when a low Mooney cross from the right was steered home from six yards by Hancock to record his ninth goal of the season.
Next, there was a stoppage as Kosylo then needed treatment to a head injury (41 mins). Just before the interval a foul on Colclough led to the same player striking the resulting freekick into the defensive wall.
Two minutes of added time left the score one goal to Alty's advantage after a far from enthralling first half.
Half-Time: DOVER ATHLETIC 0
Hansom was replaced by Nelson at the interval for the hosts.
Altrincham started the second half on the front foot when Colclough set Kosylo at goal but he was blocked off. Colclough picked up the loose ball but he, too, was halted before a Hancock effort came to Kosylo.
Andre saved the winger's shot with Kosylo putting the rebound over the bar (47 mins). However, Dover responded well by earning a corner (49 mins).
But as Alty continued to press forward, Andre made another good save for Dover after 53 minutes, conceding a corner from a Jones long-range shot, which he pushed past the post.
Altrincham were well on top as Perritt now got upfield and forced the overworked Andre to concede another corner (57 mins). And the pressure continued when Osborne's header struck the post from Mooney's corner (59 mins).
Krasniqi then found himself booked for hauling down Mooney as the wingman got free from a Hancock pass (61 mins).
With Alty in control, Osborne fired narrowly off target before Dover made a change when Agbebi replaced Nikaj (64 mins). Moments later, Hall came on for Hancock at the top of the Alty attack (66 mins).
Hall was soon in action but the keeper just beat him to a Colclough feed (68 mins). The next Alty chance saw a well-struck Mooney shot hit his team-mate Kosylo.
Kosylo was then subbed by debutant loanee, Campbell (73 mins). Dover responded in kind as Wratten replaced Moses for the hosts (74 mins). Wratten was almost immediately booked for a foul on Colclough (77 mins) as Alty continued to be unable to convert their superiority into a second goal.
Alty's third change saw Colclough give way to perennial substitute Pringle (81 mins). But there was still life left in Dover as a Gyasi shot caused Thompson concern as it went past the post (84 mins).
The hosts then threatened again with a header over the bar from a long throw (88 mins).
Four added minutes were decreed in which time Byford was booked for a foul on Jones. However, Cooper was unable to convert the resulting freekick with a header.
Hall then won a late corner (90+2 mins) but a disappointing game was to end 1-0 to the visitors.
Full Time: DOVER ATHLETIC 0