Category: Academy News


Dover Athletic Football Club can today confirm the departure of manager Andy Hessenthaler, who leaves the club by mutual consent after his contract was cancelled, with immediate effect.

Hessenthaler returned to Crabble for a second time 15 games into the 2018/19 campaign following the departure of Chris Kinnear.

Mitch Brundle and Mike Sandmann will take joint interim charge of the team for the next few games, starting at Hungerford Town on Saturday, whilst we consider a more permanent structure for the future.

Chairman Jim Parmenter said: “Andy has given terrific service to the Club and assisted me in navigating some very difficult times.

“I wish to place on record our gratitude for his efforts, understanding, and hard work during his time at the Club.

“He is a man of integrity and decency, and I am sure he will be successful in his next role.

“We remain good friends and Hess will be welcome at Crabble at any time.”

Everyone at the club wishes Andy all the very best for the future.


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.



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.


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 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.



Tickets for our Academy’s FA Youth Cup tie against Premier League Brighton & Hove Albion are now on sale.

The Third Round tie will be played at the  American Express Elite Football Performance Centre, which is Brighton’s training and teaching facility, in Lancing at 7pm next Wednesday.

Only 50 tickets are available and they can be purchased via the Brighton website HERE

Please note there will be no ticket sales on the day of the game.


Andy Hessenthaler’s squad returns to action at Crabble on Saturday following three consecutive away games.

White’s won 2-0 at Hampton & Richmond Borough last Saturday while the Hertfordshire visitors head to Kent on the back of a 3-0 win against Bath City.

The Saints will start the game, which kicks-off at 12.30 pm, in sixth place … six places and six points ahead of Whites.


You can read the St Albans City preview HERE


Dover Athletic 4-1 St Albans City

Dover’s last-ditch bid to steal a promotion play-off spot was foiled, despite a commanding win against relegated St Albans.

Other results failed to go in their favour and Martin Hayes’ side finished an eventful season in league and cup two points outside the playoffs.

Adam Birchall rounded off his impressive tally for the season at 45 goals in all competitions as he added a brace.

Nathan Ashton opened the scoring on 21 minutes following an impressive run by Harry Baker, who latched on to Barry Cogan’s ball over the top.

Birchall got in on the act three minutes later to double the lead, capitalising on some clumsy defending to finish cooly under the visiting goalkeeper Conor Gough.

Just before the break, Donovan Simmonds broke through the offside trap to make it 3-0 after 41 minutes.

In the second half, the visitors squeezed a goal back from a neatly taken Peter Smith free kick. But as expected, Birchall had the final say of a memorable season to net his 34th league goal on 64 minutes.

Dover Athletic: Ross Flitney, Matt Fish, Rob Gillman, Tom Wynter, Nathan Ashton, Harry Baker, Sam Cutler, Jon Wallis (Lewis Spence), Barry Cogan, Donovan Simmonds, Adam Birchall.

Subs not used: Elliott Charles, Olly Schulz, Sam Long, Lee Hook.

Attendance: 847


Defender Jake Goodman (hamstring) misses out after limping off in the second half of the win at Hampton & Richmond Borough last Saturday.

Fellow defender Will Moses is back in the matchday squad after missing last week’s game with a quad strain.

Young striker Noah Carney (knee) remains on the sidelines.


The game kicks off at 12.30 pm 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 be covering the game with Matt Gerrard on commentary duties HERE


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



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


Chelmsford City v Dartford
Concord Rangers v Hemel Hempstead Town
Eastbourne Borough v Chippenham Town
Farnborough v Hampton & Richmond
Havant & Waterlooville v Worthing
Oxford City v Dulwich Hamlet
Taunton Town v Braintree Town
Ebbsfleet United v Slough Town
Hungerford Town v Tonbridge Angels
Weymouth v Cheshunt


As a club, we are incredibly proud of what our Academy has achieved so far this season.

They have reached the Third Round of the FA Youth Cup and will take on Premier League Brighton & Hove Albion at the American Express Elite Football Performance Centre on December 14th.

Manager Mike Sandmann’s squad has won all six games they’ve played to reach this stage of the competition and is the only non-league academy left in it.

But what has been the key to the success of the talented squad?

Well, we caught up with Academy captain Bleu Landau and the leading scorer in the competition with 12 goals, Archie Hatcher, to find out and also find more out about themselves.

Bleu Landau

Archie Hatcher

Watch Bleu and Archie go head-to-head in a lighthearted Q&A



Our Academy will head to Sussex to play Premier League Brighton & Hove Albion in the FA Youth Cup on December 14th.

The Third Round tie will be played at the state-of-the-art American Express Elite Football Performance Centre, which is Brighton’s training and teaching facility, in Lancing at 7pm.

The Academy reached this stage of the competition after winning 3-0 at Lowestoft Town on Tuesday.


We can confirm that central defender Alex Green has today joined Southern Counties East Premier Division side Deal Town on loan for a month.

The 19-year-old former Academy captain made his National League debut as a second-half substitute against Boreham Wood at Crabble in August 2021 before a foot injury ruled him out for the season.

He made his first start of this season in the FA Trophy tie at Uxbridge last Saturday.

Go well, Alex, and enjoy your time with The Hoops.