Dover Athletic 0-0 Havant & Waterlooville

Match Report by Fred Deveson

It was a lovely, warm afternoon at Crabble yesterday, as Dover drew to Havant and Waterlooville 0-0.

It was the hosts who were on top from the first minute, creating good chances and dominating the ball.

The visitors opted for an offside trap from the start, which was effective in preventing Dover from having time on the ball, but it left them vulnerable in behind.

The Whites worked out that long balls over the top were the most effective route to goal and had some good chances from this.

Dembele was set through a couple of times but the goalkeeper denied him on both occasions. The forward also had a clever header go over the bar but was offside.

The linesman caused some controversy throughout the game with some questionable offside decisions which could have resulted in a goal scoring chance for Dover, but numerous times the flag went up, and some decisions were no doubt questionable.

The times that Dover did get in behind should have resulted in goals. Oyenuga returned to the starting lineup and was excellent defensively and offensively. He got forward well and put a ball in but Oliver fired just wide. 

Havant hadn’t had a sniff all first half. 

They did start the second well, however, and just 3 minutes after the restart they hit the upright with a good effort just outside the box. 

It wasn’t long before Dover were back on the front foot however, and Nikaj was seeing a lot of the ball in the wide areas. His good feet opened up plenty of space for the hosts but it was the same story for the Whites, who just couldn’t finish their chances.

Wilkinson had a great opportunity in the latter stages of the game to score for Dover, but he waited too long and then put his effort wide. 

The visitors saw red in the last 15 minutes, after their player picked up a second yellow. This should have seen Dover score towards the end, with the visitors being a man down but the chances kept coming and going for Dover. 

In the final few minutes, goalkeeper Rowley was called into action for one of the first times in the game and he made an excellent save to earn the hosts a point, when it arguably should have been three. 

A massive game next week against Farnborough awaits the Whites. 

Dover Athletic: Rowley, Charles-Cook, Mensah, Holding, Oyenuga, Naylor, Wilkinson (Baptiste 75mins), Oliver, Dembele (Assidjo 89mins), Nikaj, Allen. 

Subs not used: Oladipo, Young, Akehurst.

Havant & Waterlooville: Worner, Stanley, Innocent, Mcnerney, McCarthy, Carlyle (Jebb 61mins), Seager, Willson, Jewitt-White (Beckford 79mins), Kealy, Whittingham (Roberts 42mins). 

Subs not used: Mukuna, Woolston.

Referee: Tom Ellsmore.

Attendance: 552.