Dover put on an excellent all round display against their full time Kent rivals with a Sean Raggett header securing a one nil victory. With Whites league campaign only just over a week away and with seven wins and one draw from eight games, manager Chris Kinnear believes his team are in the best possible shape.*Lpic1*

‘We trained hard last night for two hours and it is amazing they still had so much energy. They are all so fit and feel invincible right now. We even saw the full backs getting forward a lot more and almost scoring because they are so much fitter than last year. They are taking everything on board and are desperate to do well and have a strong desire to win games now.’

Dover are training three times a week compared to two last season and also have new training ground funded by the Jim Parmenter, which will be a key element if Dover are to be successful according to Chris. ‘The chairman has now sorted us out somewhere nice to train so we can work on things like set pieces like we did last night. Last year we hardly scored any goals from corners.’

Though games against the likes of Faversham, Tonbridge and Canvey Island have proved useful for fitness, the recent games against League one outfits Colchester and Gillingham have been a worthwhile test, of which Whites have passed with flying colours. ‘We were unlucky against Colchester and we ran them ragged for the last ten minutes and tonight we created lots of chances.’ Chris added ‘I watched Braintree against Cambridge and we look like we will do ok, but until you play them, you don’t know.’*Q2*

Dover’s solidity at the back in keeping the likes of Cody Macdonald and Danny Kedwell quiet was most impressive and similar to last season, adds to the liklihood of Dover’s mean defence being the key to being competitive. Kinnear however was quick to point out his team’s qualities at the other end of the pitch. ‘We are trying to get the ball up the other end and create lots of chances which we did tonight. We don’t play defensively. We went to Canvey and Sutton recently and scored lost of goals. Just because we don’t let the other teams score does not mean we are defensive – Other teams will panic if they cannot score which creates chances for you.’

Five recent new signings has meant competition for places has become fierce, with Kinnear facing a headache with the starting line up on the pitch and also with the players he will have to leave out of the squad altogether on match days. A problem he is happy to have. ‘It is good for the lads to have competition especially as the cover is important as you never know who may get injured. We had some good lads here to be fair last season, like Kamara and Forbes. The lads we have signed also have a good spirit and we want things to get better year on year.’

Kinnear also revealed there still may be one or two signings to come. ‘We still have something in the bank for someone to come in. We have not gone big time, but we have saved a bit for two or three quality players to come in – money is not as tight as it was last year.’*Lpic2*