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Dartford 1 Dover Athletic 1 - FA Trophy match report

By Alex Hoad

Dartford and Dover must do it all over again after a 1-1 draw in the FA Trophy first round at Princes Park on Saturday afternoon.

The wait to find out who claims the £5,000 prize money and a place in the second round will continue until a Tuesday night replay at Crabble after Ricky Miller's first-half goal was cancelled out by Ronnie Vint's second-half tap-in during an entertaining Trophy derby.

Both teams made a single change with Lee Noble being replaced by Danny Harris while Jack Parkinson came in for Chris Kinnear Jr in midfield.

Dover's Jim Stevenson is closed down by Dartford's Alex Brown. Picture Andy Jones

Dover's Jim Stevenson is closed down by Dartford's Alex Brown. Picture: Andy Jones

Dartford flew out of the blocks and Duane Ofori-Acheampong almost played in Andy Pugh within two minutes but it was the visitors who had the first shot as Miller hooked a volley at Deren Ibrahim from a tight angle three minutes in.

Dover looked the sharper and enjoyed joy down the left with Aswad Thomas' cross being cleared only to Moses Emmanuel who blazed over under pressure from 15 yards.

Parkinson looped a far-post header straight to Ibrahim while Thomas slashed well wide from 25-yards as Darts were pegged back for long spells, though Luke Wanadio did well to win a corner down the left from which Ronnie Vint volleyed tamely wide at the far post on 16 minutes..

Parkinson headed over from another corner while Tyrone Sterling did well to hold up a break from former teammate Ofori-Acheampong who eventually squared for Alex Brown to see a 20-yard swerving shot held by Steve Arnold at the second attempt.

Tom Gardiner limped off for the hosts midway through the half after failing to run-off an early knock, with his replacement Lee Noble quickly picking up the pace of the game.

The breakthrough arrived 10 minutes before the break when Emmanuel used mesmerising feet on the edge of the box to jink he way in and out of defenders before the ball broke for Miller to slot low past Ibrahim from the left of the six yard box.

After scoring his 27th of the season, Miller almost had his 28th three minutes later when his swerving drive was held at the second attempt while Thomas rose highest to meet a Magri corner, only to flash a header wide of the far post before half-time.

After the break Darts looked far more assured and Danny Harris saw a speculative 25-yarder fly just wide with Arnold beaten though Miller saw a pot-shot saved at his near post by Ibrahim who also thwarted the striker when through in the box moments later.

Ten minutes after the turnaround Lafayette nodded a far-post header from a Magri free-kick onto the roof of the net but the leveller arrived two minutes later when a deep Harris corner was headed down, Arnold could only claw off the line and Vint was on hand to fire home in a six-yard box scramble.

Dover and Dartford compete for the ball on Saturday. Picture Andy Jones

Dover and Dartford compete for the ball on Saturday. Picture: Andy Jones

The increasingly influential Ofori-Acheampong broke away down the right soon after but his low cross was just behind Wanadio, who was on trial at Dover in the summer.

Ofori-Acheampong almost flicked Noble clean through and saw a 20-yard shot of his own after a spin saved by Arnold with 20 minutes remaining.

Wanadio fizzed a cross across goal as Darts piled forward while a rare Dover break saw Emmanuel's cross just elude Lafayette at the far post.

Lee Noble slalomed forward but curled past the angle of Arnold's goal from 20 yards as the clock ran down but despite late pressure at either end nobody could break the stalemate.

Dartford: Ibrahim, Gardiner (Noble 24mins), Vint, Wood, Wynter, A Brown (E Brown 87mins), Bradbrook, Pugh (Hayes 46mins), Wanadio, Harris, Ofori-Acheampong. Subs not used: Dembele, Coxall
 
Dover: Arnold, Magri, Thomas, Orlu, Stevenson, Miller, Grimes, Sterling, Emmanuel (Pinnock 88mins), Lafayette (Modeste 83mins), Parkinson. Subs not used: Walker, Marsh, Kinnear Jr.
 
Attendance: 813.

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