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Dover Athletic manager Chris Kinnear disappointed at FA Trophy defeat to Dartford

By Alex Hoad
Chris Kinnear could not hide his disappointment as Dover allowed an early lead to slip to a 2-1 defeat to Dartford to crash out of the FA Trophy in a first round replay at Crabble on Tuesday night.
 
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Chris Kinnear. Picture: Barry Goodwin

Jim Stevenson put Whites ahead early-on with a strike which keeper Deren Ibrahim should have saved, but Ronnie Vint fired the visitors level moments later, just as he had in Saturday’s initial tie, and a 20-yard blast from former Dover trialist Luke Wanadio on the stroke of half-time was enough to win it as Dover fell short of their usual standards. 

Boss Kinnear admitted: “I am very disappointed. We started the game quite well and looked like we were going to go on but we basically didn’t have the same desire they had, to be honest about it."

It's the third straight year Dover have been ousted from the competition by a side from a lower level and means Kinnear's wait to lead a team out at Wembley will be extended by another year at least.

He admitted: "We were desperate to do well in the competition. We were stressing it to the players. We were just lacklustre. (Assistant) Jake Leberl and I were at them and at them, telling them.

“We spoke about it on Saturday after the game. Maybe they thought it was going to be easy, but nothing is easy in this game.

“Dartford had nothing to lose and worked very hard. I can’t say they didn’t deserve it, but we had some unbelievable chances and got nowhere near. We had chances but we still, hand on heart, did not look as sharp as we should have been.

“There was a little bit of lack of desire. Hopefully we’ll learn from that, we should do, that’s what we said to them in the changing room. 

“You have got to learn from that or we’ll find it difficult.”

 

Kinnear questioned whether Whites style of play is suited to Cup games and overcoming lower-tier opposition, adding: "These type of clubs do make it difficult - you just have to look at Stoubridge (who beat Dover in the FA Cup last season) beating Northampton (also on Tuesday).

"To be fair we are set-up to play in the Conference. We came into the league and it took us 10 games but it's a different type of play.

"We’ve set up and changed it a bit and obviously done well in the last couple of years once we got our head round what was needed."

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