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Maidstone United 2 Dover Athletic 2 match report

By Craig Tucker

Substitute Joe Anderson scored a last-minute equaliser for Maidstone against Dover.

Anderson, on for the injured Josh Hare, ran on to Alex Wynter's pass and made it 2-2.

Femi Ilesanmi had given Dover a half-time lead with a long-range wonder strike.

Femi Ilesanmi gives Dover the lead Picture: Andy Payton
Femi Ilesanmi gives Dover the lead Picture: Andy Payton

Tom Wraight levelled with a bullet header midway through the second half but Whites looked set to take the points after Nortei Nortey’s solo effort.

But Anderson changed all that as the sides drew 2-2 again.

United made four changes to the side who drew at Aldershot on Saturday, while Whites made one switch following their stalemate with Halifax.

Maidstone made most of the early running, playing some neat football in the Dover half but the visitors were on their game at the back, Manny Parry sticking to Joe Pigott like glue on his return to the Gallagher.

Pigott managed to get the better of Parry to plant a firm header at Mitch Walker from a Wraight cross as Maidstone threatened in the opening 10 minutes.

The Stones went on to create few good opportunities, Jamar Loza losing his man from Josh Hare’s cross but seeing Walker equal to his header, while Wraight curled wide when well-placed from Loza’s pass via a deflection.

Jamar Loza is tracked by Kadell Daniel and Femi Ilesanmi Picture: Andy Payton
Jamar Loza is tracked by Kadell Daniel and Femi Ilesanmi Picture: Andy Payton

Dover had been content to sit back and attack on the break and when Johan ter Horst lost possession, a rapid counter ended with Alex Wynter making a timely block from Kadell Daniel’s strike.

Whites went on to take the lead in the 27th minute, the ball running into space following a Reece Prestedge challenge and into the path of left-back Ilesanmi who set himself and arrowed a stunning strike into the top right corner from 30 yards out.

Dover had a good spell after the goal, Daniel’s strike cleared off the line and Worgan troubled by Mitch Pinnock’s strike from distance.

Maidstone, though, went close to a first-half equaliser with Stuart Lewis’ diving header from Pigott’s cross turned past the post by Walker.

Loza curled inches wide on the hour as Maidstone plugged away against a well-organised Dover backline.

They were rewarded with an equaliser in the 69th minute, Seth Twumasi playing the ball up the line to Pigott, whose cross from the left was met by Wraight with a thumping header.

Wraight made a good block at the other end soon after while Liam Bellamy fired wide after the ball dropped from Ryan Bird’s header as Dover had to come out and play again.

Stuart Lewis' diving header is kept out by Mitch Walker Picture: Andy Payton
Stuart Lewis' diving header is kept out by Mitch Walker Picture: Andy Payton

They were back in front in the 77th minute with Nortey’s lovely solo run from his own half taking him to the edge of the Stones box where his low shot went in off the post.

It was a terrific effort from Nortey but Maidstone were kicking themselves for not stopping the run.

Maidstone kept going and when Wynter brought the ball out of defence and played in Anderson, the substitute full-back delivered the equaliser.

Dover almost snatched a late winner, Worgan with an excellent save to deny Connor Essam from a few yards out.

Maidstone: Worgan, Hare (Anderson 80mins), Twumasi, Okuonghae, Wynter, Prestedge, Lewis, Loza, Wraight (Paxman 80mins) Pigott, ter Horst (Sam-Yorke 63mins). Subs not used: Reason, McCorkell.

Dover: Walker, Passley, Ilesanmi, Gallifuoco, Parry, Essam, Brundle, Nortey, Pinnock, Bird (Alabi 86mins), Daniel (Bellamy 68mins). Subs not used: Richards, Fazakerley, Deen-Conte.

Attendance: 2,502.

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