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Dover Athletic boss Chris Kinnear already has one eye on next season

Chris Kinnear says Dover have already starting making plans for next season even though they don’t yet know which league they will be in.

The Whites boss had to re-build his squad virtually from scratch after finishing sixth in 2016-17 and he says the club don’t want to be in the same position again this summer.

Strikers Jamie Allen and Tobi Sho-Silva – both out injured at the moment – have already signed for next season and Kinnear expects others to follow as he revealed how a surprise visit by chairman Jim Parmenter gave the squad a lift ahead of Saturday’s 1-0 home win over Torquay.

Dover manager Chris Kinnear Picture: Ian Parker
Dover manager Chris Kinnear Picture: Ian Parker

He said: “On Thursday the chairman, Frank (club secretary Frank Clarke) and the directors came down to training and were very jolly just to show that everyone’s in it together.

"He (Mr Parmenter) just came down to say hello to the lads and say we’re still backing you.

“We (the management team) knew he was going to come, the players didn’t and they thought ‘Why is he here?’ It was just to say ‘look we’re talking about next year and we’re talking to players now about them staying whatever league we’re in’.

Kinnear is delighted that Allen and Sho-Silva will be around again next season and he feels the pair's best is yet to come.

He added: “They were just starting to find their feet (before their injuries). They’ve got great attitudes. The club have got them signed on for next year already so that gives us good attacking options before we even start.”

Dover’s win over Torquay at Crabble was their first in four National League matches leaving them eighth but only two points separate them from the two teams above them.

Whites have four games left to book their play-off spot, starting with a trip to Maidenhead on Saturday.

The re-arranged home game with Tranmere follows on Tuesday before fixtures against Gateshead, at home (April 21) and Woking away (April 28).

Kinnear admits he loves this stage of the season. He added: "If we can win our home games and get something out of the away games I'm sure we'll be up there."

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