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Dover Athletic boss Chris Kinnear would like to rest some of his players but that looks a remote prospect


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Dover boss Chris Kinnear would like to rest some of his players – he knows some of them could do with it ahead of a hectic festive schedule that sees his side play four games in 10 days.

Trouble is that they are all so eager to keep playing, starting with the Vanarama Conference clash against Welling at Crabble on Boxing Day (3pm kick-off).

Kinnear, whose resurgent team travel to leaders Barnet on Sunday (3pm), said: “The lads just don’t want to stop playing and why wouldn’t they?

“They are hungry, committed and have such a will-to-win each and every game they play. No one wants to miss out.

Dover could not have wished for a better time to play against Crystal Palace according to boss Chris Kinnear.
Dover could not have wished for a better time to play against Crystal Palace according to boss Chris Kinnear.

“And besides, it’s hard to change a side that is going so well and you just don’t go doing it for the sake of it.”

However much Kinnear might not want to make changes, his impressive backline could see one enforced for the Welling clash if defender Sean Francis (groin) doesn’t respond to treatment.

Goalkeeper Andy Rafferty should also return from suspension after missing the 2-2 draw at Altrincham last Saturday following his red card in the FA Trophy first round win at Lowestoft a week earlier.

Whites goalkeeping coach Lee Hook played at Altrincham with Mitch Walker also out of action and Kinnear said Hook let no one down.

He said: “None of the keepers in my squad would have saved either goal.”

As for the clash with Welling, Kinnear said he didn’t know what to expect from them now they have a new manager in Jody Brown.

The trip to Crabble will be the first game in charge for Brown, who replaces Jamie Day, who left on December 10 to take over at Vanarama South Ebbsfleet.

Kinnear, whose side are unbeaten in eight league games, a run which includes four wins, said: “Having a new manager can go either way for the players he inherits.

“It could be a case of them getting to grip with his style of play straight away or they have no idea.”

The last time a Dover side tasted defeat was when a fringe side lost 3-1 at home against Folkestone in the Kent Senior Cup on November 4.

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