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Chris Kinnear hails heart of his Dover Athletic players after 4-3 win against Havant

Chris Kinnear praised the character of his side after Dover Athletic came back from 3-1 down to beat Havant & Waterlooville at home on Tuesday.

Three goals in six minutes at the start of the second half put the visitors ahead after Nortei Nortey had given them a first half lead.

Whites regrouped they hit back with goals from Jamie Allen, Mitch Brundle and Kevin Lokko giving them their first National League victory.

Dover manager Chris Kinnear. Picture: Andy Payton (3604904)
Dover manager Chris Kinnear. Picture: Andy Payton (3604904)

Kinnear said: “At 1-0 I thought we were absolutely outstanding. Then came out in the second half and had three crosses and scored three.

“It’s an inexperienced side after losing your three best defenders in the summer you have to try and bed these new ones in. That’s part and parcel of it.

“What you can never question is the player’s heart. A lot of sides would have felt sorry for themselves and lost six or seven nil.

“They hung in there and you have to be proud of them.

“At 3-1 it was ridiculous and I was ready to go home! They showed great character though and the supporters kept behind us.”

Nortey’s superb strike from the edge of the box in the first half gave Whites the lead and were comfortable going into the break.

Wes Fogden, Alfie Pavey and Theo Lewis scored with headers gave Havant a two goal cushion at the start of the second half.

Skipper Mitch Brundle led his side to the fight back and Kinnear praised the reaction from his side.

Mitch Brundle. Picture: Alan Langley.
Mitch Brundle. Picture: Alan Langley.

He said: “It was bad defending all around. It was bad marking and maybe the front lads didn’t keep the ball up there, midfield should have put pressure on them. It’s a team thing.

“Maybe we got carried away with overplaying. It’s a lesson learnt but we won.

“We didn’t want to talk about the goals and start pointing fingers (after the game). We will have a good look on Thursday and work on that and hopefully we will resolve that.

“We changed the way we play a little bit and want to knock it around a bit because we’ve got more players who like to play the ball but we don’t want that to be detrimental to letting goals in.

“We’ve got to get the right balance and with the players we’ve got we know they are going to give enough.

“You’ve got to hold your hands up to Brundle out on the pitch being the captain. I thought he was immense and wouldn’t let them lie down.”

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