• Michael Christou

Both sides show strong defensive resilience to earn a point each.

Updated: Jan 29, 2019


Photo: Zoe Ingram

10 man Havant and Waterlooville fended off Dover pressure to ensure both clubs get a hard fought point, meaning both stay three points above the relegation zone.

Havant were reduced to ten men after referee Will Finnie gave Chris Robertson his marching orders in the 36th minute. The referee dismissed the Hawks player with two bookings, firstly for taking down a Dover midfielder in the centre circle and the second for pulling the shirt of the advancing Jamie Allen.

This was a big match for both teams as they are involved in a relegation dogfight this season, with a potential six pointer being played at The Westleigh Stadium.

Havant is one of two teams in the National League that are not a professional club. Glenn Thorpe (Club President) spoke to me before the game: "We knew this season would be tough... we will do well to stay up this season."

Unfortunatly for Mr Thorpe, Havant didn't begin well with Dover starting as the better side. This gave the Hawks problems in defence, with Mitch Brundle's corner sent in to the six yard box it lead to an early penalty shout after defenders dived in.

Havant created a couple of chances, one of which came to Jack James who whipped in the ball from the right, looking for Matt Paterson who's glancing header went wide.

Photo: Zoe Ingram

The Hawks fans grew restless as the Dover pressure grew. The ball ended up in the back of the net but was disallowed due to infringement in the box.

Dover had the best chances of the game, the first coming from Jai Reason who rose above the rest to head a powerful cross sending it glancing just over.

The first half ended with Havant striker Alfie Rutherford cutting in on the left wing and taking it to the by line and firing a shot that was blocked, leading to a scramble in the area that was eventually cleared by Dover.

Dover started the second half on top. They had an intricate passing move on the edge of the area before Mcnamara took the ball to by line to put in a low cross that was blocked away for a corner.

Photo: Zoe Ingram

Dover continued their long lasting pressure, with Jai Reason turning the Havant defence inside out, going one -on -one with Hawks keeper Dudzinksi making himself big and blocking the shot, with the rebound going wide.

Havant got back into the game late on with some pressure forcing a mistake from the Dover defenders and the resulting shot was a poor one and was easily dealt with by the recovering defenders.

Havant then had a succession of dangerous corners with one of them hitting the crossbar directly from the corner, alluding both sides.

The final action of the game was a corner, Max Paterson's stoppage time header was cleared off the line by Millwall loanee Dan McNamara.

Photo: Zoe Ingram

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