18th April 2012
DORCHESTER FOOTBALL: Simkin looking forward to the future
Dorchester Town 0 Staines Town 3
Blue Square South
DORCHESTER Town manager Phil Simpkin has had a torrid time since he took over following Alan Knight’s resignation two weeks ago, with illness, injuries and bad luck marring his first two games in charge.
Already missing Tom Nicholls who has returned to Exeter City after his loan period and Max Worsfold, struck down by the bug that also meant the recovering Ashley Nicholls could only take his place on the bench, Simpkin had to deal with keeper Nick Jones dislocating his finger in the warm-up.
Jones had to go to hospital leaving Simpkin with no recognised replacement on the bench. Kyle Critchell eventually donned the green jersey resulting in a reorganisation of the team with Jamie Symes stepping into midfield.
However in another unlucky twist to the game, the first two goals were the results of unfortunate deflections off Nathan Walker and Neil Martin that saw the Massive virtually ensure safety from relegation with this win.
In an effort to protect Critchell, Dorchester changed their game plan and in general it worked well, except it meant that Ryan Dovell found it lonely up front on his own.
In fact a combination of some sterling defence and poor shooting from the opposition saw Critchell hardly called into play, and it was left to Dorchester to find the net for them four minutes from the break, when Walker couldn’t get out of the way of Kyle Vassell’s shot which hit the post and then rebounded off the central defender’s knee into the net.
Halftime brought another problem for Simpkin when Symes complained of chest pains and Nicholls was forced to play the second half despite having been ill for several days with a bug.
Critchell showed his prowess between the sticks early in the second half when he produced a superb flying save to tip Ali Chabaan free-kick around the post.
However he was beaten by his own team mate midway through the half when Martin looking to clear a dangerous cross from David Wheeler only succeeded in helping it in the net beyond Critchell.
After Sam Malsom had wasted the Magpies best chance of the game by heading Walker’s nod back straight at Potter, Critchell produced another good save, this time from Gareth Risberger.
But he had no chance soon after when the striker produced an unstoppable shot that fizzed past the stand-in gloveman to complete the scoring.
Simpkin said afterwards: “Anything that could go wrong did. They didn’t deserve to win by three goals but they made the most of their good fortune.
“It was difficult. No one likes to lose and I wanted to finish the season well but events have conspired against us to say the least and any good fortune I have had in the past has certainly been returned in the last 10 days”
“Sometimes there is nothing you can do about it, but to be fair to our supporters they realised what the situation was and clapped us off at the end, and I was really chuffed that they made a point of letting us know that they knew that we had given our best in the circumstances.
“To be fair to Kyle as well, it takes some nerve and courage to go in goal as he did.”
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