REPORT | Dover Athletic 1-0 Wrexham

Macclesfield Town
Posted:Sat 12 Aug 2017

Our poor run of results with the Kent club continued with this narrow defeat at the Crabble Ground, when burly striker Ryan Bird’s close range effort after 18 minutes proved enough to decide this outcome.

Only three goals in those seven games tells its own tale.

Two changes for the Reds saw Dean Keates bring in Akil Wright and Jack Mackreth for their first full games.

The visitors should have taken the lead in the opening minutes, as Scott Boden saw the ball run free in front of him, but from eight-yards his shot was saved by keeper Mitch Walker, before Wright had his follow up effort blocked for a corner.

On nine minutes, Wrexham played the ball out of defence well and Marcus Kelly struck a long pass down the left wing that carried over centre half Giancarlo Gallifuco, allowing to let Mackreth to sprint away, but as he cut in to shape for a shot the Whites managed to get cover back and block.

On 18 minutes, the Reds fell behind when they failed to clear their lines, an initial shot was only blocked, collected by Kane Richards who saw Ryan Bird free six-yards out and he fired low into a corner of the Wrexham net.

Bird nearly claimed a second goal two minutes later when he got on the end of left wing cross from Femi Ilesanmi, but the ball carried inches over Dunn’s crossbar.

Approaching the half hour mark and Mackreth used his pace to once again give himself space to work with, as he cut in from the left, but in the end, he ran out of pitch and the ball ran behind for goal kick.

Nortei Nortey showed a side of his play that Wrexham fans had not been used to, when he spun away from Sam Wedgbury 35-yards from goal and fired off a shot that forced Dunn to dive to his left to save.

On 32 minutes, we saw a cross from the left was met by the head of Wedgbury at the far post and his effort bounced across the face of the Dover goal, but was outside of the far post.

The height and power of Bird worried Wrexham again, as a well worked cross in from skipper Mitch Brundle, was met by the head of the big centre forward, although on this occasion he was unable to direct his effort on target.

There was yellow card for ex-Boreham Wood full back Ilesanmi, as he brought down Scott Boden on the halfway line. Although the free kick came to nothing on this occasion.

Bird showed he was just as happy using his feet on 43 minutes, as he left rip with a long-range effort that wasn’t that far off target.

Ht 1-0

A minute into the second half and Wright burst through the middle and his good work led to a shooting opportunity for Mackreth, with forward testing Walker with a low drive from the edge of the Athletic box.

Former Chester man Richards had his name taken on 49 minutes, for a foul on Roberts.

Dover reacted with a break through the middle and as the Wrexham defence tracked back to cover, Jamie Allen fired of an effort from outside the box, but his shot carried high over the home terraces.

Allen then had a downward header into the Wrexham six-yard box hacked away by Wedgbury, following a corner to the home side.

Paul Rutherford was introduced for Mark Carrington after 58 minutes. This was followed by Ntumba Massanka replacing Boden seven minutes later.

Our final substitute was James Hurst after 78 minutes, when he replaced Kelly. The ex-Dover man slotting into midfield.

Pushing on, Massanka forced Walker to dive low from a pass in from the left, the Athletic keeper managing to grab the ball at the second attempt.

Then a cross from Wedgbury, aimed at Mackreth, was also picked off by Walker.

There was to be no late leveller for Wrexham, as happened last season, and we headed home empty handed.

Dover Athletic: Walker, Passley, Ilesanmi, Gallifuco, Parry, Essam, Richards (Daniel 90), Brundle, Allen, Bird (Sho-Silva 89), Nortey
Subs: Pinnock, Essuman, Adebowale.

Wrexham: Dunn, Roberts, Pearson, M Smith, Jennings, Carrington (Rutherford 58), Wedgbury, Wright, Kelly (Hurst 78), Mackreth, Boden (Massanka 65).
Subs: Dibble, Marx.

Referee: C Brook
Attendance: 1,012
Away: 139

Bookings -
Dover: Ilesanmi (38, foul), Richards (49, foul)
Wrexham: Jennings (76, foul), Pearson (90+2, dissent)


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