Cards prepare for rematch of National League finale
12:00am, Fri 27th Jul 2018
Woking vs Dover Athletic
Saturday 28th July 2018
Three months to the day since their last visit to the Laithwaite Community Stadium, Dover Athletic return to Kingfield to face a refreshed and rejuvenated Woking side, who despite now being a division below their visitors are beginning to look upwards again after a positive pre-season.
The Cards found their scoring boots on Tuesday evening as they put four past neighbours Westfield, making it four wins, one draw, two defeats and, perhaps most impressively, five clean sheets under new manager Alan Dowson. The boss now has just two games left to prepare his side for the start of our National League South campaign, which begins at East Thurrock United next Saturday.
It’s an almost entirely different Woking side to the one relegated by Dover back in April, when a stoppage time winner for the Whites put the final nail in the Cards’ proverbial National League coffin. Now, supporters at least have the opportunity to see their new team impart a small measure of revenge as the two teams make the final touches to their preparations for the new season.
This is our final home friendly so come along if you can to see how the boys are shaping up.
A brace from Jake Hyde, his first goals for the club since joining from Maidenhead United, plus goals from Max Kretzschmar and Declan Appau secured the Cards a comfortable victory earlier this week.
The team lined up with Sam Mason in goal, a back four of Jack Cook, trialists Dan Spence and former Eastbourne Borough man Kiran Khinda-John, and academy player Dan Choules; a midfield of Charlie Hester-Cook, another academy man, along with Paul Hodges – who was confirmed as our latest signing on Friday – and Kretzschmar; and a front three of Hyde, Greg Luer and Reggie Young. Kofi Halliday and Danny Taylor were the only remaining trialists on the bench.
Dowse has said that Cook, along with Christian Jolley and Charlie Wassmer, will likely miss the last two games of pre-season through injury, but he expects at least the former duo back in time for the trip to East Thurrock. Wassmer, who has managed just 45 minutes of pre-season action so far, could be out for a little longer. That opens the door for the likes of Ian Gayle, and perhaps one of the remaining trialists, to establish themselves at centre-back over the next two games.
Chris Kinnear’s side finished last season in eighth place, missing the play-off places on goal difference. Having finished the previous season in sixth, again missing the then four-team play-off system by one place, they will no doubt be determined to qualify this time around, despite tough competition in an increasingly competitive league.
To aid his play-off push Kinnear has assembled a strong squad. New signings include towering defender Moussa Diarra and midfielder Bedsente Gomis, both from Barrow, Swiss defender Tim Schmoll, who was with New York Red Bulls in the United States and spent time at Aldershot earlier this year, England C international Kevin Lokko, who was on loan with the club from Stevenage last season, and most notably former Woking striker Inih Effiong who joins from Ross County. One key player that has departed is Mitchell Pinnock who joined AFC Wimbledon.
Adults - £10
Concessions - £5
Under 16s - Free