Southall reflects on ‘missed opportunity’
Southall reflects on ‘missed opportunity’

Dover Athletic assistant manager Nicky Southall has described the side’s loss at Hartlepool United on Saturday as a “missed opportunity”.

Speaking on behalf of Andy Hessenthaler, Southall was also disappointed in the refereeing decisions which lead to Dover dropping a 2-0 lead to lose 3-2 in County Durham.

“We played some really good football and we were unlucky to go in 2-0 up at half time. It could have been 3-0.

“We came out for the second half, trying to control the game, keeping the crowd quiet and we did but then on 68 minutes he gave that decision which changed the whole momentum of the game.”

Two penalties in as many minutes allowed Hartlepool to level the game before Luke Molyneux gave the hosts a 91st minute winner.

At half time Dover were one of two teams in the bottom six to be winning and they could have gone seven points clear with a win.

“We’re disappointed” said Southall. “We’ve looked at the results and it’s a missed opportunity because a few teams around us lost and we could have maybe pulled clear again.

The first spot kick came from a handball which kick started Hartlepool’s impressive second half. “Bobby-Joe Taylor said that his hands were down and that it was more ball to hand than hand to ball, to give that one in that manner is disappointing.

“In terms of that we’re really disappointed. The one where AJ [Anthony Jefferey]’s clearly won the ball and then to give another penalty is another kick in the teeth for us. The boys didn’t deserve that.”

“It’s really gutting to be honest. The boys are really low after the game. I thought [in] the first half the gameplan was working excellently. We scored two great goals and unfortunately we were let down by some questionable refereeing decisions and that’s what cost us.”