Can Kinnear make it four out of four?

Monday 06th February 2006
Margate, who have won the John Ullman Kent Senior Cup for the past three years, host their Ryman Premier League rivals Folkestone Invicta in the quarter-finals of this season’s competition at Hartsdown Park on Tuesday night.




We bring you previews from both clubs as they look forward to the game, which kick’s off at 7:45pm.

A match report will follow on Wednesday.
Written by Steve Wells -

Can Margate make it four out of four Kent Senior Cup wins? If they are to do so, they need to start with just their second win of 2006.

Already through to the semi-finals are Bromley – who trounced a youthful Welling United 7-0 at Park View Road last week – Ramsgate who overcame Dartford. The other outstanding quarter-final (to be played Monday evening) sees Dover visit Gravesend & Northfleet.

The Kent Senior Cup has been a good competition for Gate over the past few seasons. Wins in three successive years against Welling, Folkestone Invicta and Dover Athletic have seen the Blues join an elite club of sides to have won the cup three years in succession: Gravesend & Northfleet (2000, 2001, and 2002), Dartford (1931, 1932, and 1933) and Northfleet who won the cup five times between 1924 and 1928.

In last year’s final, Dover enjoyed the early territorial advantage; but Margate always seemed to be defending comfortably and made more chances than their opponents. Adrian Clarke, Ross Smith and Che Stadhart – who scored from one – shared Margate’s chances, while Craig Cloke scored for the Whites from the spot.

In the second half, Gate became more dominant and it was no surprise when the Blues went ahead through Rocky Baptiste. Gate had chances to extend their lead through Aaron Barnett, Peter Benevides, Mark Green and Pat Gradley. Dover’s second half chances came from Craig Wilkins and Anthony Hogg.

In addition to last season’s ill-fated semi-final that saw the tragic death of Paul Sykes, Gate and Invicta have met twice in the Kent Senior cup since 2002. Back then, Margate ran out 2-1 winners at Cheriton Road at the Quarter Final stage.

In the 2004 final between the two sides, Martin Chandler opened the scoring from the spot when he despatched his 44th minute penalty to Phil Smith’s right to put the Stripes a goal up.

Ten minutes after the half time break, a ball over the top found Baptiste close to the Folkestone area. Baptiste was dispossessed by Adam Flanagan but the lose ball was picked up by Jean Michel-Sigere who moved into the area only to be brought down from behind by John Walker. The referee had no hesitation in awarding the second penalty of the game – former Margate man Paul Lamb talking himself into the referee’s note book. Adrian Clarke stepped up to take the spot kick and hit his low effort in off Kessell’s right hand post.

The scores were level through to the 84th minute when man of the match John Keister scored the winning goal for Margate. Clare who was also one of Gate’s best performers on the night crossed into the middle. Sigere rose to get the knockdown which was picked up by Keister who turned and with his right foot thundered the ball past Kessell into the back of the Folkestone net.

In the Boxing Day league encounter, Margate’s draw-count hit double figures for the season with a 1-1 draw. In truth, Invicta may feel a little aggrieved that they did not take all the points.

The Stripes created most of the chances in the first half, although only really testing keeper Charlie Mitten on a couple of occasions.

Margate set the pace in the opening stages of the second half, but then the visitors gradually got themselves back into the game – again creating most of the chances.

But then on 82 minutes Margate should have taken the lead. Brayley’s great run down the left allowed him the opportunity to find Adolph Amoako. His effort on goal was only partially cleared as far as Ian Hilaire but from six yards he couldn’t get his foot around the ball and Folkestone cleared the danger.

Shortly after, Margate came forward on the right, and a great ball inside found Hilaire and he made no mistake beating Kessell with a low effort – Hilaire’s third goal of the season.

But then with two minutes remaining, Invicta were level. It was another swift break on the right and this time the ball was switched accurately to the left. Walid Matata collected the ball and from the edge of the Margate area let fly with a powerful effort that gave Charlie Mitten no chance.

On current league form, Folkestone could be considered marginal favourites for this county cup clash having accrued 10 out of a possible 18 points in their last six games.

Gate meanwhile, have six from a possible 18 points, including the 2-1 home win over East Thurrock United. But the Stripes away league form is their Achilles heel – losing seven and drawing four of their 14 away league games this season. Margate have lost just three home games.

Manager Chris Kinnear may take the opportunity to shuffle his pack for this game. Osman Sesay, James Donovan and Amoako could well start, and Daniel Domoah could make his debut. Keister may get some kind of run out – injury permitting - but Hasim Deen could be doubtful after twisting his ankle against East Thurrock.

This game may have come a little too soon for Anthony Allman and Charlie Mitten, and with Paul Egan still suffering from a back problem, Darren Behcet should continue in goal.

In Matata Folkestone have acquired a good replacement for record scorer James Dryden, as his recent scoring record demonstrates. But like Kinnear, Neil Cugley may also elect to rest some of his players.

Written by Andy Bown and Tom Marchant –

Folkestone Invicta take on Margate in the Kent Senior Cup on Tuesday night at Hartsdown Park.

Invicta manager Neil Cugley has said he will be taking up a squad of 16 players, including Kieron Mann and Joe Neilson.

However, he stated that he won’t be deciding the team until he gets to Margate. Centre back Adam Flannagan has now completed his three-match ban and is back in contention for a place in the starting line up.

Neil is a strong believer in the value of the Kent Senior Cup, feeling that it adds tradition to football in the county and at the club.

“We’re an old fashioned club and we want to do well in this cup because it’s nice for the town and at the end of the season, it’s nice for the fans to have a good day out.

”I will therefore be putting out a strong side and even though I have options, we will be going out to win it, so I hope the fans come and support us”.

The previous meeting between the two sides resulted in a 1-1 draw at Hartsdown Park on Boxing Day in a league match. Walid Matata scored Invicta’s equaliser with his first goal for the club since arriving from Dover Athletic, after Ian Hilaire had put the home side ahead minutes earlier.

Margate manager Chris Kinnear continues to shape his squad in preparation for a promotion push next season, which has seen the arrival and departure of a number of players.

Recent signings include the capture of striker Danny Hockton from Billericay Town for an undisclosed fee in January of this year and experienced defender Robin Trott from the same club.

Hockton is a proven goalscorer, beginning his career at Milwall before enjoying spells at Stevenage Borough and Dover in their time at Conference level.

Trott has played for a number of clubs, including Gillingham, Grays Athletic and Stevenage Borough amongst a number of others, where he captained their side against Premiership side Newcastle United in the F.A Cup.

Margate are a place above Hendon who occupy the fourth possible relegation position in the Ryman Premier. Their last four home games (which includes the Boxing Day clash against Invicta) has seen them lose once, draw twice and win once – with a 2-1 victory against East Thurrock United yesterday, with goals from midfielders Hasim Deen and Lawrence Yiga.

Last season’s fixture between the two sides in the Kent Senior Cup was the semi-final back in April. This game will forever be remembered for the tragic death of much loved Invicta striker Paul Sykes.

Last season’s final was played in memory of him, between Margate and Dover. A dedicated professional, immensely popular on and off the field of play, Paul will fittingly be paid respects by a host of his former playing colleagues and opponents in a tribute match organised by BBC Radio Kent’s Mike Green.

This has been called, ‘The Syko Challenge’ and will be held at Hartsdown Park on April 30th 2006, with two teams managed by Chris Kinnear and present Dover manager Clive Walker. All proceeds from the game will go to the Sykes family, with Paul’s widow Carly being guest of honour on what will be a memorable day. The task of contacting players to play in the game is already underway and it is hoped that by the end of February preliminary squads can be announced.