Dulwich Hamlet 2-1 Margate - I think we're starting to show ourselves to be a club that's trying to push to the next level, says Dulwich Hamlet boss Gavin Rose

Saturday 28th November 2015
Dulwich Hamlet 2 – 1 Margate
Location Champion Hill Stadium, Dog Kennel Hill, Edgar Kail Way, East Dulwich, London SE22 8BD
Kickoff 28/11/2015 15:00

The FA Trophy Third Qualifying Round
Saturday 28th November 2015
Stephen McCartney reports from Champion Hill Stadium

DULWICH HAMLET boss Gavin Rose says knocking Margate out of The FA Trophy will make it a day to remember.

The Hamlet reached the First Round for the first time in 10 years after beating the club that defeated them in the Ryman Premier League Play-Off Semi-Finals in May.

Margate have not impressed in the Vanarama National League South this season and arrived in south-east London sitting in the bottom six with 18 points from as many games, while Dulwich Hamlet top the Ryman Premier League with 42 points from 22 games.

Margate were the dominant side during the first half and deservedly opened the scoring on the half-hour mark through Freddie Ladapo’s ninth goal of the campaign.

But Dulwich Hamlet finished the game strong and their attacking football was a joy to watch.

Man-of-the-match, central defender Ethan Pinnock capped off an excellent performance with the equaliser, scoring his fifth goal of the season.

Margate were hanging on and Dulwich Hamlet sealed a memorable victory through Ashley Carew’s 12th goal of the season, from the penalty spot, with 46:46 showing on the clock.

“I thought today was another tough game against Margate. We’ve enjoyed a few over the last couple of years and I felt that today was much the same,” said Rose, who was watching the game beside the press box as he served the last of his three match touchline ban.

“Good crowd, both teams playing to win, of course and I thought it made for a good game.

“Obviously really happy with our second half performance in particular. I thought we came on really strong and deserved to go on and win.”

Rose was full of praise for his club’s supporters in the crowd of 1,479 – the club’s third highest crowd of the season.

“We’re becoming a bit used to that now, that’s becoming an average crowd on a good day with us so to be fair it’s not anything the boys’ not used to so we’re happy with that.

“I’m really grateful for the support because not only have we’ve got the numbers but they’re also got good support as well.”

Rose is delighted he can join Junior Kadi and Kevin James on the touchline after completing his ban at the final whistle.

“Sometimes, some ways it’s good because you know there’s only so much you can do but you can maybe see the game from a different perspective as well.  I suppose every manager would prefer to be in the dug-out and I’m no different. The ban’s over now, it’s the last one, last game and we’ve done the job, I’m happy.”

Margate boss Terry Brown said: “Really disappointed.  I think the difference between the two sides was, if I look at their bench they’ve got decent players they can put on that can change games and I’ve got nothing to put on.

“We’re threadbare at the moment, starting three players who have not played any football for at least a month and Lewis Taylor hasn’t played for two months.

“I needed to take Lewis Taylor off. I needed to take the forwards off and I needed some fresh blood. What I had on the bench was a centre half and a left-back and to be fair I made those changes to shore us up and that backfired as well.

“A brilliant first half performance, until we ran out of legs and second half I’m thinking fully deserved win for Dulwich.”

Dulwich Hamlet created the first chance of the game with only 43 seconds on the clock.

Left-back Jordan Brown threw the ball and Damian Scannell – who was playing in behind lone striker Ryan Moss – cut into the penalty area but his left-footed deflected just past the foot of the far post.

Rose said: “On another day, you probably expect him to score that to be fair, but he done really well to roll Kane (Wills) and get his shot off.”

Margate’s opening chance swiftly followed when Ladapo swept the ball out to the left and Nathan Green’s low centre was flicked past the near post by midfielder Danny Green.

Dulwich Hamlet goalkeeper Phil Wilson – making his 201st appearance for the club - kept the home side in the game as Margate turned the screw.

Ladapo cut inside and laid the ball off to Christian Jolley, whose right-footed first time drive from 20-yard forced Wilson to dive to his right to push the ball towards safety.

Just 19 seconds later, Margate should have taken the lead.

Jolley’s angled drive screamed over Wilson’s right shoulder and bounced off the top of the far post and dropped down into Danny Green’s path, his first time right-footed shot towards the corner forced Wilson to dive to his left to make another great save.

Rose said: “I felt Phil done well today, he kept the goal really well today. There were some vital saves, a few at their feet today, he was very brave and that was no surprise to us.”

Brown said: “That’s the story of our season so far! We batter teams and don’t put the game to bed.

“I wouldn’t mind a pound for every goalkeeper that’s made four or five saves against us.”

Dulwich Hamlet went close following their first corner of the game after 11 minutes.

Carew swung in a deep corner from the left and former Bromley midfielder Danny Waldren was off-balanced and unmarked but he guided his header past the right-hand post from 10-yards.

But other than that chance, the first half belonged to Margate, but they lacked the quality to put the game to bed.

Danny Green played the ball down the left to Jolley and as Wilson advanced and committed himself, a poor touch from the Margate striker on the by-line saw the ball run out of play.

Margate were to be denied by a goal-line clearance from Brown when Danny Green swung in their first corner on the left and Charlie Wassmer came up from the back to power his free header across goal.

Margate were to be thwarted by Wilson again as the first half reached the halfway point.

Jolley threw the ball into Danny Green’s feet, who turned and cracked a right-footed drive towards the top far corner, but the Dulwich Hamlet keeper dived to his left to palm the ball away.

Margate finally got the breakthrough that their dominance deserved, taking the lead with 29 minutes and 6 seconds on the clock.

Jolley dinked the ball out to Lewis Taylor out on the right and he played the ball inside to Ladapo, who cut inside and from the right-hand side of the penalty area rolled his shot across Wilson from 12-yards, the ball trickling into the bottom far corner of the net.

Brown was full of praise for his goalscorer, saying, “We had to drop Freddie into midfield today and he’s still scored a goal! Freddie’s the only one of my attacking players who gets a decent ratio of goals so I’ve got no issues with him. I’m looking for goals from other areas.”

Brown added: “Smashing goal and at that stage we were playing well and dominating the game, but dominating the game’s nothing unless you’re putting it to bed.

“You have to be going in 2-0 and 3-0 and I knew that it was not going to be enough here second half.

“I’d like to have made changes at half-time if I could, but that weren’t possible.”

Rose added: “I think Phil’s expecting a harder shot to be honest with you. He’s probably set for a harder shot, more of a blast. It looks a soft goal from us to concede to be honest.”

Rose admitted Margate deserved their lead, adding, “yes, probably. They looked a bit more on the front foot. They looked like they were causing us more problems, so yes.”

The goal seemed to be a wake-up call for Dulwich Hamlet and they started the press with left-winger Albert Jarrett whipping in some delicious crosses.

Pinnock found the former Bromley winger, who sped down the wing before whipping in a great cross into the Margate penalty area.

Former Margate striker Ryan Moss leapt in between Wassmer and Jake Goodwin and powered his header just over the crossbar from 12-yards.

“He’s getting fitter and stronger each game and he’ll be an asset for the team,” Rose said of Jarrett, who played for 68 minutes.

Reflecting on Moss’s headed chances, Rose said: “He had a few today. He had a few close shaves with headers today.  The cross from Albert Jarrett, it was a little bit behind him, he’s got his head on it.

“I thought he was a threat. I thought he ran in behind. He kept their back four on their toes all game and as the game went on I felt he was a threat with cross balls.”

Brown knows all about the threat that Moss poses, having helped the Kent coast club to promotion last season.

“I think if they stick a ball in the box in normal play, the only one who will get on the end of it is Ryan Moss,” said Brown.

“I didn’t see that as being any threat to us first half.  Second half, was different all together.”

Margate’s third corner of the game saw Danny Green swing the ball in from the left and once again Wassmer was given space to loop his towering header towards the roof of the net, which was plucked out of the air by Wilson.

Margate got their tactics spot on as they stifled Dulwich Hamlet’s trademark attacking threat down the wings – during the first half.

Brown said: “We won the ball in midfield. Second half, they won every tackle and every second ball in midfield therefore they’re winning the ball and they’re able to pass it out to the wide boys, which is their threat and first half they didn’t have enough of the ball to do that. We won the battle, second half they won it.”

Rose added: “I thought we got on the ball on the floor a little bit more after half-an-hour really well so I was really happy of the boys. 

“I felt that in the second half we had the wind in our favour and I felt if we started well, we’d be tough opposition for them and I thought we was.”

But the longer the first half went on, Dulwich Hamlet got stronger and started to create some decent chances.

Brown fed Jarrett down the left and he whipped in a deep cross but Scannell rose to direct his header on to the top of the roof of the net from 10-yards at the far post.

Margate won a free-kick on the left-hand corner of the penalty area but Lewis Taylor, who took the kick from the wrong place, blazed his right-footed effort high over the bar.

But Dulwich Hamlet enjoyed a good spell of possession towards the end of the first half and should have equalised on the stroke of half-time.

Carew and Waldren were two holding midfielders who sat in front of the Dulwich back four.

Waldren sprayed the ball out wide to right-back Osei Sankofa, who whipped in a deep cross towards the far post but an unmarked Jarrett sliced his shot over the bar from 12-yards.

Both managers were asked their thoughts at the break.

Rose said: “I felt we grew into it as the half went on, showed a bit more confidence and belief in ourselves and I wanted to continue in that fashion but also to keep the ball in their half a bit longer, which I felt we did as the game went on.”

Brown said: “We knew we’d be in problems second half so it was basically go out trying to keep it nice and tight. Don’t gamble too much and looked to hit them on the break if we could.  To hit teams on the break that’s when you need some fresh legs, that’s when you need boys full of energy.

“My front two front runners haven’t played for yonks. It was going up and coming back, going up and coming back and if you can’t hold it and can’t link play with my midfield players, we were second best second half.”

The wind got stronger during the second half, which was a more cagier affair than the first half entertainment.

Rose added: “Yes, that’s to be expected. No team wants to give anything away so that’s to be expected as well you know.”

Margate created the first chance inside the opening five minutes when Danny Green swept the ball out to left-back Nathan Green, who whipped in a first time cross but Jolley placed his first time shot past the right-hand post from 15-yards.

There was pinball inside the Dulwich Hamlet penalty area after Ladapo was freed down the right and his low centre was not finished off by either Danny Green or Jamie Taylor as Wilson pounced on the loose ball.

But the 56th minute introduction of lightening quick left-winger Rhys Murrell-Williamson added more of an attacking threat for Dulwich Hamlet.

Rose said: “We made a bold decision. Osei (Sankofa) had a little knee problem and we decided to put Nyren (Clunis) at right-back and Rhys behind the left and it meant we had more attacking players on the pitch. That can go one way or another, of course, it seemed to favour us today.”

Carew cut back the home side’s third corner to the substitute, who drilled his shot screaming over the top of the far post from inside the penalty area on the left-hand side.

But Dulwich Hamlet wasted a great chance to equalise on the hour-mark.

Brown played the ball into Waldren and Carew clipped the ball towards the edge of the Margate penalty area but Scannell ran onto the ball and guided his header straight at Nikki Bull.

“He’s had a few headed chances, he’s not renowned for headed goals but he had a few headed chances of late and probably could’ve done better with that as well,” said Rose.

Margate went close shortly afterwards when Lewis Taylor laid the ball off to Danny Green, who ran at the Dulwich Hamlet defence and played the ball into Jamie Taylor, who drilled his shot into the foot of the side netting as Matt Drage closed him down.

But Dulwich Hamlet started to play with attacking flair and Margate had no answer.

Substitute Dan Sweeney rolled the ball out wide to Nyren Clunis – who dropped to right-back when Murrell-Williams came on as a left-winger and Scannell played a more familiar role out wide on the right.

Clunis burst forward and unleashed a right-footed angled drive which forced Bull to palm away high to his left at his near post.

Dulwich Hamlet deservedly equalised with 74 minutes on the clock and Pinnock deserved to get on the scoresheet with his composed, man-of-the-match performance at the back.

Carew floated a free-kick from the right touchline into the Margate penalty area and the away side failed to clear their lines properly and Pinnock poked his first time shot under Bull to score from eight-yards.

Rose said: “He’s growing as a player and as a person. He’s been here for a long time and now his performance levels have become so consistent. If he helps us to go up this year it would be great but we’re probably looking at him moving on from the club into professional football.

“Obviously when we scored the goal we were just about to make the sub with Dean McDonald. That was the last throw of the dice and when we scored we were almost going to contemplate keeping it steady but then we decided that we felt we could score again to be honest with you.

“We threw Dean on and we put even more attacking players on with Dean, Ryan Moss, Nyran and Daniel Sweeney.  We knew that if we kept on the front foot we’d probably get another chance or create something.”

Brown said: “They were pressing and we had a number of corners to defend and we defended the goal abysmally. Even that’s gone through Bully’s legs!

“I haven’t got a complaint about that, they deserved to win because they were having the pressure and we were blocking and we were making saves.

“If you allow a team to dominate in midfield and at the back, which they did second half, then they’re going to create chances and this Dulwich side wins more games than it loses.”

This set the tone for Dulwich Hamlet to press Margate, who were hanging on to dear life and hoping for a replay at Hartsdown Park on Tuesday night.

Brown was forced into making a couple of late substitutions as Brett Johnson and Sam Rents came on but his choices from the bench were limited.

Jordan Brown whipped in a cross from the left into Margate’s box and Moss directed his free header across goal and past the far post.

Margate keeper Bull got down swiftly low to his right to prevent substitute Dan Sweeney drilling his right-footed shot into the bottom left-hand corner from 30-yards as Dulwich Hamlet continued to turn the screw.

“Nikki’s a very good keeper and he’s more gutted than anybody else losing today but he’s not our problem anymore than the defence was in general.  Midfield and upfront, I’ve got to sort out,” added the Margate boss.

Murrell-Johnson then whipped in a cross from the left and Moss powered his diving header under pressure past the left-hand post.

Margate weathered the storm and they should have won the game with 45:19 on the clock.

Ladapo released Jolley, who beat the offside trap, but the former Grimsby Town striker lost composure when he only had Wilson to beat inside the box, the Dulwich Hamlet keeper making a big save at the striker’s feet.

Brown knew it was a big chance to snatch victory.

“Jamie Taylor had one chance and Christian Jolley broke through at the end there and could’ve done better but these are two boys that ain’t played for ages so all you can ask as a manager is to go out and give 100%. All my players gave 100% today. We wanted to progress in this trophy and we didn’t have enough in the squad to progress.”

Rose added: “I thought that was probably the turning point, obviously to the result because he could so easily over hit it, over run it and could so easily scored.

“We’ve gone up the other end and with our attack, Nyren’s been brought down for the penalty.”

But the big moment came when Clunis burst forward from his full-back position and cut into the Margate penalty area.

Rents fell over at Clunis’ feet and the ball hit his hand as he sat on the floor and referee Carl Brook made a big decision by pointing to the spot.

The whole stadium fell into expectant silence just before Carew stepped up to plant his right-footed penalty into the bottom left-hand corner, before the passionate home fans burst into raptures and cheered their team off the pitch following their great win.

“He’s been accustomed to that,” said Rose.

“Not only has he scored a lot of penalties, it’s always decisive penalties as well so I suppose once you do that a few times you become used to that.”

“Sam Rents’ has fallen over and the ball’s hit his hands. If he’s meant to fall over and handball it, then I’ll be surprised,” added Brown.

“I didn’t think it was a penalty. I think he’s fallen over and it hit him on the hand. The boy checked, he done him in as much as his footing went from under him.

“If I’m saying the ref’s cost us the game, no, they didn’t cost the game. What’s cost the game, we weren’t strong enough in the second half.”

These are the games where lower league clubs challenging for promotion can use a game like this as a benchmark as to how they would cope in the league above, should they claim promotion at the end of the season.

On today’s showing, Dulwich Hamlet will certainly compete in the Vanarama National League South next season.

“On Tuesday night we lost to Harrow. I thought we’re starting to show ourselves to be a club that’s trying to push to the next level,” said Rose.

“Of course, we’ve got a lot of work to do in our league. We’ve got some really good teams in our league. We’re trying to pit our wits against teams like Margate, who have done really well in the league above, so that’s what we’re trying to establish.

“I think even if we didn’t even get the result today, I think we showed that we was competitive, at least and that means that we’re not too far away so I was happy with that at the minimum but obviously winning the game is great but it’s neither here or there. It could’ve gone either way, we know that.”

Rose hopes for a home draw in the First Round but has made it a day to remember for the south east London outfit.

“There isn’t a preference to be honest with you. I suppose a home draw is nice, it’s a good occasion.  A home draw would be great.

“It’s a day where everyone remembers even today is a day everyone will remember.

“It’s good what we’re doing now. It’s a new stage for Dulwich Hamlet and we’re happy with what we’ve done.”

Brown admitted Champion Hill is a tough place to come to nowadays.

“It’s just a brilliant place to come to even though I’ve lost here all the time. It’s a place you want to come to,” said the Margate boss.

“They’ve got brilliant supporters who get behind the team. I know the management team here get their team playing great football. They always have good little wingers, good midfielders, good players.

“I think it was a good game. It must have been very entertaining for spectators. I’m just disappointed that we didn’t have another chance to play them.”

Dulwich Hamlet: Phil Wilson, Osei Sankofa (Rhys Murrell-Williams 56), Jordan Brown, Danny Waldren, Matt Drage, Ethan Pinnock, Nyren Clunis, Ashley Carew, Ryan Moss, Damian Scannell (Dean McDonald 77), Albert Jarrett (Dan Sweeney 68).
Subs: Jack Dixon, Mitchell Nelson

Goals: Ethan Pinnock 74, Ashley Carew 90 (penalty)

Booked: Ethan Pinnock 40

Margate: Nikki Bull, Glenn Wilson, Nathan Green, Kane Wills, Jake Goodwin, Charlie Wassmer, Lewis Taylor (Sam Rents 84), Danny Green, Freddie Ladapo (Brett Johnson 81), Jamie Taylor, Christian Jolley.
Sub: Jamie Stuart

Goal: Freddie Ladapo 30

Attendance: 1,479
Referee: Mr Carl Brook (Hastings, East Sussex)
Assistants: Mr Leigh Crowhurst (Uckfield, East Sussex) & Mr Jack Owen (Sevenoaks)