Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: St. Catharines, Canada
Sat. November 29, 2025
Barclays Premier League
Wolves (4-5-4, 17 points, 11th) vs. Dover (12-0-0, 36 points, 1st)
Molineux, Wolverhampton, England
Betting Odds: Wolves: 13-2 Draw: 11-4 Dover: 2-5 (Favourites)
Past Meetings: 12W 4D 1L
We’ve had great success against Wolves over the years but need to be very careful, as they were red-hot to start this year and even were able to hold us to a 3-3 draw last year at our home stadium. After a super start, they’ve gone four games without a win and have dropped into mid-table but the ever dangerous striker Guy Luckett continues to roll, with 15 goals in 15 matches. These guys have major injury issues right now, with no less than six roster players on the sidelines. They were relatively quiet during the transfer season, bringing in four players but they did spend £7.25 million, £3 million of which was spent on Barnsley striker Aaron Renton. He hasn’t even started a game yet.
Despite a mid-week game in Spain, our players are raring to go and I only make two changes to the winning lineup, bringing Paul Moses back in for Andy Broomes and also bringing in Arsene Bamba for Mads Pedersen. We have a League Cup quarterfinal coming up on Tuesday and will be able to go with second teamers for that contest.
Dover: 4-4-2 Control
GK - I. Wilke
D - Renato Gaucho, C. Contreras, R. Hamon, S. Loucif
M - A. Bamba, B. Raab, Jose, G. Bolis
S - P. Moses, Chiquinho
Bench - Rafinha, R. Lopez, M. Mutesa, E. Harvey, N. Cairney, M. Pedersen, A. Broomes
Flat 4-4-2 for Wolves and they have Stefano Zeno up front with Luckett. Bas Hofstra is their keeper. There are signs of overconfidence today coming from Jose and Benedikt Raab - not good. I tell the team I expect a big win today.
29’ - We’re not playing well to start and missing some key chances but finally break through on a Benedikt Raab corner that’s headed in by Claudio Contreras. DOVER GOAL 1-0
45’ - Wolves build up play nicely and they touch a pass into the area to winger Antonio Oses, who eludes an attempted tackle from Raab and shoots past Wilke and it’s IN. Oh my. WOLVES GOAL 1-1
HALFTIME - They score on their only shot of the half and we have 54% of possession and a 12-1 (3-1 on target) shot advantage but this is unacceptable. I let loose on them in the room at half time.
50’ - That team talk doesn’t have the desired effect, as a few players are now “playing nervously”. Get over it! Anyway, we work the ball around off a throw in and Paul Moses sends a pass into the middle to Jose. He dribbles toward the area and lets a low, hard blast go that eludes Hofstra and is in! Great shot by Jose! DOVER GOAL 2-1
59’ - Incredible. Wolves get three corner kicks in a row and on the third one, the cross is sent in and Guy Luckett is able to boot it home. This is something else… WOLVES GOAL 2-2
Wolves fall into a defensive shell, going with a 4-1-4-1 formation.
69’ - I bring in Andy Broomes and take out Chiquinho.
81’ - Looks like we need a miracle here. Gianluca Bolis comes off and in comes Rodolfo Lopez.
90’+1 - Rayane Hamon is hurt and can’t continue. It just keeps getting better. In comes Mwemere Mutesa. DOVER INJURY: Rayane Hamon
There’s three minutes of extra time but it gets dragged out to SEVEN MINUTES, as Wolves pull every stall tactic known to man and the ref seems to realize it. That said, we don’t threaten and the whistle blows. TERRIBLE.
Wolves 2 - 2 Dover
Goals - Claudio Contreras (8.2), Jose (7.6)
Assists - Benedikt Raab (7.1), Paul Moses (6.8)
Man of the Match - Claudio Contreras
Other Dover Notables - Arsene Bamba (7.0)
Attendance - 27,801
We ended up with 53% of the ball and a 19-6 (7-3 on target) shot advantage. Needless to say, I’m pissed but just tell the players the performance wasn’t good enough. We were overconfident and my half time team talk should have been softer but this was unacceptable. We’re still undefeated in Premier League play but there goes the winning streak.
-- And the news gets worse, as we find out that Rayane Hamon will miss close to seven weeks with a broken collarbone. Lovely. Mwemere Mutesa will get the promotion. DOVER INJURY: Rayane Hamon - Broken Collarbone (6-7 weeks)
-- In other action, Chelsea get back into the top seven with a win over Middlesbrough and Sunderland upset Liverpool 1-0. The Manchester derby is a beauty, as City and United draw 3-3.
BARCLAYS PREMIER LEAGUE - STANDINGS
(ALL TEAMS HAVE PLAYED 14 GAMES UNLESS NOTED)
1. Dover - 37 points (after 13 games)
2. Manchester City - 33 points
3. Manchester United - 31 points
4. Liverpool - 27 points
5. Tottenham - 24 points (after 13 games)
6. Sunderland - 22 points
7. Chelsea - 21 points
Dover U18 Update
-- The ridiculous run continues with an 8-1 demolition of AFC Wimbledon. Bakary Kone scores FIVE and Fernando Estrada scores THREE. They are incredible! Stephen Brannigan nabs two assists while Juan Jose Culebras notches three assists.
-- Business is PICKING UP, as we have SIX Premier League games this month! We face Huddersfield (home), Sheffield Wednesday (away), Manchester City (away), Sunderland (home), Everton (home) and Arsenal (away). Holy CRAP! That is ridiculous and we have four games during an eleven day stretch at the end of the month. We also have a League Cup quarterfinal against QPR here at home and our final Champions League Group stage match against Maribor, also here at home. That’s eight games in December.
-- We get positive training reports for Rodolfo Lopez, Salim Loucif and Manuel Lugo, along with U18 players Bakary Kone, Marcus Sowter and Ralf Kramer. Negative reports come in for U18 players Domenico Fracassetti and Giuseppe Forti.
-- Sheffield Wednesday striker Steve Pates wins Player of the Month honours after scoring NINE GOALS in five games! Yeah, that will do it!
-- Arsenal keeper Mark Walsh wins Young Player of the Month honours.
-- Everton manager Nigel Adkins wins manager of the month after winning four of their five games in November.
FA Cup - 3rd Round Draw
-- We are defending FA Cup champions and enter the competition in the third round. Our name is drawn out #1 and we have a tough start, having to face fellow Premier League side Newcastle.
Board Confidence Update
-- No change here. Board is delighted with our stature increase and still slightly disappointed with the departure of Andrea Rocca.
-- We lost £7.35 million in November, with much of it due to a number of contract extensions that carried significant bonuses.
Dover Injury Update
-- Rayane Hamon (broken collarbone) is our only major injury right now. Danny Hope, a reserves centre half back, is out for a couple weeks and two of our loaned out players are hurt as well - Emerson and Felix Hernandez.
-- We are in the quarterfinals of the League Cup and host Championship side Queens Park Rangers.