City are back to league action this Saturday 23rd after a successful cup outing. Also, Twerton Park finally plays host to a men’s first team game for the first time in three weeks and it coincides with Community Day! More on that later.
Dover’s young manager Mitch Brundle, who turns 29 in December, will be looking to improve on last season’s narrow escape from relegation. Having been demoted from the National League in the 2021/22 season with a points deduction due to financial difficulties following the COVID-19 pandemic, Whites fans would have expected them to bounce back in the lower division. That was not the case, as Athletic could only secure safety on the final day by goal difference.
As of now, the Whites sit 23rd on just six points from nine matches. To add to their poor form, they seem to be losing players hand over fist. An impressive summer saw Dover bring in 14 new players and yet four of them have already been shown the door. On the other hand, City can pride themselves on the fact that the core squad from last season have stayed on for another year. For once, Jerry Gill and his team haven’t had to scramble around in the summer to rebuild the squad.
If the Romans can pick up a win or draw this Saturday 23rd in front of the home fans, City will remain unbeaten in eight games in all competitions. You’d have to look back to right before the pandemic to find the last time City were in such good form. It was a Christmas to remember in 2019, as the Stripes didn’t lose a single game from mid-November to mid-January, going 12 matches unbeaten across the National League South and the FA Trophy.
While City’s league record against the Whites in recent years has been troublesome, cup ties have usually seen the Romans come out on top. In 2015, City fought hard for an FA Trophy Quarter-Final victory over higher division Athletic which needed a replay to separate the two sides after a 3-3 draw at Crabble. Dover had also been knocked out of the FA Cup just four years prior, this time when the Romans sat a league above. League results tell a different story, with City’s last win against the Whites occurring in September 2003, when both clubs competed in the Southern League Premier Division. The Conference South was created a year later and both sides missed out in its inaugural season.
In addition to a potentially excellent match, Saturday 23rd has a lot to offer on Community Day. Ice cream, face painting, beat-the-goalie and so much more to get involved with will be fun for all the family. Set ticket prices are available here, but you can give as much as you can on the gate before the game.
Who – Bath City vs Dover Athletic
When – Saturday 23rd September, KO 3pm
Where – Twerton Park