Dover Athletic boss Andy Hessenthaler was thrilled to see returning striker Ricky Miller make an instant impact as their pre-season campaign got under way.
Miller struck twice in a 4-1 win over Ashford United at Crabble and Hessenthaler joked it should have been three. Saturday’s game was the first since January for Dover and first infront of the home fans since March 2020.
James Caton and Aaron Cosgrove also found the net for Whites and Hessenthaler reacted to Miller’s double when speaking to the club’s media.
He said: “He should have scored a hat-trick to be fair, he probably missed the easy one!
“It is great to have him in the place, he is so infectious, he loves this place, the fans love him. He wants to score goals, do well for the football club and help us get over this situation.
“He has been a proper livewire since he has been back and it’s great, the dressing room is good, he is so hungry to score goals and do well so we are well pleased with him.”
A day before the match Whites announced that former Hull City midfielder Ryan Hanson would be returning. Hessenthaler had already said he would love to bring him back after spending time on loan at the club last season. Hanson had been on trial at League 2 Oldham Athletic this summer.
The former Dover schoolboy once played youth football for the club before joining Crystal Palace. From there he joined Hull City in 2019.
Whites have announced seven new signings so far and also have a number of trialists training. They are set for another run out at Deal Town tonight (Tuesday).
Hessenthaler was pleased with their first outing of the summer and especially infront of their own fans.
He said: “It was fantastic and feels like real football again to have the fans back. It was nice and there were a good few there, it was always going to be a tough game at times, especially with the heat, it was a good work out and I am pleased.”
Deal return to Crabble on Saturday to face Folkestone Invicta (3pm kick off).