SATURDAY’S 2-0 defeat at Hayes & Yeading United means Dorchester Town’s fate this season could be all but sealed before they take to the pitch next in five days’ time.
Pat Cox and Dean Inman struck in the second half at the Kingfield Stadium to leave the Magpies, who have gone 10 matches without a win, needing a mathematical miracle now to stand any chance of staying in Skrill South.
The six clubs above Dorchester in the table play at least once between today and Satur-day, and if results elsewhere go against them there may be no way back.
The latest loss at Hayes & Yeading’s temporary home in Woking was, according to manager Phil Simkin, like so many others this season.
“We lost 2-0 but, again, we didn’t play badly,” he said. “We had a good spell early on in the game, but, as normal, we didn’t score.
“It was 0-0 at half-time but they ramped up the pressure in the second half and they nicked one.
“We changed our system to try and get back in it then they got a second, which is a pretty familiar story for us.
“As everyone knows, we have trouble scoring goals, so when we concede it’s difficult to come back.
“It has been our problem throughout the season. We had Brandon Goodship and then the two Torquay lads, but they all had to go back to their clubs.”
As expected, Dan Way (toe) and Jamie Gleeson (knee) were missing on Saturday, while Nick Crittenden also sat the game out with a foot complaint.
With no midweek match, Crittenden will have more time to recover ahead of the visit of Farnborough to the Avenue this coming Saturday.
However, Simkin reiterated his belief that Gleeson is probably going to sit out the Magpies’ five remaining league games of the campaign.
And, while it is still mathematically possible, Simkin knows he can’t give up on any chance, however slim it may be, of Dorchester beating the drop.
“It’s not looking good,” he added. “But while there is hope we will keep going.”