DORCHESTER Town suffered a resounding 4-1 defeat by promotion-chasing Salisbury, but what were the main talking points?


SALISBURY came into the seventh tier of English football this season as a newly-promoted side but looked anything but as they cantered to a 4-1 victory.

Steve Claridge’s men exuded class from the off, keeping hold of possession with ease and winning it back even more easily.

The Whites looked assured, confident and professional while forcing Dorchester into hurried clearances, mistakes and closing off their threats.

Keep in mind this was possibly Dorchester’s most aggressive line-up of the season with attacking jewels Ben Seymour, Aaron Rodriguez, Tom Blair and Antonio Diaz all deployed in a 4-2-3-1 formation.

All four players were superbly kept quiet by Salisbury, who were far too strong all over the pitch. In the end, a casual supporter could have been forgiven for thinking Dorchester were the promoted side.

And yet there is an 11-place gap between the teams as Salisbury target promotion – seemingly via the play-offs – and Dorchester look to avoid relegation.


ALTHOUGH disappointing, Dorchester’s defeat did relatively little harm in their survival bid.

The Magpies slipped from 14th to 15th and remain six points ahead of Gosport in the final relegation spot after Boro lost 3-0 at home to Merthyr.

Of Dorchester’s near rivals, only Tiverton and Wimborne won, while Walton Casuals appear to have the toughest three-game run-in of all the relegation candidates.

Casuals must visit Salisbury and Merthyr either side of entertaining sixth-placed Kings Langley and, while occupying the last safe position of 19th, look favourites to go down at present with Gosport holding games against bottom two Frome and Staines up their sleeve.


CALLUM Brooks sustained his heaviest loss as Dorchester manager but the Magpies’ number one, despite admitting his frustration post-match, will likely remain positive.

His mantra of focusing on each game in isolation has been fruitful so far and in all likelihood the Magpies are just one win from safety.

If results go Dorchester’s way on Saturday, Brooks’ men could even be safe with two games to spare.


A RARE shining light in Dorchester’s display was the positive impact of midfielder Dom Panesar-Dower, a 68th-minute substitute.

The diminutive midfielder exhibited his trademark energy and willingness to run, harrying a strong Salisbury midfield into errors and scampering around the pitch to jolt Dorchester into life.

Panesar-Dower has often been used as a substitute this season but if he continues to deliver performances like that on a more consistent basis, he could force his way into the starting XI more consistently.


HOME form has long been a source of pain for Dorchester this season and the Magpies’ faithful endured another torrid afternoon at the Clayson.

Dorchester were beaten by three goals at home for the fifth time in this campaign and possess the second-worst home record in the division with just 17 points from 20 games – including 11 losses.

Only bottom side Staines have poorer statistics in front of their own fans and, should the Magpies beat the drop, Brooks will surely be looking to remedy this problem next season.