Win over Dorking keeps play-off hopes alive for St Albans City

Shaun Jeffers' scores the winner for St Albans City against Dorking Wanderers.

Shaun Jeffers' scores the winner for St Albans City against Dorking Wanderers. - Credit: JIM STANDEN

There was plenty of pleasure being felt by St Albans City manager Ian Allinson after their win over Dorking Wanderers - but it was mixed with a pinch of regret.

Shaun Jeffers got the only goal 19 minutes from time to give Saints a 1-0 win at Clarence Park and keep their National League South play-off hopes alive.

But they are still four points adrift of Havant & Waterlooville with just two games to go and the City boss knows that they could have done better over the last few weeks, certainly against teams in the bottom half of the standings.

He said: "We know we have to perform to a really high level against teams like Dorking and Dartford and we’ve done that. 

"But it is the in between bits that have disappointed me. We haven’t performed in those games to the level we have [against Dorking]. 

"We have to look at everything in trying to improve us as a team, trying to improve us on matchday and trying to improve us when we play those teams that are not in the top four. 

"We had to work extremely hard but Shaun has had five of the best chances in the game and he is probably disappointed to not have the match ball again. 

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"He knows that but he was like the old Shaun Jeffers. He was sharp, he was bright, he was in and around the box and he was causing their centre-halves lots of troubles. 

"We’ve missed that. 

"The defenders were outstanding too, Michael Johnson’s handling was great, and it was just one of those games that when they come together, you are really pleased." 

The result also ended Dorking's title aspirations, handing the shiny pot and automatic promotion to Maidstone United.

Allinson though was only too well aware about the threat they could have posed his side had they not held their discipline.

He said: "You have to be careful you don’t open yourself up too much as they are a good side and they will punish you. 

"We had to be patient. 

"The ball retention in the second half was better and we got up the pitch further, which allowed us to get the goal."