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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

26 December 2018 Venue Gateshead International Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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Match Previews

Preview: Gateshead v Pools

25 December 2018

Gateshead v Hartlepool United Funkee Monkey
Gateshead v Hartlepool United

We turn our attentions to the Boxing Day action with a full and in-depth preview of the National League trip to The International Stadium.

Gateshead v Pools
National League
Wednesday 26th December, 3pm
The International Stadium

In Opposition
Gateshead have emerged as one of the dark horses in the National League promotion race this season under the fine stewardship of former Newcastle United, Aston Villa and Everton star Steve Watson.

A tumultuous summer saw the Club finally passed in to new ownership after a prolonged takeover saga which seemed to put them on the back foot in terms of recruitment for 2018/19.

However, Watson pulled together a young and dynamic squad which picked up confidence on the back of three wins in a row at the start of the season and has rarely looked back since.

They currently lie seventh in the table following their impressive 3-2 win at Maidstone United on Saturday and will be hoping to further bolster their play-off credentials with a solid return over Christmas.

Star Player
Luke Armstrong has proved a regular supply of goals for Gateshead since joining the club on loan from Middlesbrough at the start of the season.

The 22-year-old has hit the net nine times in 18 games so far for The Tyensiders but they face a nervous wait to see if it’s possible to extend his loan spell beyond the New Year.

There’s little doubt that Armstrong will want to sign-off in style if he is indeed to be recalled by Boro so Pools will need to keep a close eye on him on Boxing Day to ensure he doesn’t make it in to double figures at their expense.

Head To Head
The Boxing Day game will be the 56th competitive meeting with Gateshead in its various forms over the years, stretching back to a first encounter in 1928 which was won 5-0 by The Tynesiders.

Both of last season’s fixtures between the sided ended in 2-2 draws in what was the first time they’d met competitively since 1960 in a game which also finished all-square.

Last Meeting
Saturday 1st January 2018
Pools 2 (Watson 7, 64) Gateshead 2 (Peniket 41, York 79)

Pools: Loach, Donnelly, Watson, Ledger, Franks, Woods, Deverdics, Hawkins, Cassidy (Simpson 87), Oates (Munns 71), Rodney (Adeloye 85).
Subs not used: Catterick, Laing.

Gateshead: Hanford, Vassell, Barrow, Byrne, Tinkler, McLaughlin, Penn (Johnson 65), Hannant, Peniket, Burrow, Preston (York 75).
Subs not used: Montgomery, Fyfield, Williams.

Andrew Miller will be the man in charge for the game at The International Stadium, just as he was in this same fixture last Boxing Day when he showed a red card to Blair Adams.

It will be the fifth time in total that Miller has overseen Pools in action, the most recent occasion was for our 3-2 home defeat to Sutton United in October, while he also took charge when we drew with Tranmere last October and beat Leyton Orient in April.

In to his third season on the National League’s list of referees, he has overseen 12 games in the league so far this term and was last on the whistle for AFC Fylde’s 2-1 win over Boreham Wood at the end of November.

Live Coverage
If you can’t get along to the game on Boxing Day then join Mark Simpson on Pools PlayerHD for full live online commentary from 2.50pm.

Click here now for more information on joining Pools PlayerHD for the rest of the current season for the knockdown price of just £24.99.

Pools fans are now able to buy tickets on cash turnstiles at The International Stadium.

Click here for full information on tickets for Boxing Day.

Gateshead have been installed as big 17/20 favourites for three points on Boxing Day, with Pools good value at a price of 3/1 and the bookies rating the chance of a draw at 9/4.

Click here to check out the latest odds and bet boosts right now with our friends at Sky Bet.

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Match Reports

Boxing Day Defeat For Pools

26 December 2018

Niko Muir Mark Fletcher (Shutter Press)
Niko Muir in Boxing Day action for Pools

Liam Noble scored one penalty and missed another as Pools slipped to an agonising Boxing Day defeat to Gateshead at The International Stadium.

Having fallen two goals behind to The Tynesiders in the first half, midfielder Noble dragged Richard Money’s men back in to contention when he converted from the spot  87 minutes.

However, when presented with another chance from twelve yards in injury time the Club’s top scorer hit the outside of the post and the hosts held on to secure three points.

New boss Money opted to make three changes to his starting eleven as he continued his assessment of the squad at his disposal.

Kenton Richardson came back in at right-back, with Carl Magnay nudged in to a holding midfield role, Conor Newton returning in a more advanced role and Lewis Hawkins handed his first Pools appearance of the season following his return from a loan spell at York City.

It was Pools who began the game by seeing more of the ball, knocking it around well at time without really creating many inroads against a well-drilled Gateshead backline.

The home side’s top scorer sent out a warning shot on ten minutes when he barged his way on to the end of Luke Molyneux’s whipped free-kick from the right but he nodded it over the bar.

However, it was a warning Pools didn’t heed and Armstrong notched his tenth of the season three minutes later when he did well to run down the right side of the area before unleashing a powerful low drive which squirmed underneath Scott Loach and in to the net for 1-0.

Ryan Donaldson had a half-chance to bring Pools level when he found space at the other end but drilled over before Robbie Tinkler came within inches of making it 2-0 with a rasping drive from thirty yards which crashed back off the underside of Loach’s bar.

Good work in midfield from Hawkins and Newton saw Niko Muir sent away down the right of the penalty area and his low drive across goal was brilliantly turned round the post by Aynsley Pears in the Gateshead goal.

Pools kept up the pressure with a couple of corners but were then caught on the break on 33 minutes when a searching ball found Molyneux on the left of the area. He turned inside to feed Scott Barrow and when his shot was blocked by Harvey Rodgers, it ricocheted beyond Loach and perfectly for Armstrong who controlled excellently before slotting it in to the gaping net.

Pools could have grabbed one back almost immediately when Newton’s low ball in from the left was turned against the cross bar by Muir from close range, while Pears did well to get down to his right and smother Hawkins from the rebound.

A driving run from Donaldson produced the last noteworthy moment of a forgettable first half for Pools but, after reaching the edge of the area, he saw his shot blocked by a defender.

It was a quiet start to the second half but Pools continued to enjoy the greater share of possession, though Molyneux had the first real opening only to curl a shot over after driving infield from the right.

The introduction of Luke James perked up the Pools attack and when he flicked on Richardson’s cross in to the box, Newton first saw a low shot blocked before Noble hit the keeper with a follow-up from the edge of the area.

Midfield star Noble was one of the driving forces as Pools looked for a route back in to the game and he fired another shot straight at Pears after a powerful run to the edge of the area.

Magnay nodded a Noble free-kick straight at Pears, while Jon Mellish could have made game safe at the other end only to nod Molyneux’s precise right-wing corner wide at the front post.

James came mightily close to prodding Pools back in to it when he brilliantly spun on the ball in the box but Pears bravely smothered his shot and the home side survived the scare.

However, James was proving a difficulty for Gateshead to handle and minutes later he came even closer to finding the net when he fizzed a ferocious shot on goal from twenty-five yards which Pears did well to finger-tip round the post.

Pools were given further encouragement when Gateshead midfielder Tom White was shown a straight red card for an overly-zealous challenge on Muir and the visitors quickly took advantage.

It was no surprise when James was at the heart of the moment which dragged Money’s men back in to contention when he ran on to the ball on the right of the area before being felled by Pears – Noble did the rest with a calm spot-kick, sending the keeper the wrong way.

Incredibly, as stoppage time began, Kitching was fouled in the box and Referee Andrew Miller pointed to the spot again. Noble went the same way but this time got his angles wrong and his low shot touched the base of the left-hand post as it went wide.

Pools were stunned but kept on going and Josh Hawkes came within a whisker of netting a leveller when he drilled an powerful shot which just cleared the bar as the home fans breathed a sigh of relief.

Incredibly, there was still time for another heart-in-mouth moment for the hosts when Richardson’s cross-shot from the right deceived Pears and looked to be heading in, only for it to kiss the bar on its way across and out for a throw-in.

Full Time: Gateshead 2 Pools 1

Attendance: 2,678 (1477 Pools)

Gateshead: Pears, Tinkler, Kerr, Williamson, Mellish, Barrow (O’Donnell 51), White, Hunter, Molyneux, Armstrong, Boden (Rigg 65).
Subs Not Used: Foden, Thomson, Devitt.

Booked: Tinkler.

Sent-Off: White.

Pools: Loach, Richardson, Rodgers, Davies, Kitching, Magnay, Noble, Hawkins (James 50), Newton (Hawkes 81), Donaldson, Muir.
Subs Not Used: Anderson, Featherstone, McLaughin.

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Ticket News

Pools Fans Can Pay On Gate At Gateshead

24 December 2018

Gateshead International Stadium Rex Features
Gateshead International Stadium

Here's an update on ticket arrangements for our National League visit to Gateshead on Boxing Day.

Gateshead have now confirmed that there will be cash turnstiles available to Pools fans for the Boxing Day game at The International Stadium.

The Tynesiders initially advised us that the fixture was all-ticket but they have now altered that stance and said supporters wishing to be at the game can now pay on the gate.

Adults - £15
Concessions - £8
Students - £5
Under 18s - £5
Under 12s - Free

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