Here's our preview of the action as Pools prepare for the weekend trip to York
Maidenhead United v Pools
Saturday 8th December 2018, 3pm
After finishing a very creditable 12th during their first season in the National League, Maidenhead United have found their second season at this level a little bit more of a struggle.
The Magpies recovered from a slow opening month to pick up five wins from eight at the back end of August and through September but that form has dropped off again since then.
A recent run of six consecutive defeats was brought to an end when they pulled off a brilliant 1-0 win at Sutton United a fortnight ago to give them room for optimism.
However, a sequence of four successive home games has begun with only a draw against Ebbsfleet United and a loss to Harrogate Town so they’ll be hoping to make it third time lucky against Pools.
Alan Devonshire’s men are currently 20th in the National League table but will hope to climb further away from the bottom four with a good result this weekend.
Adrian Clifton has proved a key component of The Magpies’ midfield this term, highlighted by the fact that he’s scored six of their 23 National League goals so far.
The 29-year-old re-joined Maidenhead last summer following a two-year spell with Havant & Waterlooville and he’s hit the net 14 times since.
His goalscoring was a big factor in their upturn in form during the latter part of August and in to September when he was on the scoresheet in four games in succession.
Head To Head
Saturday’s game will be the fourth competitive encounter between the sides and the previous three have all ended 2-1 – with Pools on the winning end of the scoreline just once.
This weekend offers Pools the opportunity to chalk up their first double of the season after goals from Luke James and Nicky Featherstone were enough to defeat The Magpies in August.
However, Pools were beaten on their first visit to York Road last term when the BT Sport cameras saw a Dave Tarpey double earn all the points for the hosts despite Padraig Amond’s late penalty.
Alan Dale will take charge of his second Pools game when he’s the man in the middle for Saturday’s trip to Maidenhead United.
The official was on the whistle for our first game of the season at Maidstone United when Pools kicked-off the new campaign with a 1-1 draw in Kent.
In to his second season on the National League’s list of referees, Dale has presided over 11 fixtures this term with his most recent appointment coming at the end of last month when he saw Dover Athletic win at Boreham Wood.
Fans all over the world will be able to access live commentary of Saturday afternoon’s game at Maidenhead with Mark Simpson by logging-on to Pools PlayerHD from 2.50pm.
Pools fans can order online in advance for Saturday’s game against Maidenhead United or buy on the cash turnstiles at York Road prior to kick-off.
The bookies are struggling to separate the sides this weekend with both Pools and Maidenhead United rated a 6/4 shot for three points and the draw priced up at 23/10 with our friends at Sky Bet.