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06 January 2024 Venue The Suit Direct Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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Vanarama National League

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Match Previews

Match Preview: Pools begin 2024 against Oxford City

6 January 2024

Hartlepool United return to the Suit Direct Stadium as they take on Oxford City on Saturday (3pm kick-off). Caretaker manager Lennie Lawrence will take charge of Pools and is looking for a big performance from his side.

The Lowdown

After John Askey's departure, the experienced Lawrence has taken over a Pools side flirting with the relegation zone. Their form has seen them fall to 18th place, following an unsuccessful festive period with successive defeats to Oldham Athletic.

Oxford City are three places and four points behind Pools in their maiden National League season. Led by former Watford midfielder Ross Jenkins, the Hoops came away with a win and a loss against Dorking Wanderers during the Christmas period.

The History

The sides have met just once previously, earlier this season. Despite Joe Grey's early goal, Oxford ran out 5-2 winners in a high-scoring affair at the RAW Charging Stadium.

Team News

Luke Hendrie and Tom Crawford are both in contention for the fixture, while Edon Pruti can also be selected after returning to the club from his loan spell.

Alex Lacey and Mani Dieseruvwe remain sidelined, while Josh Umerah is awaiting the results of a scan on his knee.

How to Follow

Ticketing information can be found here.

If you can't join us at the Suit Direct Stadium, you can follow the action via National League TV here. Match passes cost £9.50 and grant you access to all streamed fixtures on the given day. Saturday's game is available both domestically and internationally.

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Match Reports

Match Report: Pools return to winning ways at home

6 January 2024

Caretaker manager Lennie Lawrence guided Pools to a 2-1 win over Oxford City, with goals from Tom Crawford and Joe Grey.

Lawrence named several changes to the Pools line-up as Luke Hendrie and Crawford returned from injury, while Anthony Mancini made his first start since the end of August. 
And it was Mancini to impact proceedings early. The midfielder darted forward and set Callum Cooke, who fired narrowly wide following a deflection. 
Pools looked strong in the opening stages, and a possession-based move in the eight minute resulted in Nicky Featherstone driving a low effort into keeper Jack Bycroft. 
Moments later, Pools were denied by the woodwork. Grey received the ball at his feet inside the six-yard box, before turning and smashing the upright. 
David Ferguson created yet another opportunity for the hosts, after the left-back drove into the Oxford half and released Mancini who so nearly found the top right corner. 
On the half-hour mark, a remarkable piece of play around the Oxford penalty area resulted in Featherstone releasing Ferguson but nobody could get onto the end of his low cross. 
After Mancini and Grey had big chances at the start of the second half, it would be Crawford to open the scoring on 55 minutes. 
Mancini brought the ball forward and following an initial Dave from Bycroft, Crawford was there to slot home the rebound and put Pools ahead. 
Grey then made it two with 61 on the clock. Mancini delightfully turned in the penalty area against three defenders before Grey poked home for his sixth of the season. 
Josh Parker hit the post for Oxford from a dangerous free-kick on 77 minutes. And seconds later, the Hoops equalised as Seydil Toure scrambled home a corner. 
But Pools held onto the three points, and almost found another in the dying stages through Grey and Callum Cooke. 
Pools: Dixon, Stephenson, Hendrie, Onariase, Ferguson, Wallace, Featherstone, Crawford, Cooke (Hancox 88), Mancini (Hastie 66), Grey
Subs (not used): Jameson, Pruti, Paterson
Goals: Crawford (55), Grey (61)
Oxford City goals: Toure (77)

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