We turn our attentions to the weekend with a full and in-depth preview of our game against Crawley Town.
Hartlepool United v Crawley Town
Sky Bet League Two
Saturday 24th October 2015
The Story So Far
Crawley Town’s form has picked up in recent weeks after a difficult opening to the new campaign following their relegation from League One.
Mark Yates came in as the new manager after the departure of John Gregory and he has been allowed to bring in a handful of new players in a bid to stabilise the Broadfield Stadium outfit.
One win in their opening nine league games gave cause for concern but that gave way to renewed optimism following back-to-back wins over Leyton Orient and much-fancied Luton Town.
Midweek defeat at Morecambe brought that sequence to an end but they will still arrive at The Vic this weekend feeling better about themselves and confident they can make the long trip home with some reward.
One To Watch
Sonny Bradley is the only ever-present in the Crawley Town squad this season with the defender starting in every game so far.
Brought in for a nominal fee from Portsmouth last summer, the former Hull City trainee is looking to be an excellent signing and has carved out a regular spot in the heart of The Reds’ defence.
If Pools are to make good on their desire to be more ruthless in front of goal then they will first have to find a way past the committed 24-year-old.
Saturday 27th April 2013
Crawley Town 2 (Proctor 70, 89)
Hartlepool United (Monkhouse 75, 79)
Crawley Town: Jones, Sadler, Connolly, Walsh, Simpson, Hunt, Bulman (Sparrow 67), Adams (Hayes 67), Jones, Clarke, Proctor.
Subs not used: Maddison, Dumbaya, Essam, Torres, Alliyu.
Hartlepool United: Flinders, Austin, Collins, Baldwin (Horwood 71), Holden, Hartley, Humphreys (Hawkins 88), Walton, Monkhouse, Franks, James (Rutherford 82).
Subs not used: Rafferty, Rowbotham, Luscombe, Boagey.
Head To Head
Saturday’s game will be just the third-ever meeting between the two clubs and Pools have not managed to taste victory in either of the previous two.
A trip to Crawley on the final day of the 2012/13 campaign could have provided it as Andy Monkhouse’s double saw Pools leading only for them to concede an equaliser late on – much to the annoyance of the travelling Penguins!
Town had got the better of relegation-bound Pools earlier in the campaign when Hope Akpan’s first half goal was enough to hand them all three points at The Vic.
Ronnie Moore is still without the suspended Carl Magnay and the injured Harry Worley but Jordan Richards is getting closer to fitness after a back injury.
It will be Mark Heywood’s sixth game in charge of Pools this weekend when he is the man in the middle for our encounter with Crawley Town.
Last term he officiated our 0-0 draw with Portsmouth in September, while he previously oversaw our 1-0 defeat at Bury in November 2013.
It’s fair to say Pools have had little luck with Heywood as referee – that point against Pompey last season was the first we’d picked up in any game in which he’s been in charge.
Tickets for the weekend game are available now from the Victoria Park Ticket Office or on the turnstiles prior to kick-off.
Click here now for full information on buying tickets for games at The Vic.
Pools fans all over the world can listen to live commentary of Saturday’s game in the company of legend Brian Honour on Pools PlayerHD from 2.50pm.
Click here now for more information on accessing live commentary of every game on Pools PlayerHD.
Pools have been installed as 6/5 favourites for the three points on Saturday, with visitors Crawley priced at 23/10 for the win and a draw rated a 23/10 shot also with Sky Bet.