We turn our attentions to Tuesday evening's action with a full and in-depth preview of Chester's visit to Victoria Park.
Hartlepool United v Chester
Vanarama National League
Tuesday 15th August 2017, 7.45pm
Re-formed in 2010, Chester FC fans have enjoyed a real roller-coaster ride in the seven years since during which they have tasted promotion three times to return to the top tier of non-league football.
After a reprieve from relegation at the end of 2012/13, The Blues have held their own in the National League and are many people’s tips as dark horses for a charge on the play-offs this term.
Boss Jon McCarthy – who played one game for Pools in 1988 – has opted for quality over quantity in terms of his squad-building this summer and it’s hoped that can help them challenge nearer the top after last season’s 19th place finish.
There was a false start for Chester at the start of the campaign when their opening day game at Solihill Moors was postponed over safety issues but they remain unbeaten as they head to The Vic having drawn both outings so far – against AFC Fylde and FC Halifax Town.
One To Watch
Chester fans were delighted to see front man Ross Hannah return to the Deva Stadium during the summer after one season away plying his trade for Barrow.
The prolific striker fired 23 goals in 42 games for The Blues during 2015/16 and it will be hoped he can find the net regularly again this term as they look to fill the void left to James Alabi’s move to Tranmere Rovers.
Hannah has proved throughout his career that he certainly knows where the goal is and if Pools can keep him quiet on Tuesday night then it will go a long way to ensuring a positive result.
Head To Head
There have been 101 meetings between Pools and Chester over the years, though this will be the first since The Blues were forced to reform in 2010.
The most recent was in League Two back in March 2007 when promotion-bound Pools ran out 3-0 winners at Victoria Park thanks to goals from Richard Barker, Andy Monkhouse and Ben Clark.
Chester haven’t usually enjoyed their trips to The Vic – you have to go back to January 1971 for the last time they came away with a win on Pools turf.
Glen Hart will take on his first Pools game on Tuesday night and his second in the National League after stepping up from being an Assistant Referee in recent years.
His first assignment came at The International Stadium last Tuesday when he was on the whistle for Gateshead’s 1-0 win over Guiseley.
Hart had been working in the EFL as an Assistant Referee prior to this season, with experience running the line across all divisions as well as the FA Cup and League Cup.
Pools legend Brian Honour will join Mark Simpson in the commentary box for live coverage of Tuesday evening’s game on Pools PlayerHD.
You can join the lads from 7.35pm when they go live from The Vic to set the scene ahead of the National League outing against Chester.
Fans will be able to buy tickets on the day of the game from the Main Ticket Office on Clarence Road or from our two Matchday Ticket Offices.
There will be no cash turnstiles for Pools fans but we have introduced a method by which supporters can buy tickets on their cards directly at the gate.