We turn our attentions to the Boxing Day action with a full and in-depth preview of our trip to Gateshead International Stadium.
Gateshead v Hartlepool United
Vanarama National League
Tuesday 26th December 2017
Gateshead International Stadium
Gateshead are adjusting well to life under new boss Steve Watson who arrived to take charge at the International Stadium in October following Neil Aspin’s departure to Port Vale.
An excellent run of four wins from five shortly after his appointment helped move The Tynesiders up six places in the National League table and in to the First Round of the FA Cup.
Victories have been a little harder to come by since then but a confidence-boosting FA Trophy triumph over Guiseley on Wednesday has set them back on the right path.
They’ve not quite managed to hit the heights of their Play-Off Final appearance of 2013/14 in recent years but Watson will be hoping his side can push on in to the top half during the second half of the current campaign.
Former Pools Youth Team forward Danny Johnson has become one of the main men for Gateshead since joining the club in the summer of 2015.
Following his release from The Vic, Johnson reinvented himself on the non-league scene with Guisborough Town before landing a move to Championship side Cardiff City.
The 24-year-old has netted six times in all competitions so far this term and has an impressive record of 39 goals in 103 appearances for Gateshead overall so will need to be well-marshalled on Boxing Day.
Head To Head
Whilst the teams haven’t met since the Tynesiders reformed, Pools have had many tussles with teams from Gateshead in past years – and not always come out on top.
The last meeting came back in February 1960 when Harry Clark scored the Pools goal in a 1-1 draw played at Gateshead’s Redheugh Park ground.
Earlier that season Pools had run out 3-0 winners on Gateshead’s last visit to The Vic thanks to goals from Clark, Jackie Smith and Frank McKenna.
All in all, the sides collided 57 times in all competitions, with Gateshead coming out on top in 27 of them and Pools’ victorious in only 17.
Andrew Miller will take charge of his second Pools game on Boxing Day when he’s the man in the middle for our trip to Gateshead.
His only other Pools fixture came back in October when he was on the whistle for our 1-1 draw with Tranmere Rovers at Victoria Park.
Now in to his second season on the National League’s list of referees, Miller’s last appointment came on Saturday when he oversaw the 1-1 draw between Guiseley and Aldershot Town.
Mark Simpson will be live on Pools PlayerHD from 2.50pm on Boxing Day to bring you full live commentary on our encounter with Gateshead.
So if you can’t get along to the International Stadium then make sure you join us on Pools PlayerHD to stay right up-to-date with the action.
Pools fans will be able to buy their tickets on the turnstiles prior to kick-off at the International Stadium on Boxing Day.