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Match Reports

Pools Earn Point At Woking

30 September 2017

Ryan Donaldson Woking FC
Ryan Donaldson celebrates his goal at Woking

Pools picked up a useful point on the road at Woking but could have had more after Ryan Donaldson scored his first goal for the Club at the Kingfield Stadium on Saturday.

The winger nodded Pools in front just after the midway point of the first half only for the hosts to snatch a leveller in stoppage time at the end of the opening 45 minutes.

Craig Harrison opted to make one change to his starting line-up, with James Thorne handed his debut after joining the Club on Thursday; Rhys Oates dropped to the bench.

Pools enjoyed a good amount of possession, knocking the ball around confidently and probing to try and find an opening against the Woking backline.

However, the game’s first real chance Regan Charles-Cook slipped through on goal but Scott Loach did well to get down to his low shot and palm it away, with Louis Laing able to complete the clearance.

The referee turned down a couple of soft penalty appeals from Woking as the home side looked to press and Pools cleared forward for Thorne to chase but the forward couldn’t generate enough power on his shot after turning inside.

Donaldson came close to opening the scoring for Pools moments later when Nicky Featherstone’s lobbed through ball set him in on goal but keeper Nathan Baxter was out quickly to smother the winger’s shot.

Pools opened the scoring on 26 minutes when a quick throw-in found Jonathan Franks on the left of the box; he let the ball roll across him and attempted a volley on goal but sliced his effort across the box where Donaldson gleefully nodded home his first goal for the Club.

Featherstone then engineered a chance for himself on the edge of the box, cutting on to his left foot before letting fly with a low shot which was gathered by Baxter.

Loach had to be alert again at the other end seconds later as Woking worked the ball out to the left for Charles-Cook who got his shot away but was denied by the feet of the Pools keeper.

However, Loach could do nothing in first half injury time when Pools couldn’t fully clear a corner and when the ball was lifted back in to the box it fell kindly for Jamie Philpot who rammed it in to the net.

Pools had to contend with a couple of early corners and a series of baffling refereeing decisions at the start of the second half but gradually they started to get some rhythm back and pass the ball around well.

Devante Rodney and Rhys Oates replaced Thorne and Donaldson just after the hour mark and Rodney almost made an instant impact; the front man seized on a short header from the defender, getting there before the keeper and lobbing it over his head only to see it clip the post on its way wide.

The substitute was at it again minutes later when he drove at his man on the right edge of the box but his dangerous cross was cleared away at the front post and Liam Donnelly nodded over from the resultant corner.

Pools were beginning to look the more likely and some good football presented Franks with the ball on the left corner of the area but his powerful strike was well held by Baxter.

Suddenly Woking were afforded an opportunity at the other end as Pools dallied in possession inside their own half; thankfully Chez Isaac’s shot was deflected wide and the corner was cleared.

Minutes later it was Woking’s turn to give up possession cheaply and Franks was given space to let fly from twenty-five yards but his shot took a wicked deflected and dropped just wide of the post.

Loach was forced in to another good save in stoppage time at the end when Bobson Bawling drove to the righty byline before stinging the Pools keeper’s gloves with a rasping drive.

There was more drama to come right at the death when Bawling squared the ball back across the area to Effiong, whose powerful shot cannoned off the cross bar and Pools escaped.

It proved to the final meaningful action in the game as Pools returned home with a share of the spoils in what was Woking’s first draw of the season.

Full Time: Woking 1 Pools 1

Woking: Baxter, Young, Staunton, Wynter, Ralph, Ferdinand, Isaac, Carter (Bawling 73), Charles-Cook, Ward, Philpot (Effiong 65).
Subs not used: Mason, Saraiva, Appau.

Booked: Ralph (69)

Pools: Loach, Magnay, Laing, Donnelly, Deverdics, Featherstone, Woods, Hawkins, Donaldson (Oates 62), Thorne (Rodney 62), Franks.
Subs not used: Harrison, Adams, Munns.

Booked: Laing (70)

Attendance: 2,479 (238 Poolies)

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