We turn our attentions to the weekend action with a full and in-depth preview of Pools trip to The Silverlake Stadium.
Eastleigh v Hartlepool United
Vanarama National League
Saturday 27th January 2018, 3pm
The Silverlake Stadium
After winning just once since November, Eastleigh have suddenly burst in to life at the start of 2018 and come in to Saturday’s game on the back of three consecutive victories.
Andy Hessenthaler's men are unbeaten in their last six National League outings and have also found the net 10 times during the previous three so approach the weekend with confidence.
Last Saturday they came from 2-1 down to win 3-2 at Eastleigh with Ryan Broom scoring a spectacular goal to seal the triumph on his debut after joining the club on loan from Bristol Rovers.
Ben Williamson is the Spitfires’ top scorer this season after helping himself to nine goals so far during 2017/18.
The former Port Vale front man has previous against Pools having netted a hat-trick in the Valiants’ 6-2 League Cup win over us at Vale Park back in August 2014.
A powerful and aggressive player, Williamson certainly knows where the goal is and if the Pools defenders give him too much space on Saturday then he will punish them.
Head To Head
This weekend will represent only the second-ever meeting between the two sides after the first came at Victoria Park back in September.
Goals from Callum Howe and Mark Yeates were enough to hand The Spitfires all three points on their first visit to The Vic despite a late consolation from Jack Munns.
Richard Hulme will be in charge of his third Pools game this weekend when he’s the man on the whistle for our trip to Eastleigh.
He also oversaw our 1-1 draw at Woking in September as well as the 4-0 defeat to Dover Athletic during which he showed a red card to Nicky Deverdics that was later rescinded.
Hulme is in his first season on the National League list of referees and his most recent appointment came in Maidenhead United’s 1-0 win over Solihull Moors on Boxing Day.
We’ll be linking up with our friends at BBC Tees to provide live commentary to Pools PlayerHD subscribers all around the world.
Pools fans can make a saving by ordering ticket in advance, while there will also be availability on the turnstiles prior to kick-off on the day.