After a gut-wrenching game on Wednesday evening, Hartlepool United return to League Two action as Leyton Orient visit the Suit Direct Stadium. With the semi-final result still fresh in the minds of players, staff, and fans, everyone at the club will want to bounce back in the best way against the O’s.
Leyton Orient are currently 20th in League Two, four points clear of the drop-zone and 12 points behind Pools in 12th. They’re without a win in 12 league games, drawing twice and losing three times in their previous five fixtures. Former Bolton midfield Darren Pratley captains the side, led by Richie Wellens. Forward Aaron Drinan in the dangerman for the O’s, and he scored a hat-trick against Pools earlier in the season to condemn them to a heavy loss.
This will be the 54th meeting between the sides, with Pools winning 21 of the previous encounters. Orient have also won 21 times, with 11 games ending in a draw. The last time the sides met was in October 2021, which turned out to be Dave Challinor’s last game in charge of the side. Pools were soundly defeated 5-0, and before that, we were unbeaten in four games against the O’s, drawing twice and winning twice.
Graeme Lee has a full squad to choose from after Neill Byrne’s return from suspension on Wednesday and the cup-tied trio of Bryn Morris, Joe White, and Jake Hull once again available. A heavy fixture schedule may see changes made.
If you’re not heading to the Suit Direct on Saturday, full audio coverage is available via iFollow. Commentary starts shortly before kick-off with Alex Chandy and special guest, Adam Boyd. Purchase your audio pass here: