Pools Hit Back Twice For Point

Peter Kioso, Yeovil Town v Hartlepool United

Pools twice came from behind to claim a creditable point during an ill-tempered contest with Yeovil Town at Huish Park on Saturday.

The hosts were in front midway through the first half when Matthew Worthington stabbed home from close range but Peter Kioso levelled things with a bullet header four minutes later.

The Glovers were back ahead just before the break with a scrappy goal from Charlie Lee but the game swung early in the second half when Rhys Murphy was shown a red card following an off the ball collision with Myles Anderson.

Gus Mafuta levelled with a superb header 18 minutes from time and, after that, Pools looked the more likely winners but the home side dug in to hold on for a point.

Dave Challinor made one change to his starting eleven, handing a debut to new signing Aidan Keena after the international clearance came through on his move from Hearts.

After a scrappy start to the game, Pools began to enjoy the better of the opening exchanges though all they had to show for it was a header from Kioso which looped harmlessly wide.

Luke Wilkinson glanced a header just off-target at the other end as the hosts slowly started to come in to the game, before Charlie Lee saw a powerful volley from twenty-five yards deflected just past the post.

The breakthrough came on 24 minutes when a long ball freed Rhys Murphy down the left flank and he drove to the byline before clipping a ball across goal where the arriving Matthew Worthington prodded it in to the net.

However, Pools were back on level terms just four minutes later when Ryan Donaldson swung an inch-perfect free-kick in to the area from the left and Kioso met it with a bullet header in to the bottom left-hand corner of the net.

It looked as though Pools would go in at half-time level but the most scrappy of goals helped Yeovil back in front four minutes before the break as a long throw-in from the left wasn’t fully cleared and Lee was able to force it in to the net from close range.

Pools came mightily close to levelling within three minutes of the restart when Kioso got to the byline and pulled the ball back for Gavan Holohan. However, the midfielder couldn’t sort his feet out quickly enough and the chance evaporated.

The game swung in Pools favour on 54 minutes when Murphy kicked out at Myles Anderson off the ball and the referee was well positioned to spot the infringement so produced a straight red card.

Challinor sensed an opportunity and replaced Anderson with Luke Molyneux to give Pools a greater attacking edge and they were level on 72 minutes when Mafuta arrived on the end of Featherstone’s perfect cross to plant a header in to the bottom corner.

Pools then set about finding the winner and Molyneux almost got it when the ball fell loose to him on the right side of the penalty area but he sent his effort too high.

Donaldson also had a half chance but his low drive through a crowded box was blocked away from goal and Mark Shelton’s follow-up shot was deflected just wide of the upright.

There was a big opening for Mark Kitching in injury-time when Molyneux strangled a shot across goal to the full-back but his well-struck shot was blocked by keeper Ted Kann.

Full Time: Yeovil Town 2 Pools 2

Yeovil Town: Cann, Collins, Dickinson, Hipployte, Hutton, Lee (Smith 75), Murphy, Richards (Duffus 60), Skendi, Wilkinson, Worthington.
Subs not used: Bradbury, Rogers, Behcet.

Booked: Collins, Hippolyte, Skendi

Sent-off: Murphy

Pools: Beeney, Donaldson, Kioso, Liddle, Anderson (Molyneux 63), Kitching, Mafuta, Featherstone (Kennedy 79), Shelton, Holohan, Keena (Muir 85).
Subs not used: Killip, Cunningham.

Booked: Featherstone, Keena

Attendance: 2,716 (107 Pools)

Referee: Martin Woods