Hartlepool United v Sutton United
Saturday 3rd August 2019, 3pm
Sutton United have undergone some big changes over the summer and they could be a bit of an unknown quantity going in to the 2019/20 campaign.
Long-serving boss Paul Doswell tendered his resignation at the end of last term and Head Coach Matt Gray has stepped up to take the top job at Gander Green Lane.
Gray immediately set about revamping his squad and has added a host of new players as he looks to put his stamp on The U’s ahead of the weekend’s big kick-off.
Former Pools keeper Ben Dudzinski is among the incomings, while the capture of Bromley forward Omar Bugiel looks a shrewd bit of business for the South London outfit.
After finishing in the top half of the National League in each of the three seasons since their return, Gray will be hoping to repeat the trick and have them competing for a play-off place once again.
One To Watch
Craig Eastmond really does make things tick in the heart of the Sutton United midfield and the former Arsenal man is sure to be pivotal figure once again during the new campaign.
Still only 28, the talented star missed only seven National League games last season and finished as their top scorer in the competition, hitting the net seven times from midfield.
Head To Head
Saturday’s game will be only the fifth time the two sides have played each other having shared a division for the first time over the last couple of seasons
Pools are yet to get the better of The U’s in any of the four previous contests, though in fairness three of them have finished all-square.
Sutton did win on their last visit to The Vic last season – a 3-2 triumph that was clinched by Craig Eastmond’s goal eleven minutes from time.
Sutton United 2 Pools 2
Saturday 2nd March 2019
Sutton United: Worner, Bennett (Dobson 87), Thomas, Beckwith, Collins, Bolarinwa (Williams 77), Davis, Eastmond, Beautyman, Deacon, Toure (Ayunga 80).
Subs not used: Green, Bellikli.
Pools: Loach, Donaldson, Cunningham (Molyneux 66), Kerr, Anderson, Kitching, Noble, Featherstone, Hawkes, Kabamba, James.
Subs not used: Catterick, Amos, Hawkins, Muir.
On The Whistle
Steven Copeland will make his first visit as a referee to Victoria Park this weekend to oversee our meeting with Sutton United on the opening day.
You can listen to FREE online commentary on Pools TV in the company of Pools legend Brian Honour who will be alongside Mark Simpson in the press box on Saturday.
Our coverage starts from 2.50pm when Brian and Mark will set the scene from The Vic, guide you through all the team news and then describe the action as it unfolds.
Plus, fans who register with Mixlr will also be able to interact live with the commentary team and fellow Poolies in the Chat Room throughout our live broadcast.
Tickets for Saturday’s game are available in advance online or from the Club’s Ticket Office, while there will also be availability on the day of the game.
Sutton United 23/10