Another Game of Two Halves

report by RUNNING MONKEY at the ex-Vic

Pools 3 Morecambe 2 (League 2) Friday December 30th 2016

They call it a crucial three points, but we all know it means a lot more than that as this was a game where we could show how we play football and in the first half we did just that. 

We all pray for an early goal at every game and I guess Amond was even more surprised when his shot left ex-Manure keeper Roche for dead with a super volley to open the scoring in front of the Town End after the visitors gave us the advantage of kicking down the bank in the first half.

The second goal looked like a gift as the whole team and the crowd screamed for a penalty after they all saw a defender handle a cross into the box. As we know from experience they do not all go our way and the lady running the line down the Millhouse side was unsure, but the Ditchburn Poolie claimed it was the best bit of “flag waving” he had seen at the Vic for some time. There looked to be a bit of a squabble over who was taking it but Paynter claimed the ball and duly despatched it into the net.

Pools were flying, turning it on against a side that looked to be playing like we did on Monday against Blackpool, sloppy, could not hold onto the ball and lacking in direction. This must have been one of the first times that Hignett had got his selection right enough for the fans, The benefit of playing two up front means you score goals and both the front runners Amond and Paynter managed a goal even if one was a penalty.
"This must have been one of the first times that Hignett had got his selection right enough for the fans"

It was great to see Featherstone net his first goal for the club which came from one of the, if not the best ball through you will ever see from a Pools player as Woods laid it on a plate for Featherstone to stroll through the defence and volley the ball into the net to make it three nil to the Hartlepools.

As well as we were playing and pounding the visitors, they stuck to the task and an early substitution for them looked to be paying dividends as they pressed us right up the half time whistle.

The second half proved a big disappointment to the fans. Once again the half-time break seemed to work against us as the visitors started stringing passes together and now it was Pools' turn to look a little ragged yet again. From where I stood their goal looked like a cracking strike but those with better eyesight than mine claimed it was a deflection that beat Carson, but they all count.

We lost Paynter just before the hour mark and the visitors sensed they could possibly get something from this game and set about Pools, who lost their shape and their ability to pass the ball or hold it for any length of time, and under pressure they scored again making it a very nervous end to the game for the Pools fans.

We really need to learn how to play the second half the same way we played the first. Ok, a win is a win, but it could have been so different on the night, which only exposed our weakness when at half time the fans were talking about another Grimsby result.

The Ditchburn Poolie was unsettled tonight and rambled on a bit about an old uncle. Apparently he was disappointed that his uncle Scrooge had sold his soul and joined the plebs.

For once the Town End rumour mill had got it right as Toto has moved on for an undisclosed fee, He will be a “BIG” miss.