A Touch of the Two Harolds


Former Prime Minister Harold Wilson once famously said, ‘A week’s a long time in politics.’ His penultimate predecessor, Harold Macmillan, described the most important thing in politics as ‘events’. Well, over the past few days, both quotations can be twisted to Pools.

First, we had the televised game at Harrogate Town when Pools were taken to the cleaners. It was an abject performance which left us all wondering whether a relegation fight was on the cards again. What also left us wondering was who was in charge? Both Richard Money and Craig Hignett were in the dugout but this was resolved a few days later when Craig Hignett was placed in charge of first team affairs with Money undertaking an undefined role. As we go to print there’s suggestions that Money will be on his way out completely.

And so to Saturday’s game against Braintree. I had a sense of foreboding as too often in the past we’d made clubs in the bottom four play like Barcelona. We stuck to the task and the performance raised morale. Three loan signings we made – was this Richard Money? – certainly made a big contribution to the victory. Hopefully, we’ll get stability in defence with Michael Raynes who seems to be adopting a leadership role. As soon as he signed, I got in touch with a pal of mine who is a season ticket holder at Crewe. His verdict was that Raynes is a very powerful header of the ball with plenty of experience - but with a habit of giving goals away. Of course, plenty has been said about Nicke Kabamba and a goal in each of the league games shows his worth. Let’s hope he can be of some help to Luke James as he lays the ball off. And I’m sure Luke Molyneux will also make a good contribution. For me, Peter Kioso turned in a fantastic performance against Braintree and he would always be first on my team sheet. It did look as though Kioso might be out of favour with Money but thankfully Craig Hignett has restored him to the starting line up rather than having him idling his time away on the bench.
"Hopefully, we’ll get stability in defence with Michael Raynes who seems to be adopting a leadership role"

The scariest moment, of course, in the Braintree match came in added time when the opposition were awarded a corner. Bloody hell, was my reaction as their goalie went up; they’re going to equalise or get a penalty amongst all the chaos. Thankfully that didn’t happen and we breathed again. There was some talk of those shysters at FIFA outlawing goalkeepers coming up in the dying minutes. Lay off, it can be exciting or nervy depending on who you support. FIFA have taken enough fun out of the game so belt up.

The other talking point about the Braintee game was the appearance of our first lady referee. Rebecca Welch certainly put in a very competent performance and two reactions from Poolies were typical : “We’ll have her every week” and “I hardly noticed her which shows how good she was”. Bless the lady!

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