Reserves Beaten After 5 Goal Thriller At St James'
Newcastle Reserves v Hartlepool Reserves
Report from St James' Park
Hartlepool Reserves were edged out by their Newcastle United counterparts in the Totesport League at St James' Park tonight.
Pools started with a strong side which featured Ben Clark, Jon-Andre Fredriksen, Leon McSweeney, Jonny Rowell and Armann Bjornsson. It was Pools who had the better of the opening exchanges and Bjornsson headed a golden chance over the bar from 6 yards out.
Bjornsson was involved again as good play from David Foley set up the Icelandic international who forced a point blank save from the Newcastle keeper, the ball fell to Leon McSweeney who smashed an effort off the bar before the home side got the ball away.
Pools took the lead soon after when a ball zipped in from Pools' right was met by Newcastle defender Matthew Grieve who smashed the ball into his own net.
The home side were soon level after a bit of dodgy defending from Jon-Andre Fredriksen, playing at left back tonight, let Phil Airey through. He pulled the ball back to Peter Lovenkrands who gave Cook no chance in the Hartlepool goal and made it 1-1.
After a good start the home side forced their way back into the match but the two sides went into the break level in front over a decent crowd at St James'.
HT: Newcastle Reserves 1 Hartlepool Reserves 1
It should have been advantage Pools early in the second half as Leon McSweeney was fed through but his effort was well saved by Toon keeper Alnwick to keep the scores even.
They didn't stay even for long, however, as a slick move put Pools ahead. Leon McSweeney broke down the left and dragged the ball back for Billy Greulich who slotted home.
But it was less than a minute before the scores were level again as Pools defence pushed up they were caught on the break, Phil Airey received the ball in the box and a cool finish made it 2-2.
It was the defence to blame once again as Pools fell behind for the first time in the match, a corner from the left found Phil Airey unmarked and the striker was able to head home with ease at the Gallowgate End to put the Geordies in front.
Despite looking the much sharper side in the first half, Pools tired as the game went on and the home side were able to hold on for the win.
FT: Newcastle Reserves 3 Hartlepool Reserves 2
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Newcastle: Alnwick, Leadbitter, Tozer, Grieve, Folan, Pancrate (Taylor 80), Donaldson, LuaLua, Danquah (Adjei 61), Lovenkrands (Newton 80), Airey
Subs not used: Robinson, Henderson
Pools: Cook, Power, Cherel, Clark, Fredriksen, McSweeney, Rowell, Foley, Bjornsson (Mason 87), Greulich
Subs not used: Sharples, Thomas