Writer: Owen H
Date:Friday April 30 2010
01/05/2010 - 3pm
Hartlepool United's last home game, becomes a relegation six pointer as both sides look to secure League 1 safety.
Home Team Focus:
Hartlepool have been in their best form of the season over the last month. A run of 4 wins in six games has almost seen them reach safety in the League 1 relegation battle, however all the hard work could be for nothing if they do not get a result against Exeter on Saturday. Chris Turner and his men are still waiting to hear from the F.A regarding the ineligible player incident during the Brighton game. Speculation over the punishment has ranged from a small fine, additional suspension of the player involved, a point`s deduction or even all three. One thing that is clear is that a win for Hartlepool in the last home game, of a long and tiresome season, could see them guarantee safety and make the outcome of the F.A hearing next week redundant.
Chris Turner this week has made his feelings clear about the end of season run-in and he wants his team to sign of in style in front of the home fans.
''It's important to win the last home game and send people away happy. Recent home games have been good and we want more like that. Consistency has been a problem all season, we want to end on a solid footing. If we get the job done on Saturday, it opens up a few possibilities for the last game of the season. We don't have to win our last two games (to be safe), but we want to of course. Next week`s situation will be spoken about after events take place. We are six clear of Tranmere and want to go nine.'' Chris Turner (HUFC)
Away Team Focus:
Exeter are in a similar position as Hartlepool United, win and it could guarantee another season of League 1 football, although this would only be possible if Tranmere fail to beat high flying Millwall. Exeter are currently just two points above Tranmere, who occupy the last relegation spot. It has been an impressive first season in League 1 for Exeter City. After promotion last year Tisdale rang the changes and built a new squad with a massive 15 players coming into the club and 13 going out, the gamble to change his playing staff so drastically looks like it is going to pay off, however Tisdale his given up trying to work out all the possible endings to the season.
'There are so many variables and really we've given up trying to work it out. We just know if we win both our games we are going to be ok and that is our starting point I suppose. Nobody can predict what is going to happen in the next two weeks, nobody. There are so many variations of results and we just have to concentrate on winning the game ourselves. I'm looking forward to any game at this level, it has been a fantastic season so far and it is sometimes hard to actually enjoy it while you are doing it. We will be making every effort to enjoy it and of course every effort to win the game and secure our status. The result here back in the Park in the autumn has no bearing here, I think it holds little clue as to what is going to happen this week.' Paul Tisdale (Exeter City)
Hartlepool Team News:
hris Turner almost has a fully fit squad to choose from, with only Dennis Behan not available for selection. Ritchie Humphreys is back to full fitness after recovering from a virus picked up mid-week. Turner will likely field what he feels is his strongest side as a home win against Exeter guarantees safety for Hartlepool United. With several Championship sides chasing the signature of the, out of contract, Sunderland loanee Roy O`Donovan, Hartlepool fans could be watching him play his last home game for the club.
Roy O`Donovan only joined Hartlepool in February but there is no doubt that he has had a massive hand in pushing Hartlepool United towards League 1 safety. The Irish man has scored 9 goals in just 13 games since joining the club and potentially could end up as the clubs top scorer as he currently sits just 2 goals off top scorer Andy Monkhouse (11 goals).
James Dunne will return to the midfield for the Grecians visit to the North East, although the influential Barry Corr is rated as doubtful and will undergo a late fitness test to make the traveling squad. On-loan Rotherham striker Ryan Taylor is on stand-by to replace Corr, while Stuart Fleetwood could also feature after scoring a hat-trick midweek in the reserves.
25 year old Ryan Harley is only in his second full season of professional football after being signed from Blue Square South side Weston-Super-Mare in December 2007. The midfielder has had an outstanding season in midfield and leads the club scoring and assist charts with 9 goals and 10 assists. Harley is a centre piece of the Grecians attacking threat and they will look to get him on the ball as often as possible.
Saturdays game between Hartlepool and Exeter will be the 70th meeting between to two teams, all of which have come in the League. At Victoria Park Hartlepool have a great record against the visitors racking up an impressive 15 wins, 13 draws and just 6 defeats. The last time these two sides met at Victoria Park was in 2003 and current Pools players Adam Boyd and Ritchie Humphreys secured the points in a 2-1 win.
Hartlepool United 2 - 1 Exeter Hartlepool have been in great form in recent weeks at home and there is no reason to assume that will change with the visit of Exeter City. Although Exeter have only lost once in the last two months they have drawn 80% of those games and it is hard to imagine that they can managing anything else on their longest away day of the season. However with so much at stake and a win for either side could see them avoid relegation, this will surely be an all guns blazing 6 pointer.
Hartlepool face yet another trip to the capital as they face Brentford in the last game of the season.
Date:Friday April 30 2010
Colin Cooper Appointed Hartlepool Boss (Friday May 24 2013)
John Hughes and Micky Barron Sacked (Thursday May 9 2013)
Evan Horwood Heads Hartlepool Exit List (Tuesday May 7 2013)
Hartlepool End Season With Crawley Draw (Saturday April 27 2013)
Solid Draw In Hartlepool's Final Home Game (Saturday April 20 2013)
Hartlepool Record Shock Away Win (Saturday April 13 2013)
Monkhouse Double Lifts Pools Off The Bottom (Saturday April 6 2013)
Not So Good Friday For Hartlepool (Friday March 29 2013)
Another Blank Leaves Hartlepool Rock Bottom (Saturday March 23 2013)
Limp Defeat Leaves Pools Facing League 2 (Tuesday March 19 2013)
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