MATCH REPORT | Hartlepool United 4-2 Wrexham

Macclesfield Town
Posted:Mon 26 Aug 2019

For the second time over the Bank Holiday Weekend, the Reds let slip a first half lead and with it all three points up in the north-east of England.

To compound matters, centre half Jake Lawlor was red carded on the hour, which could see him suspended for a further four games, after a previous sending off against Halifax already this campaign.

Former trialist Gime Toure had levelled matter before the break after Akil Wright’s deflected effort had opened the scoring.

After the break it was a different story as Hartlepool scored three times before hour, two from the impressive Liam Noble and second for Toure.

Bobby Grant had pulled matters back to 3-2 before they scored a fourth, but the sending off ended what little hope the 311 travelling fans had of witnessing a comeback.

Manager Bryan Hughes rung the changes for our second game in three days, as the team made the lengthy trip north

The afternoon opened with left back Fraser Kerr having a low shot diverted behind for a Hartlepool corner. Liam Noble delivered it and centre half Michael Raynes was not far off target with his header.

The game then got a little lively with hefty challenges coming in from either side, as referee Richardson was kept busy making sure things didn’t boil over.

A quickly taken free by the home side after nine minutes, allowed Peter Kioso to find some space in the right and his first-time effort was well blocked by Christian Dibble.

More bad news for the Reds came on 13 minutes when JJ Hooper sent over a left-wing cross and then immediately signalled to the bench that he felt a muscle pull. After lengthy treatment he was helped to the sidelines as Leighton McIntosh was quickly readily to take his place.

Wrexham’s first serious attack came six minutes later, when the ball bounced around the United box, but as Devonte Redmond waited for it to sit for him, he had to take it early as defenders closed in and it ended up going well over Ben Killip’s crossbar.

Shaun Pearson earned a yellow card for bringing down Luke James on the corner of the Wrexham 18-yard box after 24 minutes. The free kick was fired into the visitors’ area, but Jason Kennedy could only send his header high over the stand containing the travelling Wrexham supporters.

The best move of the match to date, stared at the back with Barton collecting the ball after Lawlor had blocked former Red Gime Toure, Redmond set off on a run through the middle, took a one-two from Tollitt and moved into the Hartlepool box, only to see his shot from 12 yards held by Killip.

Wrexham took the lead on 38 minutes when a not dissimilar move, saw Tollitt set Akil Wright free in space, although the Scouser took a knock to his ankles for his troubles.

Wright looked up and tried his luck from well outside the Hartlepool box, get the aid of a deflection to leave Killip wrong footed as the ball sailed passed him and into the back of the net.

Three minutes later, Toure was able to cross the ball from his left and found the ever-dangerous Liam Noble, who twisted one way and then the other on the edge of the box before testing Dibble with a curling shot.

The resulting corner as headed on from in the centre of the goal and virtually hit Toure, standing on his own towards the back post, who with a slight nod of his head directed the ball to fly high passed the exposed Dibble from six yards for the equaliser.

Ht 1-1

Two minutes in the second half and Wrexham lost the ball in midfield, and on the run the shot from was saved by Dibble, but the ball bounced out and when it was only hacked high into the air, as it came to earth the referee adjudged Pearson had held his man and awarded a penalty.

Up stepped Noble to hammer the ball high into a top corner of the Wrexham net to push the home side in front for the first time on the afternoon.

Five minutes later, the Reds once again failed to clear the danger and on the edge of the box Noble was afforded so much space, that he could pick his spot and fired a low shot to the right of the diving Dibble to further extend the Pools lead.

On 55 minutes and the lead was reduced as referee Richardson pointed to the spot once again, this time for a pull on a Wrexham shirt when the Reds were on the attack at a corner.

Up stepped Bobby Grant to send Killip the wrong way from 12-yards.

Barton was booked on 58 minutes for fouling James, as the midfielder slipped through the centre, but this time Noble’s shooting let him down from 22-yards.

Our next change came with Tollitt replaced by Mark Harris on 59 minutes.

A minute later and Noble chased down an over hit cross stopping it from going out of play and sending a looping ball back into the Wrexham penalty area, where Toure rose highest to guide his header inside the back post.

As the home crowd urged their side on, matters went from bad to worse for Wrexham, as Lawlor collected a red card for a challenge on Kennedy.

From the opposite side of the pitch, it didn’t appear to be a particularly nasty coming together, but maybe the video will show different, as the referee sent the defender for his second early bath of the season on 64 minutes.

Wrexham were though quickly back on the attack and from a corner on 69 minutes, at first Pearson was denied by a packed defence and then Killip’s fingertips, the keeper turning away the skipper’s curling shot.

Our final change on 78 minutes saw Luke Young coming on for Redmond.

Hartlepool were turning the screws in the latter stages and full back Kerr, never one afraid to go onto the attack, forced another save from Dibbs with an angled drive.

The final minutes passed with out further incident, save a booking for home keeper, as he time wasted from a restart

Hartlepool United: Killip, Kioso, Kerr, Raynes, Cunningham, Kitching, Mafuta, Noble (Hawkes 90), Kennedy (Featherstone 75), James, Toure (Bale 90).
Subs: Donaldson, Holohan.

Wrexham: Dibble, Barnham-Bobb, Pearson, Lawlor, Carrington, Redmond (Young 78), Wright, Barton, Grant, Hooper (McIntosh 17), Tollitt (Harris 59).
Subs: Lainton, Rutherford.

Referee: D Richardson
Attendance: 3,462
Away: 311

Sending Off –
Lawlor (64, violent conduct)

Bookings -
Noble (45+1, foul), Killip (90, time wasting)
Wrexham: Pearson (24, foul), Barton (58, foul)


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