A Paul Dobson moment of magic settled this Pools match

Alan Shoulder gets a close-range shot in but the keeper saves.
Alan Shoulder gets a close-range shot in but the keeper saves.

Sometimes, all that matters is the result.

It was everything for Pools in this game which they rarely looked like winning until manager Billy Horner made an inspired second half substitution.

Billy Horner

Billy Horner

With the game tied at 1-1 and Aldershot looking the more likely to grab a second, on came Paul Dobson.

With his first four touches, he had the ball in the net three times.

However, only one of them counted although it was an absolute beauty.

Goalkeepr Eddie Blackburn kicked a long clearance which Alan Shoulder knocked into Dobson’s path. He moved to the corner of the penalty area where he unleashed an unstoppable shot into the far corner of the visitors’ net.

He is a handy lad to bring on when you need a goal and that is just what we put him on for

Billy Horner

It brought great praise from Horner who aid: “He is a handy lad to bring on when you need a goal and that is just what we put him on for.”

He admitted Pools had been “completely outplayed” and said his team looked scared stiff of losing.

The win put Pools level at the top of the table, even if it was hard fought.

It had all started so well when Pools took the lead on ten minutes. Keith Nobbs got his first goal for the club.

David Linighan hit a long ball out of defence and Nobbs latched on to it. He raced to the edge of the eight-yard box and sent an angled shot between the Aldershot goalkeeper Coles and the post.

Pools kept up the pressure and almost increased their lead through Linighan and Borthwick, who took too long in the box with the goal at his mercy.

Aldershot fought back and a Barry Blankley effort was only kept out by a Tony Smith clearance on the line.

Then it was Pools turn to step up a gear and Borthwick in particular went close, only for the visiting keeper to pull off a string of fine saves.

Back came Aldershot who rattled a shot off the Pools bar before they levelled the score up on 60 minutes. Phil Fearn fired a great shot from 15 yards into the top corner.

McDonald almost put Aldershot in front when his effort came back off the underside of the Pools bar.

Then Dobson was brought on and made all the difference.

He had the ball past David Coles with his first touch and beat the keeper again a minute later.

But then came the shot that counted - the one that sent the crowd of 3,329 fans wild.

Pundits described the game as one of those ones where, if you can win ugly, you’ve got a great chance.

Next up was Southend - and a win in that away day could put Pools clear at the top.