Christmas 2004 was a really good one for Hartlepool United who were in a Welsh wonderland.
An away day at Wrexham could hardly have gone any better as Pools returned to the North East with a 5-1 win under their belt.
There were great displays from Sweeney and Boyd among the many heroes that day.
But the star of the show was Nelson who got a 9 out of 10 marking from the Mail reporter of the day.
Incredibly, Pools had the worst record in the Football League One division at the time for the most away defeats. In fact, going into the match, Neale Cooper’s team had yet to win on their travels.
It was all change though at the Racecourse Ground where Pools were in front from the 8th minute.
Pools wrapped the game up in the 72nd minute when Eifion Williams sprinted from the halfway line before squaring for Sweeney who planted a firm shot under the home keeper’s bodyHartlepool Mail reporter, 2004
Adam Boyd worked his way into the box before pulling the ball back for Ritchie Humphreys who planted a left-footed shot into the corner of the goal.
Ten minutes later, Joel Porter put Tony Sweeney through. He ran from the halfway line before beating Wrexham keeper Dibble to make it 2-0.
Wrexham rallied and a spell of pressure paid off with a goal on 25 minutes. Craig Morgan headed a free kick back along along the goal line where Juan Ugarte was waiting to head in from one yard.
The home team pushed for an equaliser for the next ten minutes but, when they had their best chance to square the game up, Chris Westwood was on hand to head off the line.
Instead, Pools restored their two-goal advantage on 35 minutes. Joel Porter fed Boyd who ran towards the touchline before shooting towards the back post, where Porter was on hand to prod the ball home.
Two minutes later, it was 4-1 to Pools.
Humphreys played Boyd in from the right and the striker took the ball in his stride before comfortably shooting past the keeper.
A shellshocked Wrexham came out for the second half with a mountain to climb and it could have got even worse within minutes of the restart.
Hugh Robertson left fly with a free kick which went only inches wide.
Wrexham ralled once more and had a great chance on 57 minutes when they were awarded a corner from Hector Sam’s deflected shot.
The cross was met by a header from Lawrence which Konstantopoulos did well to get down to.
Moments later, the Pools keeper was called into action again. This time, he could not hold on to Mackin’s shot but Nelson was on hand to clear.
Pools wrapped the game up in the 72nd minute when Eifion Williams sprinted from the halfway line before squaring for Sweeney who planted a firm shot under the home keeper’s body.
The Mail called it a ‘festive feat’ for Pools fans. It certainly helped in their battle for promotion. Pools were within one point of a play-off place.
Wrexham: Dibble, Roberts, Lawrence, Morgan, Whitley (Spender), Llewellyn, Ferguson (Mark Jones), Mackin, Holt, Sam, Ugarte (Armstrong). Subs not used: Smith, Michael Jones.
Hartlepool: Konstantopoulos, Ross, Westwood, Nelson, Robertson, Williams (Istead), Sweeney, Tinkler, Humphreys, Boyd, (Strachan), Porter (Appleby). Subs not used: Provett, Brackstone.