Derby matches are often nervy and tight affairs which don’t live up to the pre-match hype. Not this one.
In 1979, Pools and Darlington served up a four-goal game to remember, not least because it could have been an even bigger victory for Billy Horner’s team.
It started badly for Pool who trailed after 10 minutes.
Bainbridge sent a harmless looking ball down the middle of the park but there was confusion in the box and Darlington winger Alan Walsh - who comes from Hartlepool - connected from five yards out to squeeze the ball past Watson.
From then on, Hartlepool pressed for an equaliser. Our reporter said at the time: “Pool were clearly shaken by the goal and towards half time, as their efforts to get back into the game failed, Darlington’s confidence began to rise.
“They saw more of the ball than they had earlier but did not have many ideas on what to do with it.
We outclassed them from start to finish. We were only behind because of a bad goal we gave away. They could not take much credit for creating it. We could have finished up winning by a lot moreBilly Horner
“Pool on the other hand, had the ideas but couldn’t quite finish them off.”
It was a different story in the second half and yet it started frustratingly. Bob Newton was brought down in the box by Graham Clark and took the penalty kick himself, but the visitors goalkeeper Phil Owers flung himself to the right to keep the ball out.
It was a temporary reprieve for Darlington as Pool were level on 57 minutes. Clive Nattress was penalised for obstruction and Derek Loadwick took the indirect free kick. He squared the ball for Wayne Goldthorpe who blasted it through the wall which broke up instead of standing firm.
It only took another seven minutes for Billy Horner’s team to take the lead. A Darlington attempt to clear the ball only reached John Linacre on the right. He danced his way around a tackle before sending over a perfect cross for Billy Ayre to head home.
It was all Pools now and it was 3-1 on 71 minutes when Newton beat two men and cut into the penalty box. He was brought down by Jimmy Cochrane for a second penalty but this time, Goldthorpe grabbed the ball and hammered it past Owers.
The injured Darlingon keeper had to be replaced and our reporter added: “How Pool didn’t add to their score is a total mystery.”
After the game, Billy Horner said: “We outclassed them from start to finish. We were only behind because of a bad goal we gave away. They could not take much credit for creating it.
“We could have finished up winning by a lot more.”
It was a perfect belated present for Billy whose birthday was the day before the match.
Hartlepool: Watson, Lawrence, Gorry, Goldthorpe, Brooks, Ayre, Linacre, Houchen, Newton, Harding, Loadwick. Sub; Staff.
Darlington: Owers, Coleman, Cochrane, Nattress, Bainbridge, McLean, Clark, Charlton, Seal, Ellis, Walsh. Sub: Taylor.
Referee. K. Hackett (Sheffield).