Onside: Heroes to zeros as Pools crash again

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WELL, the feel-good factor at Pools didn’t last long into the New Year did it?

Players, management and fans alike were all buoyed by the marvellous 3-2 win away to Sheffield United, only to have our hopes dashed with another horror show at The Vic.

The coupon-busting win against Danny Wilson’s Blades caused shock waves across the world of football.

Hartlepool United had not only won a game of football, but had actually scored three goals in the process.

“Unbelievable Jeff” - in the words of Stelling’s Sky Sports colleague Chris Kamara.

I almost fell out of my chair in utter disbelief as the final scores from around the grounds rolled in.

Poolies didn’t know what to do with themselves on Saturday night, for it had been so long since we had a win to celebrate.

The result had Pools fans, me included, wondering if the Great Escape could actually be on.

Could we go from having just nine points at Christmas to actually surviving the drop? Surely not.

Well no, of course not, and the game on New Year’s Day proved that.

Fast-forward a couple of days and it was business as usual at The Vic with another sorry home defeat, this time to Preston North End.

You know your side is in real trouble when the goalkeeper, up front in a desperate attempt to score, has one of the best chances of the match to equalise.

Due to festive New Year celebration commitments in the North West, I wasn’t at the Preston game.

Instead I was watching Tevez, Aguero, Silva and co as Manchester City took on Stoke in the Premier League.

As much as I hate missing any Pools game, the chance to “enjoy” a game of football and even see the odd goal was just too good an opportunity to miss.

Having said that, I did have high hopes for writing my first blog of 2013 heralding Pools’ cracking win against Sheff Utd, but the team managed to make sure supporters kept their feet, heads and hearts firmly on the ground.

The writing is on the wall for Pools, and while we may scrape together the odd win between now and the end of April, the likelihood is that defeats - similar to the one against Preston - are far more likely to be the regular occurrence for John Hughes’s men.

On a brighter note, Happy New Year everyone and let’s hope the first game of 2013 isn’t an omen for the next 12 months.

- RICHARD MENNEAR