Accrington 3 Hartlepool United 1: Match report, Stanley outclass Pools

Ronnie Moore
Ronnie Moore

Hartlepool United were outclassed at Accrington Stanley in tonight's re-arranged League Two match in Lancashire.

Accrington, who had not played a home game since November 14, played some beautiful football at the Crown Ground.

Stanley had the points wrapped up by half-time, thanks to Adam Buxton's free-kick and a fine run and finish by Shay McCartan in stoppage time.

McCartan added a third in the 58th minute.

Pools pulled a goal back in the 78th minute when sub Rakish Bingham fired a super right-foot shot past Jason Mooney.

Accrington began brightly, winning a couple of early corners.

But Pools threatened in the 10th minute when Jordan Richards whipped in a good free-kick which Rhys Oates could not quite reach.

Other than that, it was Stanley who called the tune.

Ex-Pools loan man Matt Crooks forced a brilliant save from Carson in the 14th minute, taking the ball on his right before transferring it to his left with the keeper diving to hids right to keep it out.

McCartan ran well a few minutes later and found Sean McConville on the left and Carson got down to his right to save.

A goal was coming and it duly arrived in the 24th minute.

Pools conceded a free-kick just outside the box, which BUXTON lifted over the ball over the wall and beat Carson diving to his right.

There was some encouragement for Pools in the 31st minute when Michael Woods drove forward and Oates beat two Stanley players but his long-range shot was half-blocked and no danger to keeper Jason

Mooney.

However, Pools were unlucky from a corner soon after. Richards put the delivery in which Ellis Harrison made a good connection with only to see his header come back off Mooney's right-hand post and

cleared.

Seven minutes later, it was Accrington's turn to hit the woodwork from a corner, Matty Pearson's header hitting Carson's left stick.

Stanley were worthy of a 1-0 lead as half-time approached, but they doubled their advantage in the opening seconds of added time.

Crooks was the provider, putting in McCARTAN who made a good run and a finish to match, beating Carson to his left.

Half-time:

Accrington 2

Pools 0

Ellis Harrison was straight into the action with a determined run for Pools but play soon returned to the away half.

Carson was called into action again when Billy Kee lobbed a shot towards goal and Carson made a fine save.

But he was powerless to prevent Stanley's third goal in the 58th minute.

Scott Harrison failed to deal with a long home ball and it fell to McCARTAN who placed his left-foot shot neatly into Carson's right corner.

Moore rang the changes, making a triple change just after the hour mark.

Scott Fenwick, Nathan Thomas and Woods all came off with Rakish Bingham, Lewis Hawkins and Jake Gray coming on.

Bingham made an early impression, finding Hawkins, whose shot was comfortably saved by Mooney.

Pools were enjoying more ball in the final quarter of the match, but, of course, by then the contest was already over.

Ellis Harrison almost pulled one back when his left footer was deflected for corner which Mooney flapped clear ... just.

But Pools kept the ball, Nicky Featherstone finding Gray who played it to BINGHAM. The sub took a touch before unleashing a powerful right-foot shoty which rocketed into Mooney's left corner.

Pools were denied what appeared a stonewall 84th-minute penalty when Bingham was hauled down by Joe Wright, but referee Darren Drysdale ruled no foul.

Full-time:

ACCRINGTON STANLEY 3

HARTLEPOOL UNITED 1

Accrington: Mooney, Halliday, Wright, Pearson, Buxton, Mingoia, Conneely, Crooks, McConville (Procter 90), McCarten (Bruna 83), Kee (Gornell 75).

Unused subs: Etheridge, Barry, Davies, Procter, Wakefield, Bruna

Goals: Buxton 24, McCartan 45, 58

Pools: Carson, Richards, S Harrison, Jackson, Carroll, Oates, Featherstone, Woods (Gray 63), Thomas (Hawkins 61), Fenwick (Bingham 61), E Harrison.

Unused subs: Bartlett, Jones, Walker, Smith

Goal: Bingham 78

Booked: Thomas 33, Richards 82

Referee: Darren Drysdale (Lincs)

Att: 1,211 (Pools 85)