Familiar faces in Hartlepool Utd v Carlisle Utd clash

Antony Sweeney plays the ball forward during the fist half against Cheltenham
Antony Sweeney plays the ball forward during the fist half against Cheltenham

THERE will be some familiar faces back at Victoria Park when Carlisle United head to Hartlepool.

Antony Sweeney, a former Pools stalwart until this summer, could return to the starting line-up if he manages to shake off a shoulder injury which saw him miss the 1-0 win over Tranmere Rovers.

The other familiar face is Colin West, who will be taking his place in the Carlisle dugout next to manager Keith Curle.

When Curle took over from Graham Kavanagh earlier this season he brought with him former Pools assistant manager West - who enjoyed two spells on the coaching staff at Pools.

On the playing front, Curle believes United’s big summer signing Billy Paynter has much more to offer.

Paynter, who was left out of the side last weekend, will be working closely with Curle in a bid to rediscover his form after scoring just one goal this season.

“I’ve had a conversation with Billy Paynter,” Curle told the News & Star.

“This is an observation from watching the Shrewsbury game the other week, the Mansfield game and seeing him in training.

“I’ve met Billy before when I tried to sign him for Notts County and what I liked is he had that Scouse spark about him.

“When he came here I thought he lost that spark.

“My job is to get that back. If I can get him firing again, I know I’ve got a player.”

Last weekend’s first league triumph of the season was earned by David Amoo’s second goal in successive games.

“I think I’ve only just started with David,” added Curle.

“He can go past people, he’s a fit lad, and he can score goals.

“You do get some players that you don’t need to overcoach and I think David falls into that bracket.”

Curle is sweating on the fitness of Sweeney and Sean O’Hanlon (toe) ahead of Saturday while he is also set to decide on the fate of the several trialists who figured in Tuesday’s 8-0 reserve defeat at Newcastle.

l POOLS v Carlisle previews:

Pages 46, 47 & 48