Gateshead to play games at Hartlepool’s Victoria Park

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VICTORIA Park is to host some of Gateshead’s remaining fixtures after Pools stepped in to help the struggling Blue Square Bet Premier side.

The Tyneside outfit have been suffering ongoing drainage problems with the pitch at The International Stadium and have played just once on home soil since November.

Saturday’s trip to Forest Green Rovers will be their ninth away game in the last ten and the postponement of fixtures has seen them tumble to fifth bottom in the table.

The Heed will now play seven of their remaining home fixtures at The Vic, the first of which will see them host Wrexham on Tuesday February, 19.

Russ Green, Hartlepool United’s chief executive, said “We received a call from Gateshead explaining the situation with their pitch and were asked if we could help in any way.

“Fortunately, we’re in a position where we can offer some assistance and we’re more than happy to be able to help out a fellow north east club.

“Obviously it will entail quite a lot of work on the part of staff at Hartlepool United but we hope that by offering this help we can alleviate Gateshead’s problem.

“Although they won’t be playing at home, we hope that we can make Gateshead and their supporters feel at home during their games here and that they can enjoy some good results at Victoria Park.”

Pools say The Vic is one of only a handful of stadiums which has the necessary A grading to stage Conference games and Gateshead chairman Graham Wood said he is thrilled Pools have come to the rescue.

He said: “Hartlepool have been very helpful and understanding regarding the predicament we have found ourselves in.

“It’s great to have a neighbour so willing to help. It’s a tremendous gesture on their part and one that we really appreciate.

“They could not have been more accommodating and everyone we spoke to at the Club wanted to help us as much as they could.

“While it is disappointing not to be able to play at our home ground it will be an enjoyable experience playing at Victoria Park and one we are looking forward to.”

Gateshead - who have former Pools stars Ben Clark and James Brown in their squad - have reduced entry prices for Pools Season Ticket holders with adults paying just £10 and concessions at £5.

Gateshead games at The Vic:

Wrexham

Tuesday, February 19, 7.45pm

Braintree Town

Saturday, March 13, 3pm

Hereford United

Tuesday, March 19, 7.45pm

Grimsby Town

Tuesday, March 26, 7.45pm