Hartlepool United aim to play well at Crawley to p-p-p-pick up the Penguins

PLAYING WITH HART: Peter Hartley. Picture by FRANK REID

PLAYING WITH HART: Peter Hartley. Picture by FRANK REID

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PETER Hartley will have penguin-clad friends and family in the stands at Broadfield Stadium tomorrow – and it is they who are owed a performance, argues the skipper.

The club’s fans are again set to don fancy-dress costumes in their traditional end-of-season celebration for the trip to Crawley Town.

Hartley, however, accepts there is little to celebrate this time around given Pools’ relegation to the bottom tier.

The 25-year-old is a lifelong Pools supporter and travelled the length and breadth of the country as a schoolboy to cheer on his team.

And that is why he appreciates the efforts the fans go to in following he and his colleagues.

“The fans have been fantastic considering the situation we’ve been in all season,” Hartley told SportMail.

“For them to still go in fancy dress is brilliant.

“My girlfriend’s dad and brother and all their friends are going as penguins.

“It’s unbelievable the support we get.

“I was a fan and used to do all that.

“I went to the play-off semi-final at Bristol City and used to go all over when I was still at school.

“I know exactly what it means to them so we owe them our best efforts at Crawley.”

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