HARTLEPOOL United’s secret weapon has been revealed – Nobby Solano’s long throw-in!
The little Peruvian made his first assist in Pools colours during Saturday’s 2-1 defeat at York City.
That the source of his contribution came from the palms of his hands rather than his wand of a right boot is the biggest surprise.
Launching the ball into the penalty area from the right flank, Solano’s delivery was pounced upon by Adam Boyd who hooked home to level eight minutes before The Minstermen stole a stoppage-time win.
Manager Mick Wadsworth admits Pools refrained from rolling out their usual set-piece routines to safeguard against prying eyes from the MK Dons camp.
But the Solano secret is out of the bag, as the first-team coach joked with SportMail: “Nobby’s long throws are something we’ve been trying to keep quiet, so MK Dons will know all about that now!
“But any scouts wouldn’t have picked much up about our set-plays or how we play. We changed things a little bit and I expect us to be totally different next week.”
Wadsworth made five changes to the side which won at Harrogate last week and made the same number of substitutions at the break.
And he added: “We mixed it up and I think that was the right thing to do.
“We always learn something from these games, but the most important thing is that people get minutes on the pitch.
“It was a good game because it was high-tempo.
“But I’ve never been fooled by pre-season results because it doesn’t mean the slightest thing.
“They have never been an indicator of how a season will start because come next Saturday the tempo and intensity and the mentality is totally different – you can’t recreate it.
“But we got a lot out of it and I saw a lot of things which were negative, which helps me make decisions with regards to team selection.
“We’ll work on those later in the week when we know what the starting line-up is for Saturday, which in my mind I know within one place.”
Read the full story in Monday’s Mail ...