Football fans will come together as one in a show of support for Hartlepool United today.
More than 6,500 home fans will pack out Victoria Park for today’s sell out game against Wrexham that has been dubbed Save Pools Day by fans.
Pools fan Mike Lewis, who started the hashtag #savepoolsday on social media to fill the ground and help the club’s finances, says today is a chance to celebrate and show the world what Hartlepool United stands for.
TV presenter and big Pools fan Jeff Stelling also sent a message of support.
Mike said: “When we started we just wanted to get a few extra bums on seats but as it went on the aim was to get it to be a sell out and we have got there.
“It’s fantastic and will be a massive boost to the finances of the club.”
Mike said the game promises to be a special day as fans from across the country are coming to the game including many from Middlesbrough.
He added: “Fans are coming from Leeds, two lads are coming from Ireland, a couple of Italians working in Durham at the moment, Sunderland, Newcastle, Scotland, and of course Middlesbrough.
“It’s about fans coming together as one for the football team.
“We want to make it a special atmosphere today, a fans’ day.
“Let’s make it a day to celebrate what Hartlepool should be all about.
“Hopefully a potential investor will see that it is a loved club and there is potential there.”
He also urged fans to spend money in the ground to drive up the club’s finances even more and encouraged supporters who may have stayed away in recent months to keep coming to matches after today.
Sky Sports Soccer Saturday host Jeff Stelling praised the support shown by the football community nationwide, saying: “From fans up and down the country it has been brilliant, especially Middlesbrough supporters who are coming in their droves.
“My message to the fans is to get behind the team and we might get the sort of performance we saw against Doncaster at the end of last season.
“In the longer term, if new investment goes through I would say to everybody get behind them.
“Show your support by turning up at matches and backing the players.”
It seems as if the whole town has got behind the club in the last week with schools and businesses holding fundraisers, and the council waiving car parking charges today.
Mike added: “It’s amazing we have gone from despair two weeks ago to basically a celebration of Hartlepool United.
“It just shows how much it means to people and makes you really proud of your town.”
A crowdfunding website at JustGiving.com started by fan Rachel Cartwright now stands at almost £60,000 and will be used to pay club wages and bills, helping to stave off administration while Pools looks for a new owner.
To support the fund visit: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/savehartlepoolunitedfootballclub