Dave Challinor hails impact of Hartlepool United ace Rhys Oates in promotion push

Dave Challinor has hailed the impact of Rhys Oates as Hartlepool United continue their push for promotion back to the EFL.

Sunday, 4th April 2021, 12:30 pm

On Friday, Pools claimed a 2-1 win over Dagenham & Redbridge at Victoria Park to go 12 games unbeaten in the National League.

Goals from Oates and Gavan Holohan either side of Matthew Robinson’s first half header was enough to see Hartlepool claim another important three points in their promotion push.

On Oates, Challinor said: “All of the players are important but Oatesy is an outlet for us where he has that pace that we don’t have in abundance from other players.

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Hartlepool United's Rhys Oates celebrates after scoring during the Vanarama National League match between Hartlepool United and Dagenham and Redbridge. Mark Fletcher | MI News & Sport Ltd

"He’s a different type and him and Luke Armstrong work really well together and they have a great habit where if one of them doesn’t score the other one tends to.

"Sometimes by chaos, they tend to cause teams problems through their willingness to work and not give up and put people under pressure.

"I’ll be as critical as anyone and when they’re going towards the ball, things can break down off them and we’ve been working on things in terms of partnerships and making sure one of them is going in behind and one of them is showing to feet.

"We need to do better at that. Oatesy’s strength is balls down the side and being able to smash it and get it on target as much as possible.”

On Pools’ set piece work, Challinor – ahead of the Easter Monday trip to Boreham Wood – added: “We’ve been doing a little bit of work on.

“It’s not massively technical, we’ll work on different movements and someone spinning off around the back which worked with Gav getting a free header.

"It’s about movement, delivery and most of the time our delivery is good from Feath and from Fergie and a desire to want to go and head it.

"There’s one ball and 15, 16 players trying to get it.

"If you’re the player who has the desire to get your head on it then if you’ve got the technical ability to direct it on target then you’ve got a good chance of scoring. It’s not massive rocket science, it’s just about getting the detail.”

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