Hartlepool United defender Gary Liddle discusses why he felt Harrogate Town match 'was there for the taking' despite 1-0 defeat

Gary Liddle felt there was little to choose between Hartlepool United and Harrogate Town in their New Year’s Day clash at Victoria Park.

Thursday, 2nd January 2020, 11:45 am
Updated Thursday, 2nd January 2020, 1:23 pm
Hartlepool United's Gary Liddle in action during the Vanarama National League match between Hartlepool United and Dagenham & Redbridge at Victoria Park, Hartlepool on Sunday 22nd December 2019. (Credit: Mark Fletcher | MI News)
Hartlepool United's Gary Liddle in action during the Vanarama National League match between Hartlepool United and Dagenham & Redbridge at Victoria Park, Hartlepool on Sunday 22nd December 2019. (Credit: Mark Fletcher | MI News)

But it was the visitors who came out on top once again as Jon Stead’s second half strike saw Harrogate emerge as 1-0 victors.

Liddle started in the heart of defence for Pools but couldn’t prevent them suffering a third defeat against Simon Weaver’s side in under three weeks.

“The game was there for the taking, both teams cancelled each other out and it was a scrappy one,” said the Walsall loanee.

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“It’s a disappointing one because there weren’t too many chances in the game but they took the chance that they did have.

“We needed more belief and endeavour – we upped the tempo slightly in the second half but we didn’t really show that in the first half.

“But it’s another defeat. For too long Hartlepool has been a club where you win a game, feel as though you can go on a run and then lose two out of three or win two and then go five without a win, there’s just no consistency.

“We thought there was a chance of going on an upward turn after the Daggers game but we’ve picked up one point from nine since so it all comes down to consistency.”

Harrogate’s decisive goal came just before the hour mark as they broke away from a Hartlepool attack before Stead rolled the ball past debutant goalkeeper Mitchell Beeney.

“I can’t really remember the goal too clearly,” Liddle admitted.

“I’m not sure if it was Stead or Raynesy with the final touch but it just went across the goal and sneaked in which is disappointing but I’d have to see it again.”

Liddle, who started his fourth consecutive match in 11 days following his loan return from Walsall, will now have the weekend off as Hartlepool prepare to face Oxford United in the FA Cup third round.

“This was my fourth game since I’ve been here in just a couple weeks but I’ve loved it, it’s probably a welcome rest this weekend for me being cup tied,” he added. “It’s about playing football, which is what I love.”