Hartlepool United manager Dave Challinor explains 'the key' to 1-0 win at Torquay United

Hartlepool United ended a run of four away games without a win with a crucial 1-0 victory at Torquay United on Saturday afternoon.

Pools went into the game knowing that a win would take them level with the National League leaders.

And Luke Molyneux’s first goal since November proved to be the difference between the sides as the winger gave Dave Challinor’s side an early lead that they were able to hold on to.

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Hartlepool manager, Dave Challinor before the Vanarama National League match between Hartlepool United and Yeovil Town at Victoria Park, Hartlepool on Saturday 20th February 2021. (Credit: Mark Fletcher | MI News)

"We made a really positive start, we were outstanding in the first 25-minutes and I thought the game was there to be won for us,” Challinor told The Mail.

“We scored the goal in that time and looked a real threat and could have gone on to score that second goal.

"In fairness to Torquay, they adapted to the shape we started with and came into the game themselves. The second half was just about real grit and determination to do our jobs and do our bit against a really good attacking side whilst also maintaining a threat on the counter.

"We did that brilliantly but the defensive organisation and the outfield work the 10 did was the key part in it.”

Hartlepool are taking three points back 365-miles to the north east as they claimed another important win against a promotion rival.

Challinor’s side have beaten fellow challengers Sutton United, Notts County, Stockport County and now Torquay in their last 13 matches without conceding.

“Without going into too much detail about our record, we know that when we score first we tend to win games,” Challinor added.

“We’ve scored first 14 times this season and won 12 games from it and drawn two with the second coming at Halifax Town the other night.

“We would have liked to score a second goal because we didn’t want to see the game out.

"What we have been is more solid with our shape and we’re confident that if we do score one goal we can win the game and keep a clean sheet. It’s a very good trait to have if you want to be at the top of the table.”

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