Hartlepool United manager Dave Challinor reflects on the decision to drop goalkeeper Ben Killip and assesses Mitchell Beeney's debut

Hartlepool United manager Dave Challinor made the decision to drop number one goalkeeper Ben Killip in favour of non-contract back-up Mitchell Beeney for the New Year's Day defeat against Harrogate Town.

Thursday, 2nd January 2020, 4:45 pm
Mitchell Beeney of Hartlepool United during the Vanarama National League match between Hartlepool United and Harrogate Town at Victoria Park, Hartlepool on Wednesday 1st January 2020. (Credit: Mark Fletcher | MI News & Sport )

Killip has come under fire for several errors over the course of the season, the most recent of which came against Barrow on Saturday.

As a result, Challinor made the decision to bring former Chelsea and England under-19 shot stopper Beeney straight into the side.

And when discussing how he informed Killip of the news, Challinor said: “Ben took the news as I expected to take it, he wasn’t angry or anything like that. h

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Ben Killip celebrates during the FA Cup victory over Exeter City. Picture by FRANK REID

“He understands that he’s made mistakes and ultimately he plays in the one position where, it’s similar to the defenders who may have had a loss of form or made mistakes and their position has come under threat.

“With all of the players, you’ve got to make decisions which aren’t just short term decisions but also medium and longer term decisions as well.

“He’s fine about that and what he has to do is put himself in my shoes or another goalkeeper’s shoes because if I was a goalkeeper looking in, I’d be thinking I deserve a shot and he was fine about that.

“I thought Mitch did fine without having a great deal to do.

“There were some bits he could have done better but he was fine and Ben has obviously got to respond in the right way and do everything he can to get back in the side.

“Then all of a sudden, we have those two or if we decide to add another then we’ve got that competition which is healthy because you’ve got someone who is playing and asking questions about how the other goalkeepers are going to dislodge them from the team.

“From a manager’s position, hopefully Mitch doesn’t get dislodged because it’ll mean that we’re getting decent results and performing well.”

Pools also signed club legend Dimi Konstantopoulos on non-contract terms last month though the 41-year-old hasn’t been involved since his eventful second debut at Harrogate Town in the FA Trophy.

The Greek goalkeeper saved a penalty before two late spills gifted progression to Harrogate.