Hartlepool United midfielder Nicky Featherstone reveals Dave Challinor's half-time warning during 4-1 defeat at Harrogate Town and how they will look to make amends against Barrow

Nicky Featherstone felt Hartlepool United ‘were second best everywhere’ following their 4-1 defeat at Harrogate Town on Boxing Day.

Friday, 27th December 2019, 4:45 pm
Nicky Featherstone of Hartlepool United, December 2019. (Credit: Paul Paxford | MI News)
Nicky Featherstone of Hartlepool United, December 2019. (Credit: Paul Paxford | MI News)

Second half goals from Lloyd Kerry, Josh Falkingham and a Jack Muldoon brace condemned Pools to their third straight away defeat with Nicke Kabamba coming off the bench to grab a late consolation.

And after a solid win against Dagenham & Redbridge just before Christmas, Featherstone and his Hartlepool teammates were met with that all too familiar feeling of failing to back up a positive result with another.

“We were second best everywhere to be honest and lost every single individual battle out there and it’s really disappointing after a good performance on Saturday,” Featherstone admitted.

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“It’s really strange, we can’t put back to back performances or results together which is really frustrating.

“A win here would have pushed us right up to where we want to be with a game in hand but for whatever reason we’ve not put in a performance but the goals we’ve conceded we’re very poor.”

The sides went in at half-time at 0-0 in what had been a fairly even, albeit uninspiring opening 45-minutes at the CNG Stadium. Pools were clearly very much in the game at this point but for manager Dave Challinor, the warning signs of a second half collapse were there.

“At half-time, the gaffer warned us that Harrogate would come out firing second half so we had to stay in the game and keep things tight,” Featherstone added.

“We needed to try and be more of a threat because he didn’t think we were a threat in the first half either.

“We completely went against that and it was such a disappointing day all around.”

Next up for Pools is league leaders Barrow at Victoria Park on Saturday and with that comes an opportunity to earn some form of redemption before hosting Harrogate on New Year’s Day.

“We’ve got a target over the Christmas period with what we want to achieve,” the United midfielder continued.

“Boxing Day was a set-back there’s no hiding that but there’s an opportunity to turn things around quickly and that’s what the Christmas period does.”