Antony Sweeney plays 45 minutes for Hartlepool United at Hull

BACK IN ACTION: Antony Sweeney
BACK IN ACTION: Antony Sweeney

ANTONY Sweeney will hope to have put himself in contention for a start in Hartlepool United’s vital League One clash with Yeovil Town this weekend.

The midfielder played the first 45 minutes of a reserve-team defeat for Pools at Hull City last night, 24 hours after appearing in the dying moments of the goalless draw with Colchester.

Pools are set to be without in-form teenage midfielder Jack Baldwin who was injured on Tuesday night.

Sweeney, who twisted his knee early in January’s home defeat by Bournemouth, will be a contender to start against the high-flying Glovers on Saturday.

The 29-year-old had little opportunity to impress last night in a largely one-sided reserve-team contest against the strong second-string sent out by the Tigers.

But reserves boss Michael Barron explained that Sweeney came through his first-half stint at North Ferriby comfortably.

“We spoke to the physios yesterday morning and it was always the plan to play Sweens for the first 45 minutes,” Barron told SportMail.

“He has trained but last night was about getting some competitive minutes on the pitch – running, chasing, tackling etc.

“It was a hard game for him in terms of getting time on the ball.

“But he got what we set out to give him – a full half – so from a fitness point of view it was a case of job done.

“We will assess him today but he appeared to have come through with no problems.”

It was a tough evening for a young Pools side.

Francis McCaffrey put the Tigers ahead early in the first half.

Lewis Clarkson and Andy Dawson netted after the break before McCaffrey added his second to make it 4-0.

SEE Thursday’s Mail for full story and more Pools news and features