Hartlepool United captain praises Louis Laing and Liam Donnelly for stepping into the breach

Carl Magnay.
Carl Magnay.

Carl Magnay has given his backing to defensive comrades Louis Laing and Liam Donnelly.

Craig Harrison was forced to change 50% of Hartlepool United’s back four for Saturday’s National League match with Eastleigh after the in-form on-loan combination of Keith Watson (knee) and Michael Ledger (back) were sidelined.

Laing and Donnelly came in and performed admirably, with Magnay pointing to “concentration” issues by Pools as the cause of a 2-1 defeat.

His opposite number, Callum Howe, escaped his clutches to prod in the first with Mark Yeates doubling the lead with a fine strike.

And Magnay said the loss of Watson and Ledger was not the reason for the defeat.

“We have lads that can come in and do a good job for us,” said the skipper.

“I never went into the game less confident because we didn’t have Keith and Ledge.

“The only thing it upset was our continuity.

“It’s probably no coincidence that in our little unbeaten run we only conceded two goals and a lot of that’s probably been down to repetition.

“We’ve had the same back four, know each other’s roles, distances, moving together, all that.

“We got into a good groove in that period, so it’s a bit difficult for the two lads coming in a at central defence, difficult to get that relationship straight away.

“Laingy and Donners did fine in general play.

“We’ve lacked concentration on two set-pieces, that’s what’s costs us. But no one is disheartened.

“We can’t wait to get back out there on Saturday at Woking and get a positive result.”

Harrison hopes to have Ledger available while he is awaiting on scan results on Watson’s knee.