Hartlepool Utd’s Holden will learn in time for Crawley Town clash

Darren Holden plays the ball out of defence. Picture by FRANK REID
Darren Holden plays the ball out of defence. Picture by FRANK REID

NEALE Cooper admits that Darren Holden will learn from his tortuous 90 minutes at Leyton Orient.

The 19-year-old was up against Moses Odubajo at Brisbane Road and from the off the wideman tore past the Pools left-back on countless occasions.

Odubajo, himself still just 19, was by far the best player on the park during his side’s 1-0 win and duly landed the man-of-the-match award.

Cooper accepts that Holden was faced with a talented opponent, but nonetheless feels the teenager must learn from the outing.

“Darren was up against a very good player,” said the Pools boss.

“It’s a learning curve and hopefully he’ll take something from it because it was a very tough night for him.

“He just had to get to the boy quicker and not give him as much space at times.

“If the ball drops don’t give the lad time to get it under control and get at you.”

Holden, however, was afforded precious little protection and it was no surprise when Odubajo’s right boot served up the winning goal for Ryan Brunt two minutes after half-time.

The academy graduate will keep his place in the defence for this weekend’s visit of Crawley Town, and Cooper says his youngster will bounce back.

“Darren has been terrific the last few games since he came into the side,” he said.

“He’s been a real plus point for me.

“He’s been positive going forward and good at the back.

“So he’ll be fine, I’m sure of that.”