Lewis Alessandra joins Brad Walker in Hartlepool United spotlight

Lewis Allessandra
Lewis Allessandra

Brad Walker is not the only Hartlepool United star enjoying a new lease of life in different surroundings.

The midfielder has captured the headlines and man of the match plaudits after being sent back to fill in for the injured Matthew Bates at the heart of the Pools rearguard.

It’s all right playing well, we need to start winning games, hopefully starting tomorrow


However, the early exit of Bates at Luton opened the door for another player to come on and shine – Lewis Alessandra.

The 28-year-old came on in midfield at Kenilworth Road where he played his part in the team’s revival after the horrific start which saw them 2-0 down inside 13 minutes.

Alessandra linked up well with Nathan Thomas, Michael Woods and Padraig Amond as Pools put the Hatters on the backfoot, the former Rochdale attacker going just wide with a left-foot shot in the second half.

And Alessandra was even better last Saturday against one of his former teams, Plymouth.

He may be more accustomed to playing higher up the pitch, but he looked bright in the centre and was involved in much of the better play from the hosts.

Alessandra will almost certainly start there tomorrow at Colchester, where Pools hope to end a 10-match run without an away victory.

“I found myself out of the team [after the home draw with Yeovil],” he told SportMail.

“The injury to Batesy meant I got on early doors at Luton.

“It’s been a bit foreign to me playing in the centre of midfield, it’s not even the number 10 role.

“I feel as though I have done OK.

“I suppose the attributes I have as player do lend themselves to the position.

“At this stage of the season, all I care about is points.

“It’s all right playing well, we need to start winning games, hopefully starting tomorrow.”

Ending that aforementioned 10-match sequence will not be easy against another high-flier.

Tomorrow’s visit to the Colchester Community Stadium is the fourth match in a row in which Pools take on a side chasing promotion.

Alessandra, who made his Pools debut when the two sides met on the opening day of the season, says he is respectful, rather than fearful of the U’s who are seventh in League Two.

“They won on Tuesday night against Wycombe,” said the forward. “But no-one in this league really worries me.

“If we go and play they way we can play, then we can do it.

“I feel as though we’ve dominated the last couple of games, we just need to get it right in both boxes.

“We need to tighten up at our end and hopefully have a bit of luck in front of goal at theirs.

“We’ll be going there knowing we need points, we are looking over our shoulder a little bit, something I don’t think we thought we’d be doing four or five games ago.

“But that’s football for you.”

Another promotion favourite will be coming to the Northern Gas & Power Stadium next Saturday, when Pools host Exeter.

However, 18th-placed Crewe come first at the Vic on Tueday, while Pools visit fellow strugglers, Notts County, on March 11.

“It’s going to be a tough couple of weeks,” said Alessandra. “We have matches coming up against teams in and around us in the table

“I’m confident all the lads can pull through it, start putting points on the board and getting away from the position we’re in now