Hartlepool United caretaker manager Antony Sweeney hails 'key' player Ben Killip

Antony Sweeney has been delighted by the response of the Hartlepool United players since he took caretaker charge on Friday.

Tuesday, 15th October 2019, 1:05 pm
Updated Tuesday, 15th October 2019, 2:28 pm
Hartlepool United caretaker manager, Antony Sweeney  during the Vanarama National League match between Aldershot Town and Hartlepool United at the EBB Stadium, Aldershot on Saturday 12th October 2019. (Credit: Paul Paxford | MI News)
Hartlepool United caretaker manager, Antony Sweeney during the Vanarama National League match between Aldershot Town and Hartlepool United at the EBB Stadium, Aldershot on Saturday 12th October 2019. (Credit: Paul Paxford | MI News)

The former Pools midfielder helped Pools claim a 3-0 win at Aldershot on Saturday afternoon but was quick to deflect the praise onto the players rather than himself.

Josh Hawkes, Gavan Holohan and Nicke Kabamba got the goals at the EBB Stadium but is was a performance at the other end that particularly impressed Sweeney.

“I’m really pleased because everyone did their bit but the key for me was the goalkeeper,” admitted the Pools caretaker.

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Ben Killip in action for Hartlepool United.

“Without Ben [Killip] making the saves at the times he made them, that’s the key in the result. It provided us with the opportunity to keep the lead and then get the second goal which pretty much killed the game even though it didn’t feel like it at the time.

“The last few minutes was a lot more comfortable than it could have been because Ben kept the ball out of the back of the net. He’s only got one job, to keep the ball out of the net hasn’t he?”

Killip has been the subject of some criticism after a shaky start to his Hartlepool United career but has since started to turn things around.

“Fair play to Ben because he’s come under some criticism in his Hartlepool United career but his performance today was outstanding and without him they would have scored a few goals,” Sweeney added.

“It’s one of the best goalkeeping performances I’ve seen this year and hopefully he can kick-on from here.”