Luke Williams gets on the scoresheet as Hartlepool United lose 2-1 against Middlesbrough under-23s

Luke Williams was back on the scoresheet for Hartlepool United as they were beaten 2-1 by Middlesbrough under-23s in a behind closed doors friendly at Rockcliffe Park.

Monday, 29th March 2021, 6:48 pm

After drawing 1-1 at Stockport County in the National League on Saturday, Pools boss Dave Challinor wanted to take a closer look at the players who didn’t feature at Edgeley Park.

Boro’s youngsters took a two goal lead thanks to Connor Malley and Isaac Fletcher before Tom Crawford’s long free-kick released Williams who finished well to reduce Pools’ deficit with 10-minutes to play. Despite a strong second half showing, Challinor’s side had to settle for a narrow defeat.

Williams’ goal will come as another boost in the midfielder’s road to recovery after he made his first National League start for Pools against Woking just over a week ago.

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Luke Williams was on the scoresheet for Pools.

And the Hartlepool boss will have been pleased with the manner of the goal after paying particular attention to set-pieces in training.

"We did a bit on our set-pieces on Friday but we’ll be looking to do more of that because that’s what can make the difference in those tight games towards the back end of the season,” Challinor told The Mail.

“It’s a game where some of our lads need 90-minutes, 70-minutes and it’s an opportunity for us to look at potential options for this season and next season too.”

Two unnamed trialists, a left-back and a winger, made up Pools’ starting line-up at Rockcliffe on Tuesday afternoon with Challinor still assessing his options regarding further signings before the April 22 registration deadline.

Pools XI (4-3-3): Ravas; Trialist, Odusina, Cooper, Donaldson; White, Crawford, Williams; Ofosu (Macdonald), Trialist, Bloomfield

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