National League team of the season: Do any Pools players make the list?

It feels like a lifetime ago since Hartlepool United closed up the season with an emphatic home win over now League Two side Salford City.

Friday, 31st May 2019, 9:00 am

But given some quiet consideration, our Pools writer Liam Kennedy has eventually got around to doing his National League team of the season.

Do any Hartlepool players make the cut? Here's his 1-11, with five subs to boot.


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Goalkeeper - Luke Southwood - Eastleigh

Put in easily the best individual performance of the season against Hartlepool earlier this year in a defeat on the south coast.

Only spent the second half of the season, from Boxing Day, on loan at the Spitfires from Reading but did more than enough to show he's got a bright future in the game.An Under-20 World Cup winner with England, as understudy to Newcastle's Freddie Woodman, two years ago.Defender - Carl Piergianni - Salford City

A big strong defender with the right amount of needle in his game to see that he'd walk into any side at this level and probably even above.

Left one on Luke James on the final day, but you could tell he was just letting the Pools man know he meant business.

Defender - Shaun Pearson - Wrexham

At 30, he's no spring chicken and has been around the non-league block a long time.

But this season he was an absolute tower of strength at the heart of a defence which proved to be one of the leanest in the National League.

Defender - Marvin Ekpiteta - Leyton Orient

A big, strong defender who made his breakthrough year in 2018/19.

An England C cap came his way this year after some impressive shows helped guide the O's to the National League title.

Midfielder - Craig Eastmond - Sutton United

London-born, London-trained. You can take the boy out of Arsenal, but football rarely beats Arsenal out the boy.

Oozes class, goes both ways and scores goals, too. A class above this level.

Midfielder - Darren Carter - Solihull Moors

The former Sunderland and Birmingham City midfielder is in the autumn of his footballing career but strolls through games at this level.

A joy to watch him run a game from the middle, while the rest of the Solihull team does the physical stuff for him.

Midfielder - Jobi McAnuff - Leyton Orient

A distinguished career, which has included spells at West Ham, Watford, Wimbledon, Crystal Palace and others finally looks to be coming to an end at Orient.

Rewarded with a new contract after promotion, McAnuff was a leader on the park and off it in their promotion charge. He was one of the stand outs last year, even during Orient's struggles.

At 37 the Jamaica international still looks like he's got more to give, out wide or tucked in the middle.

Midfielder - Luke James - Hartlepool United

I know what you're thinking, James is no midfielder.

But he could easily slot in out wide in a four - and the strikers are just too good, with too many goals to leave out.

Sure he'd play anywhere for Pools if you asked him. His work-rate is unparalleled at this level. A workhorse. And now an England C international.

Striker - Paul McCallum - Eastleigh (now Solihull)

Having done the business for Dulwich Hamlet on the non-league scene McCallum got his big break with West Ham. A number of loan spells at the likes of Hearts and Portsmouth did not bring a return.

Heading back to the non-league scene the 25-year-old has come alive again. Few can live with his talent at this level. Just scores goals.

Striker - Danny Rowe - AFC Fylde

A goal machine, plain and simple.

Like a throwback player, plays in slow motion, but in a very good way.

Has the ability to just drift, then chop the ball back to glide around players, popping up absolutely anywhere on the park. Shoots from anywhere, too. A joy to watch in full (slow-mo) flow.

Striker - Macauley Bonne - Leyton Orient

The best striker in the division, will finally be back in the Football League.

Rated at more than £1million by his club, if they hang on to him you wouldn't write off automatic promotion to League One.


Goalkeeper - Nathan Ashmore - Ebbsfleet United

A bit of a big lad, but that doesn't have an impact on his performances. Scott Loach ran him close for the bench, mind.

Midfielder - Liam Noble - Hartlepool United

Might be a Marmite player at Pools but cannot argue with the fact his 13 goals made him the top-scoring midfielder in the division.

Midfielder - Tom Walker - Salford City

Another who oozes class, the former Bolton man was taken out the side as Salford went more direct.

Striker - Adam Rooney - Salford City

A quality frontman for the National League. Highest paid player in the division.

Striker - Alfie Rutherford - Havant & Waterlooville

At 20 he stepped in where Nicke Kabamba stepped out at Havant. Knows where the net is.