Nicky Featherstone: 'Hard not to panic’ following Hartlepool United's pre-season defeats against Spennymoor Town and Gateshead

Hartlepool United captain Nicky Featherstone felt Saturday’s 4-1 defeat at Gateshead highlighted some key issues that need addressing ahead of the League Two season.

Sunday, 25th July 2021, 4:00 pm

Pools have now lost twice to National League North opposition in the space of a week following Tuesday night’s 1-0 defeat against Spennymoor Town.

And the midfielder admitted that the panic has started to creep in, although he’s still confident the side will be ready come August 7 against Crawley Town.

“It’s hard not to panic a little bit after the last two results,” he said. “I’ve had bad pre-seasons before and generally they don’t tend to have much say on the season.

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Nicky Featherstone in action during the Gateshead FC v HUFC game. Pre-season friendly. 24-07-2021. Picture by Bernadette Malcolmson

“[The Gateshead game] is a run of fitness to be honest, that’s the only positive we can take. It’s highlighted the transition from being in possession and then one pass killing us and putting them through.

“We started well and were playing some good football.

He added: “Losing any game is disappointing, the way we lost this one is even more disappointing. We could go through all four of their goals and pretty much three of the four came about after we were in good possession of the ball and then one pass puts them through.

"It’s something to work on after a couple of disappointing results and performances.

“Pre-seasons are tough. Ultimately it comes to the first game of the season and they don’t really play much part in how the season goes. As long as we manage to take something away from this game and work on it then it shouldn’t impact the first game of the season.”

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