Antony Sweeney’s side arrive on the back of four straight league defeats having slipped out of the top half of the table and come up against a Vale side sitting fifth and with a number of ex-Pools connections both in the dugout and on the field.
But one player who hasn’t featured for Hartlepool in his career, but will still garner the attention of some, is goalkeeper Lucas Covolan.
Brazilian Covolan scored the dramatic injury time equaliser for Torquay United in last season’s National League promotion final and hardly endeared himself to Pools supporters with his antics thereafter.
But while Pools invariably got the better of Covolan in the penalty shootout that day in June, Sweeney may have to be alert to the goalkeeper’s presence in the Pools box should his side be leading in the closing stages.
“It’s not something I’ve mentioned,” said Sweeney.
“Whether it’s been mentioned from the players' confined dressing room I’m not too sure.
“Football sometimes throws up these intricacies. If Brad James had come up in the last minute and scored a header and saved a couple of penalties I’d be fully expecting him to act like Lucas Covolan did.
“Sometimes you’ve got to take things on the chin. They’re a lot easier to take when you come out victorious.
“I suppose from the outside it adds another element to the game but from our point of view he’s a good goalkeeper who plays for Port Vale that we’re going to try and put some goals past.”