‘The town has got behind them’ – Exeter City boss Matt Taylor keen to end Hartlepool United's 'impressive' home record

Once again, Victoria Park has become a place opponents are wary of visiting – just ask Exeter City manager Matt Taylor.

Saturday, 25th September 2021, 7:00 am

Hartlepool United have won 18 of their last 20 league matches at Victoria Park and currently boast the best home record in England.

They are also the only League Two side to have won all of their home matches so far ahead of Saturday’s visit from in-form Exeter City (3pm kick-off).

The Grecians are six games unbeaten heading into the match but their manager feels his side will have to be at their very best in order to end Pools’ spectacular run of results at The Vic.

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Exeter City manager Matt Taylor (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

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“You look at what [Hartlepool] did last season, their play-off campaign and the way they got promoted,” Taylor told the Exeter club website.

"Certainly their home form is something that has been so impressive. They're a really strong team at home and you can sense the town and the community has got behind them as well.

“It sounds strange when you're not going to the biggest ground or the biggest set of supporters in the world but whether it's five, six thousand this weekend, making a lot of noise and backing their team – we've got to understand what it will feel like to start with and what the game will feel like.

“We've got to implement our style on the game and hopefully quieten down the expectation of everyone who is there.”

In December 2019, Pools beat Exeter 1-0 in the FA Cup second round replay at Victoria Park – the most recent meeting between the two clubs.

And the fact Dave Challinor’s side are yet to taste defeat at home in League Two comes as added motivation for Taylor.

“That's an impressive stat and every manager wants that stat,” he added. “You want to be able to rely on your home form and Hartlepool can certainly do that at the moment.

"Maybe that motivates us a little bit more to be the difference and be a better team than what they've faced so far this season.

"The record suggests how difficult it's going to be and we're not underestimating that. We go into the game under no illusions as to how difficult the test will be but we're a good team ourselves in good form.”

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