POOLS DIG DEEP TO HAND GILLS A MASSIVE MIDWEEK TRIP
HARTLEPOOL boss Matthew Bates hailed his side’s defensive resolve after they dug deep to earn a precious replay against Gillingham.
Pools captain Liam Noble wasted the best chance to put his side into the second round for the fourth time in six years, shooting straight at Gills goalkeeper Tomas Holy from 12 yards when unmarked in the box. But despite the frustration of not completing an unlikely smash-and-grab raid in Kent – Bates was more than satisfied with the shift his side had delivered.
“We set up to frustrate them with our shape and it worked,” he said. “To come away to a League One side, a team who have won two of their last three games 3-0 and 4-0, to limit them and then have the best chance of the game is very pleasing.”
Holy produced a top save from Ryan Donaldson and was equal to Nicky Featherstone’s shot from range.
Gillingham’s best chance came 15 seconds after the break, but Brandon Hanlan’s shot wide.
Gillingham manager Steve Lovell said: “They did their jobs better than we did ours today; that sums up the game.”