Rodney’s no fool, as new boss oversees a 1-0 win for Pool
Hartlepool: 1 Ryan Catterick, 2 Jordan Richards, 3 James Martin, 4 Nat Skidmore (Elliott 56), 5 Harley Wise, 6 Ben Pollock, 7 Kenton Richardson, 8 Nicky Deverdics, 9 Devante Rodney (Smith 46), 10 Josh Hawkes, 11 Jake Orrell
Unused Subs: 12 Isaac Assenso, 13 Ben Dudzinski, 16 Jack Turnbull
Rotherham: 1 Laurence Bilboe, 2 Jack Osborne, 3 Lewis Murr, 4 Tom Maguire, 5 Tom Rose, 6 Fabian Bailey, 7 Darnell Bailey-King (Atherton 50), 8 Mason Warren (Wiles 42), 9 Akeel Francis, 10 Sam Martin, 11 Joshua Kayode
Unused Subs: 12 Harry Fidler, 14 Jiovanni Sterling, 17 Reece McGinley
Devante Rodney’s 1st half strike is enough to take victory on a chilly day in Durham as new Pool boss Dave Jones looked on. Hartlepool thoroughly deserved the win in their final group game of the Central League Cup.
The hosts dominated play thoughout the game and created the 1st meaningful chance after just 4 minutes. A corner from the left hand side eventually broke to Kenton Richardson who shot wide of the right hand post.
Rotherham’s first attempt on goal come in the 7th minute Mason Warren tried to catch out Ryan Catterick in the Pool’s goal by shooting from the half way line, but his effort was well off target.
Despite the home side’s dominance and good possesion play, it was the visitors who created the best chance of the game up to that point. Akeel Francis found himself on his own about 18 yards out with Catterick off his line, but his weak effort of a lob dropped well wide of the left hand post.
A few moments later a good cross in from Jordan Richardson met the head of Nicky Deverdics who forced Laurence Bilboe in the Millers goal to make a great save. Soon after, Deverdics found himself in space 20 yards from goal, but his left footed shot sailed wide of the upright.
Hartlepool were almost made to pay for wasted chances when when a neat little inside pass from Sam Martin fell to Francis just inside the box, but he poked his shot high over the crossbar.
Jake Orell caused Rotherham plenty of problems on the left flank throughout the 1st half and following another good run he found himself in the box. His shot was well saved by Bilboe.
The defining moment of the game came on 35 minutes. Devante Rodney burst into the box and his shot was saved by Bilboe, but he was only able to parry it straight back into the path of Rodney who slammed the ball into bottom left corner. A deserved Hartlepool lead, 1-0.
Mason Warren was unfortunatly forced off through injury in the 42nd minute for Pool, replaced by Ben Wiles.
Pool continued to knock on the door before the halftime whistle as they tried to push home their advantage. Richardson sailed a his shot over the bar, followed by another effort from the youngster which brought a good save from Bilboe down to his left.
HT: Hartlepool 1-0 Rotherham
Chances in the 2nd half were few and far between for both sides. on 50 minutes, Connor Smith, who replaced the goalscorer at half time, had a shot straight into the arms of Bilboe. Moments later Josh Hawkes also had a shot from 18 yards, this effort ended wide of the left hand post.
Smith provided real energy down the left for Hartlepool in 2nd half and lot of play went through him. But Hartlepool were again almost made to pay for not taking their chances when, on 84 minutes, Joshua Kayode’s shot from the right hand side of the 18 yard line slammed straight into the back of a blue shirt. In the final minute of the game both Kenton Richardson and Josh Hawkes both had tame efforts which Bilboe easily caught.
A dominant Hartlepool took all 3 points in this Central League Cup fixture. That puts them 3rd in the league of five, 1 point behind north-east giants, Newcastle. This really should have been a more comfortable watch for new manager Jones though, but he’ll undoubtedly be chuffed with what he saw, especially from Rodney in the 1st half.
FT: Hartlepool 1-0 Rotherham
All the best from the North-East,