Oxford United v Hartlepool United: Team news, four changes for Pools at promotion chasers

Nicky Featherstone: Return. Picture by FRANK REID

Nicky Featherstone: Return. Picture by FRANK REID

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Craig Hignett today made four changes to the Hartlepool United starting XI for the League Two trip to Oxford United.

Carl Magnay, Nicky Featherstone, Lewis Hawkins and Luke James were all restotred to the side following Tuesday night's 2-1 home defeat to Accrington.

Jordan Richards, Josh Laurent and Rakish Bingham stepped down to the bench with Brad Walker lerft out of the 18 altogether.

Magnay returns at right-back and as skipper with Featherstone and Hawkins in central midfield.

James take the central striking role with Nathan Thomas and Jake Gray either side of him at the Kassam Stadium

Oxford welcomed back Kemar Roofe after shaking off an ankler problem as well as full-back Joe Skarz, an ex-Pools loan player, after rib damage.

Winger Alex MacDonald has recovered from tonsillitis to make thev starting XI, but Callum O’Dowda who was suffering from the same problem was 'only' named on the bench.

Oxford: Buchel, Kenny, Dunkley, Wright, Skarz, Ruffels, MacDonald, Sercombe, Maguire, Roofe, Hylton

Subs: Slocombe, Mullins, Waring, O'Dowda, Lundstram, Bowery, Roberts

Pools: Carson, Magnay, Bates, Jackson, Carroll, Featherstone, Woods, Hawkins, Gray, James, Thomas.

Subs: Bartlett, Duckworth, Richards, R Jones, Laurent, Bingham, Oates.