Hartlepool United frustrated as U’s take point

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MANAGER John Hughes has hatched a survival plan for Hartlepool United – but he admits the stalemate with 10-man Colchester United was two points dropped.

The Scot had devised a projected points return from each of the 11 remaining matches prior to last night’s game.

And, while the goalless draw took Pools above Bury and to within seven points of safety, Hughes says his overriding emotion today is still one of disappointment.

“I’m bitterly disappointed, not with the performance but with the two points dropped,” he said. “We’ve looked at the games coming up and have put points on what we hope to get.

“If we can match that then I’ve said we’ll still be in there battling away. But in this league we can all beat each other. Win on Saturday against Yeovil and this might become a good point.”

Pools were frustrated by 10-man Colchester last night. The visitors were reduced in number at the end of the first half when striker Jabo Ibehre was shown a straight red following a dangerous lunge on Neil Austin.

But Pools were unable to break down the dogged visitors despite spending the bulk of the second half camped in opposition territory.

The closest they came to breaking the deadlock was an 18-yard hook from James Poole which lobbed harmlessly over the crossbar on 50 minutes, while Charlie Wyke was denied inside the six-yard area by a desperate block from defender Magnus Okuonghae.

Hartlepool: Flinders, Austin, Collins, Hartley, Horwood, Baldwin (Luscombe 31), Walton (Sweeney 90), Humphreys, Poole, Franks (Howard 80), Wyke. Subs Not Used: McHugh, Monkhouse, Holden, James. Booked: Walton, Humphreys.

Colchester: Walker, Wilson, Eastman, Okuonghae, Garmston, Bond, Clifford (White 81), Porter (Thompson 74), Ibehre, Massey, Morrison (Ladapo 66). Subs Not Used: Cousins, David Wright, Bean, Compton. Sent Off: Ibehre (44). Booked: Morrison, Porter, Wilson.

Att: 3,148 Ref: Geoff Eltringham (Tyne & Wear).