Hartlepool United’s Monkhouse looking for FA Cup bounce

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GOAL hero Andy Monkhouse says Hartlepool United can be buoyed by their performance against League One Coventry City and take that confidence forward into a “defining” period in the season.

The 33-year-old thundered in a powerful header, his fifth goal of the season, to cap off an outstanding team move in the 78th minute of Saturday’s FA Cup tie.

Coventry skipper Carl Baker’s wonder strike had given the visitors a deserved half-time lead before a resurgent Pools very nearly turned the game on its head with a fine display after the break

But Steven Pressley’s side have leaked goals in their home games at Northampton’s Sixfields ground, a fact Monkhouse is all too aware of, and says the showing in Saturday’s second half will give the Pools players the belief they need to cause the Sky Blues problems again.

“They are in a lot of high scoring games at Northampton, they obviously concede goals,” he said.

“I don’t know whether they’re happy playing there, but we will go there full of confidence.”

Before Pools and Coventry play again next midweek, the focus now turns back to League Two action and a trip to Cheltenham this weekend.

And Monkhouse is eyeing the busy festive period of games as a chance to shoot Pools into play-off contention.

“Most of the clubs will look at Christmas as a defining point in the season,” he said.

“If you can play five or six games and get four wins and a couple of draws you’re right up there but it works the other way as well, if you lose a couple of games you will be at the bottom.

“But we have to be positive and I don’t think Saturday did us any harm at all, we’ve gone toe-to-toe with a good League One team and we’re little disappointed we haven’t won.”

Hartlepool: Flinders, Duckworth, Baldwin, Burgess, Austin, Compton (Franks 63), Walton (Walker 83), Dolan, Monkhouse, Poole (Sweeney 46), James. Subs not used: Collins, Rafferty, Richards, Rodney. Goals: Monkhouse 78.

Coventry: Murphy, Christie, Seaborne, Jordan Clarke, Adams, Baker, Conor Thomas, Webster, Moussa (Baker-Richardson 71), Fleck, Daniels. Subs not used: Burge, Barton, Phillips, Garner, Haynes, Maund. Booked: Seaborne, Daniels. Goals: Baker 12.

Att: 2,898 Ref: Andrew Madley (West Yorkshire).