PREVIEW | Chester v Hartlepool United
Craig Harrison’s Hartlepool visit the Swansway Chester Stadium this Saturday in the Vanarama National League, in the Blues’ final fixture of 2017.
For the Blues, it was a disappointing 2-0 Boxing Day defeat on Tuesday – enduring a nightmare first half with Guiseley scoring twice – Lathaniel Rowe-Turner being sent off for Chester and losing Ross Hannah to injury.
The ‘Monkey Hangers’ have struggled to find their form in recent weeks, winless in their last five league games – with their last victory coming in November over FC Halifax Town.
Hartlepool have never played against Chester at this level, in what is their first campaign in the fifth tier. Similar to fellow relegated outfit Leyton Orient, the Pools have struggled with the National League this season – and sit in 15th place heading into the encounter.
Former-TNS boss Harrison also saw his side crash out of the FA Trophy to Northern Premier League side Workington Town this month. Scott Allison netted eight minutes from time to send the Cumbrian-based outfit into the next round.
ONE TO WATCH
Jonathan Franks – Striker
In the absence of Jake Cassidy, Franks has provided the majority of the Pools’ goals this season – with six strikes so far.
Born in Stockton-on-Tees, Franks began his career at Middlesbrough – before loan spells at Oxford United and Yeovil Town eventually led to the 27-year old’s first spell at Victoria Park. Franks spent three years at Hartlepool, making 129 league appearances before moving to Ross County in 2015.
A fan favourite amongst ‘Poolies’, Franks returned to the North East this summer in a raft a new summer signings made by new manager, Craig Harrison.
Known as a tough and influential striker, Franks has represented England at all levels from under-16 through to under-19s.
Kick off at the Swansway Chester Stadium tomorrow is 3pm. Ticket prices can be found here
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