Former Town striker Dieseruvwe scores the winner as Halifax lose at Hartlepool

Former Halifax striker Mani Dieseruvwe dealt The Shaymen's play-off hopes a blow as his penalty earned Hartlepool a 1-0 win.
Victoria ParkVictoria Park
Victoria Park

This was only Town's second defeat in nine games following a run of seven wins in eight, so a bump in the road is certainly forgivable.

Just over a week after the memorable win against Chesterfield, Halifax were brought crashing back down to earth and reminded that they still have a lot of work to do if they're to seal a top seven finish.

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Town made the more calm, composed start, seeing more of the ball and winning the early midfield battles.

Hartlepool, on the back of their 7-1 mauling at Gateshead, looked a little nervy and struggled to get into a rhythm, with sloppy passes or poor control letting the down and not exactly helping to get the home fans back on side.

Unsurprisingly, top scorer Dieseruvwe was the focal point of their attacks, with Pools often going from back to front to find him, but his first chance came on the deck rather than in the air as he was played through one on one with Sam Johnson, but the Town keeper made a good save having raced off his line.

That was the first chance of note, and by far the biggest of the first-half, 23 minutes in.

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Dieseruvwe was engaged in a physical battle with former team-mate Jamie Stott for every long ball played up to him, which was much more interesting to watch than the match itself, which was too often played at a pedestrian pace.

Flo Hoti dragged a shot wide after half-an-hour for Halifax's first effort, with their first shot on target coming through Rob Harker ten minutes later.

His and Max Wright's efforts both went straight to Pools keeper Pete Jameson.

This wasn't the effervescent, exuberant Town from last week's win over Chesterfield, The Shaymen were more cautious and safety first.

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Defensively sound but ineffective going forward, certainly compared to last Wednesday..

Hartlepool weren't exactly all guns blazing either though and the game strolled rather than raced to half-time goalless.

All of which left you wondering how much longer someone with Andrew Oluwabori's form and flair would be sitting on the bench.

Tylor Golden cleared a deflected Dieseruvwe shot off the line shortly after the break as Hartlepool came out with increased intent.

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The game was gradually coming to life, with Aaron Cosgrave's last act before being substituted for Oluwabori almost putting Town ahead from a rapid counter-attack, but he couldn't get a shot away after being played through by Max Wright.

The game was opening up and there was more tempo and pace to the contest after the stodgy first 45.

Both teams looked decent when they got in and around the others' penalty area, with substitute Luke Summerfield firing straight at Jameson after a one-two with Hoti.

But after a trip on sub Terrell Agyemang by Golden, Dieseruvwe scored his 22nd of the season from the penalty spot.

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Halifax had their own penalty appeal rejected when substitute Adan George was unable to reach Adam Senior's muscued shot on the stretch, which Town felt was because he was being pulled back.

After that, Town dominated the remainder of the game but clear chances eluded them.

Hartlepool: Jameson, Stephenson, Waterfall, Parkes, Ferguson, Featherstone, Crawford, Grey, Cooke (Cooper 89), Duffus (Agyemang 61), Dieseruvwe. Subs not used: Dixon, Onariase, Oduroh.

Scorer: Dieseruvwe (pen 72)

Shots on target: 3

Shots off target: 4

Corners: 5

Halifax: Johnson, Golden, Senior, Stott, Galvin, Thomson-Sommers (Summerfield 53), Hunter, Cosgrave (Oluwabori 58), Hoti (George 81), Wright, Harker. Subs not used: Evans, Jenkins.

Shots on target: 3

Shots off target: 6

Corners: 2


Referee: Jamie O'Connor

Town man of the match: Adam Senior. Defended very well and made some crucial blocks and clearances.

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