Match Report | Blyth Spartans 0-0 Hartlepool United FC | Pre-Season Friendly | 2023/34


Arguably Graham Fenton’s side’s hardest test of pre-season finished in a goalless draw against Vanarama National League side Hartlepool United.

Neither side was able to break the deadlock throughout the match, but both teams came close with chances at oppositive ends.

The returning Jack Bodenham and Finn Cousin-Dawson returned to the starting line-up following their respective returns to the club. They started the game alongside Harrison Clark, Rhys Evans, Curtis Round, Nicky Deverdics, Jordan Hickey and four trialists.

The first effort of the game was an early attempt for the visitors that was held well by Spartans’ trialist ‘keeper.

The Spartans wall blocked Matty Dolan’s free-kick from 25-yards before Mani Dieseruvwe’s header fell wide of the mark from a recycled ball worked out to the right flank.

Spartans then had the best chance of the game as Hickey made a surging run into Pools’ half resulting in the ball being worked out to a trialist who was denied one-on-one against Pete Jameson.

Pools continued to attack through the direct run of Chris Wreh, who was shut down by an immense tackle from Bodenham

Deverdics was then disposed of in the midfield which allowed Dieseruvwe in on goal, but his shot was struck wide.

Round was then called into action as he was able to stop an attack by cutting out an enticing through ball deep into the Spartans’ defensive half to latch onto their attackers.

The final action of the half saw Deverdics play a delightful ball into the penalty area for an onrushing trialist, however, Jameson was alert to claim the ball.

Half-time: Blyth Spartans 0-0 Hartlepool United

Rio Joisce was the only change for the second half as he replaced a trialist.

It was a slow start to the second period from both sides that saw the first chance created by Hartlepool 10 minutes in, but the effort on goal was saved sharply by the Spartans’ trialist goalkeeper.

Sadly Joisce was forced off 19 minutes into the second half after coming off worse following a big tackle.

Bodenham and Round linked up in possession before a searching ball forward sent a trialist in on goal, but the resulting shot was hot wide of the target.

The best chance of the half for Blyth came as Deverdics and a trialist were involved in a flowing move forward which eventually saw a ball get played into the box and a header was saved by Pools’ substitute ‘keeper Dixon before Spartans’ second effort was blocked at the near post.

Hartlepool piled the pressure on at Croft Park in the final 10 minutes as a deflected effort bobbled wide before an inviting corner flashed across the face of the goal but a breakthrough could not be found.

Full-time: Blyth Spartans 0-0 Hartlepool United

Blyth Spartans | Trialist, Evans, Clark (Trialist 75’), Cousin-Dawson, Bodenham (Trialist 75’), Round, Deverdics ©, Hickey, Trialist 1 (Joisce 45’ (Trialist 5, 64’)), Trialist 2 (Trialist 4, 54’), Trialist 3 (Trialist 6, 64’)

Hartlepool United | Jameson (Dixon 45’), Trialist 1, (Dodds 45’) Onariase, Dolan © (Pruti 45’), Burton (Ferguson 45’), Patterson (Finney 45’), Crawford, Wreh (Cook 45’), Dieseruvwe (Hastie 45’), Trialist 2 (Grey 45’), Trialist 3 (Umerah 45’)

Listen to Graham Fenton’s post-match interview on BSAFC TV via YouTube

The Spartans next face off against Marske United on Tuesday 25th July, with a 7:30pm kick-off at Croft Park.

Tickets for the fixture are priced at £8 for adults, £4 for concessions and 11-16 years and students and under-10s are admitted for free when accompanied by a paying adult.

Posted by Ben Lightfoot