Antony Sweeney disappointed Hartlepool did not hold on for victory



Posted Sunday, March 12, 2023 by PA

Antony Sweeney disappointed Hartlepool did not hold on for victory

Antony Sweeney thinks Hartlepool need time to reflect on a point against Northampton that could end up being important in the battle to stay in the EFL.

Cobblers boss Jon Brady raged afterwards that Pools’ opening goal scored by Josh Umerah was not ruled out for offside eight minutes before half-time.

Brady was also angry referee Thomas Kirk did not send Hartlepool defender Euan Murray off after he wiped out Jack Sowerby in the second half.

But Northampton did claim a point in their push to secure promotion courtesy of Sam Hoskins’ headed equaliser with nine minutes remaining.

That kept Northampton fourth and left Hartlepool, who have now drawn the first three matches under new manager John Askey, sitting just a point above the relegation zone.

Hartlepool first-team coach Sweeney said: “It has been a tough season. The gaffer has come in and tried to be a little more organised, to get bodies in the right areas. He is working with two previous managers’ players.

“He would prefer a different shape but that will have to be parked. What we play now is what benefits the players we have now. We have 10 games now in what is now a little mini season.

“There was a lot going on. Both teams had chances. We struggled to get the momentum we had in the first half. I’m disappointed we didn’t hold on, especially in the manner we conceded. Come the end of the season hopefully it will be a valuable point for us.

“As we stand here now, seeing the results, we have to think this is two dropped being at home and being in front. We should have defended better.

“But Josh has been crucial for us, his goals have kept us in games. The struggle today is he hasn’t had many games, we had to leave him on the pitch to maximise him to try to get that opportunity to score. He will be crucial in our last 10 games as well.”

Northampton boss Brady was even more frustrated after witnessing the decisions he totally disagreed with.

Brady said: “The first goal was completely offside. It was so disappointing from the officials. I asked him at half-time, and we are going to see him now. Umerah and Dan Kemp were two yards offside. It is not a goal, it shouldn’t be a goal.

“It really is frustrating to swallow that, two weeks in a row we have been hit hard.

“And for their player to forearm smash Jack Sowerby in the eye, and he had to come off because he couldn’t see out of his eye.

“Our media people are saying the crowd is laughing at the first goal not being offside, and then they can’t believe their own player hasn’t been sent off.

“We feel like the world is against us, but you can see the spirit from the boys.

“Pools have turned it round and they are fighting to survive, the last two results have got draws.

“We had a lot of chances on target, worked their keeper pretty hard, made some good saves the boy from Leicester (Jakub Stolarczyk), Lee Burge had a couple and tipped one over the bar.”

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