Date: 28th February 2009 at 9:43pm
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THE U’S drew 1-1 with Hartlepool at the Weston Homes Community Stadium, on Saturday afternoon.

Paul Lambert`s side failed to make it two wins in a row, following their midweek exploits against Stockport.

Scott Vernon had opened the scoring for the home side, before Michael Nelson headed home an equaliser.

The U`s made a trio of changes from Tuesday`s game, with Anthony Wordsworth and Vernon replacing the injured Dean Hammond and Clive Platt, the latter of which was able to make the bench. David Perkins also gave way for Lewis Gobern.

Lambert`s men started positively and pressed for an early goal from a number of set pieces.

Central midfielder Kem Izzet fired a long-distance volley just wide of Arran Lee-Barrett`s upright, in the U`s first attempt on goal.

Pool came close to breaking the deadlock as a free-kick from the left was met by the head of Sam Collins, but Jimmy Walker brilliantly palmed the ball away.

Shortly later the visitors broke away and U`s full-back Marc Tierney was needed to block Ritchie Jones` effort on goal.

On the half-hour mark U`s winger Mark Yeates skilfully turned his man before releasing a curling shot which Lee-Barrett tipped over the bar.

Two minutes later Simon Hackney saw his powerful effort saved by the Pool ‘keeper at the second attempt.

The away side had the ball up the other end a while later and Michael Mackay, after skipping past a number of U`s challenges, had a penalty appeal waved away.

With half-time close the U`s took the lead, as Tierney`s lofted pass was flicked on cleverly by Wordsworth towards Vernon. The front-man managed to hold off his man and then tuck the ball away past Lee-Barrett, for his 4th goal of the season.

Vernon could have got a second before the break, but his effort, from Tierney`s cross, was well blocked.

After the interval, the U`s looked for another goal to kill the game off and Yeates saw a free-kick hit the wall.

Paul Reid denied Pool an equaliser shortly later, as he flung himself in to block Mackay`s effort.

Hackney could have, and perhaps should have, doubled the U`s advantage, but he dragged his low effort wide when through on goal.

Just past the hour mark Gobern gave way for Steven Gillespie as Lambert made his first change.

A while later Nelson did well to head home, from a corner, to bring the visitors level, as the U`s failed to defend the set-piece.

The U`s could have been back in front but Wordsworth saw his weak effort go wide of the Pool goal.

Substitute Gillespie did well to meet a Tierney cross; however, he failed to get any power into his header.

The U`s were forced to settle for a point in the end, ahead of Tuesday`s tough away trip to Huddersfield.

U’s: Walker, Maybury, Reid, Baldwin, Tierney, Gobern (Gillespie), Wordsworth, Izzet, Hackney (Perkins), Yeates, Vernon (Platt).


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