The report from our away draw at Hartlepool United.
The Bluebirds earned a valuable point on the road at Hartlepool, but it could have been more!
Manager Ian Evatt made two changes from Saturdays game against Solihull Moors, Nathan Waterston replaced by Josh Kay, with Jacob Blyth returning to the Bluebirds bench for the first time since being injured in the Furness Select game back in July.
Barrow got the game underway, and could have taken the lead just a few minutes in. A low cross was met by Tyler Smith who couldn’t quite get enough connection on the ball to direct it goalbound.
Pools had their first chance 6 minutes in, Donaldson squared the ball for Liam Noble who fired towards goal but his effort was blocked and the Bluebirds defence cleared.
It was clear within the first 15 minutes that both sides were trying to play football, Barrow stringing some passes together only for Molyneux’s cross to be cut out, before neat play by Pools saw the ball pulled back for Woods who fired well wide.
The home side had their best chance of the half after 25 minutes. Ryan Donaldson picked up the ball on the edge of the area and went on an unchallenged run into the box, finally getting a shot away which was well saved by Andy Firth in the Barrow goal. Pools had the Bluebirds penned in, and the Barrow defence had to stand strong to clear several crosses away in the next few minutes.
Josh Kay again showed fantastic strength and pace on 32 minutes to leave his man behind and close in on the Pools goal, he eventually crossed for Taylor but the Bluebirds midfielder couldn’t get the ball under control.
As the first half drew to a close Luke James won the ball back for Pools and found Donaldson who fired wide, before Mark Kitching went into the book for a late challenge. John Rooney had two efforts from range in the 2 additional minutes before the half came to an end.
Half Time: Hartlepool United 0-0 Barrow
Just like in the first half the Bluebirds started brightly and good passing play on the left just a minute in saw Lee Molyneux play a low cross, which just evaded Tyler Smith.
On 54 minutes Andy Firth set off a quick counter attack, Jack Hindle advanced into the Pools half but eventually lost control with the Pools defender putting the ball out for a Barrow throw. Barrow were controlling the game at this point and just 3 minutes later Hindle tried to play Smith in, but the Pools goalkeeper got there just in time to gather it.
Patrick McLaughlin replaced Michael Woods for the home side after 64 minutes, before Connor Brown was booked for a late challenge on James.
On 78 minutes the Bluebirds were handed a fantastic chance to take all 3 points. Jack Hindle made his way into the area and was brought down, the referee pointing to the spot straight away. Hindle got up to take it himself, but lightening struck twice for Barrow, the ball crashing back against the crossbar before it was cleared.
The game remained an entertaining affair until the end, the Bluebirds pressing for a winning goal when Tyler Smith was caught offside and Luke Burgess tried to play Jack Hindle in on goal with a clever flick.
Jacob Blyth then replaced Tyler Smith to make his competitive Barrow debut, before Jason Taylor was shown a yellow card for kicking the ball away.
After 4 minutes of added time the final whistle went, the Bluebirds happy with a point from a tough game, but knowing it could easily have been three.
Full Time: Hartlepool United 0-0 Barrow