22 September 2022

Keith Curle takes charge of Hartlepool for the first time against Gillingham

22 September 2022

New Hartlepool interim manager Keith Curle will take charge of the team for the first time in the Sky Bet League Two match against fellow strugglers Gillingham.

Curle was drafted in after Pools parted company with Paul Hartley and his assistant Gordon Young, the club second bottom of the table and without a league win.

First-team coach Antony Sweeney was in charge for the midweek Papa Johns Trophy tie against Morecambe, with Curle watching on from the stands at the Mazuma Stadium.

Veteran Scottish forward Chris Maguire could come into contention following his free transfer after being released by Lincoln, but club captain Nicky Featherstone (ankle) remains sidelined.

Gillingham are on the back of a nine-game winless run through all competitions, so boss Neil Harris could consider changes.

Defender Elkan Baggott, on loan from Ipswich, has been called up for international duty with Indonesia.

On-loan Portsmouth midfielder Haji Mnoga, though, turned down the opportunity of a call-up from Tanzania Under-23s to focus on the Gills.

Forward Scott Kashket continues to be monitored on a groin issue, while midfielder Olly Lee (tendinitis) and midfielder Dom Jefferies (hamstring) continue their own recovery.

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