Matt Gray savours Sutton’s ‘outstanding’ display in win over Hartlepool

Sutton tasted victory for the second league game running (Andrew Matthews/PA) (PA Archive)
22:31pm, Tue 14 Sep 2021
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Sutton boss Matt Gray hailed his side’s performance as “outstanding” after a battling 1-0 win over Hartlepool.

And Gray was extremely satisfied with how his side held on for all three points as Dean Bouzanis pulled off a couple of great saves.

Defender Ben Goodliffe bundled home the only goal of the game in the first half as Gray’s side secured back-to-back league wins.

“I thought we were outstanding tonight,” beamed Gray. “We were absolutely brilliant.

“We were completely dominant first half.

“It was a little bit like the Oldham game where we dominated large spells and we didn’t get the second goal that day either. It would have been good to settle down my nerves a bit.

“Deano has made a brilliant save in the second half. They’ve piled loads of bodies forward. They’ve thrown absolutely everything at us in the final stages, but we’ve stood strong and got another thoroughly deserved three points.

“I’m disappointed we haven’t added to the goal that we’ve scored but hopefully that will come.

“Our set-piece delivery was excellent. We were a real threat from set-pieces and could have had three or four from them alone.

“We’re just concentrating on the next game and keeping our performance levels high and if we do that the results will come.”

Hartlepool boss Dave Challinor was booked for remonstrating with the fourth official late on.

And on the referee’s performance, he said: “You need a strong referee and I don’t think we had that. I don’t think we got a decision from minute one.

“You know what you get when you come here. They have a goal-keeper who kicks it miles, they have a team full of players six-foot-plus.

“You’ve got free-kicks and long throws being winged in from everywhere and you have to deal with those things.”

It was Hartlepool’s third straight away defeat in League Two and Challinor added: “We’re disappointed. You have to expect what you’re going to get when you come here.

“You’ve got to deal with that and ultimately we’ve not dealt with it on one occasion and the ball ends up in your goal and you lose the game as a result.

“You know you have to weather the storm and as the game progresses it may open up.

“The key fact is we didn’t keep the ball out of the net at one end or put it in the net down the other.”

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