Hartlepool v Walsall preview

Team news for Saturday's League One clash between Hartlepool and Walsall at Victoria Park.

Last Updated: 22/03/13 at 14:34

James Poole: Faces a late fitness test

James Poole: Faces a late fitness test

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Hartlepool striker James Poole faces a late fitness test ahead of his side's home game.

Poole, who has started in the last 12 matches, took a kick to his left leg during the midweek defeat at Oldham and is doubtful.

Middlesbrough loanee Charlie Wyke is likely to return to the starting line-up if Poole fails to make it.

Wyke made way at Oldham for Steve Howard, who made his first start since late January having struggled to get back in the side following a hamstring injury.

Boss John Hughes could be forced to make one or two other changes as several of his squad are struggling with a sickness bug.

But midfielder Ritchie Humphreys is expected to be back in contention after missing out at Oldham due to a calf strain.

Teenagers Jordan Richards and Jack Baldwin remain sidelined with respective season-ending knee injuries.

Promotion-chasing Walsall will have to make at least two alterations at Victoria Park.

Boss Dean Smith will change an unbeaten line-up for the first time in six games to counter the loss of top scorer Will Grigg and goalkeeper Aaron McCarey.

Grigg, who has 19 goals to his name this season, is away on international duty with Northern Ireland although he is set to miss their World Cup qualifiers against Russia and Israel due to a hamstring problem.

McCarey was this week recalled from his loan spell at the Banks's Stadium by parent club Wolves, with highly-rated Manchester United stopper Sam Johnstone subsequently brought in on a deal until the end of the season.

Johnstone will now start at Victoria Park as the Saddlers aim to close the three-point gap on the play-off places.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

League One Fixtures

Tuesday, 31 March 2015
19:45
Bradford v Chesterfld  
Wednesday, 01 April 2015
Coventry v Leyton Or  
Friday, 03 April 2015
15:00
Crewe v Crawley  
Gillingham v Fleetwood  
Oldham v Bristol C  
Port Vale v Colchester  
Preston v Rochdale  
Scunthorpe v Peterboro  
Walsall v Notts Co  
Yeovil v Chesterfld  

Footer 365

Harry Kane to make first England start against Italy

Roy Hodgson has confirmed that Harry Kane will make his first start for England in Tuesday night's friendly with Italy.

Two Chelsea fans summoned to appear in court over claims of racist chants

Two men summoned to appear at Westminster Magistrates Court in May following claims of racist chants at St Pancras Station.

Arsenal are repoortedly keen to sign Liverpool's Raheem Sterling

Arsenal are interested in signing Liverpool's Raheem Sterling, with the winger set to reject his offer of a new deal.

Mail Box

Can Wenger Coach Young Players Anymore?

One Mailboxer wonders whether Wenger has still got ability to bring through young talent. Plus £50m for Sterling, stop being matey with footballers and Blackpool...

Forget About Flair And Play Like Greece

'Forget about flair and play like Greece' is one outsider's advice to the England national side, while an Arsenal fan wants to sell Theo Walcott to get Marco Reus.

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company