Craig Hignett blasts Hartlepool United’s criminal defending against Leyton Orient

Leyton Orient forward Ollie Palmer finds the bottom corner to put O's 2-1 up at Hartlepool United (p

Leyton Orient forward Ollie Palmer finds the bottom corner to put O's 2-1 up at Hartlepool United (pic: Simon O'Connor). - Credit: Archant

Victoria Park boss always thought the second goal of Saturday’s encounter would be crucial and it proved to be the case

Hartlepool United boss Craig Hignett conceded his team defended like criminals against Leyton Orient on Saturday.

The Pools went one up on the stroke of half time when Leyton-born Josh Laurent volleyed home Lewis Hawkins header.

It was the least the hosts deserved, however Sandro Semedo levelled in the 55th minute before Ollie Palmer netted a brace to give O’s a 3-1 win.

“I’m really disappointed because the game was there to be won,” Hignett told the official club website.


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“We played alright in the first half, got our goal and gave ourselves a good platform for the second half.

“But to defend like we did was criminal – you can’t give goals like that away no matter who you’re playing.

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“We had a few chances and didn’t do well enough at that end and we didn’t defend well enough at the other end – that’s the story of the game.”

Before Semedo’s equaliser, the former Middlesbrough player knew the next goal at Victoria Road would be crucial.

The O’s winger got it before Palmer gave Orient the lead after twisting and turning inside the area before finding the bottom corner.

Hignett had hoped the visitors might collapse had they gone behind by more than one goal at Hartlepool.

But Alberto Cavasin’s players responded with two quick goals and by this point had plenty of confidence and it was no surprise when they extended their advantage in the 70th minute later.

“The second goal in the game was always going to be massive and if we got it I thought they might have collapsed, but they got it and got their tails up, while we went in to our shells,” said Hignett.

“I thought the defending was so poor for all three goals but you have to punish teams when you get the chances – we didn’t and we got punished ourselves for that.”

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