Match preview: Saints v Hartlepool United

Friday 21st July

Tomorrow St. Johnstone welcome English National League side Hartlepool United to Perth as Tommy Wright continues preparations ahead of the new Scottish Premiership season.

The visitors have had a mixed bag so far in pre season after beginning it with comfortable victories over Billingham Town (6-0) and Dunston UTS (7-0) before a 2-1 loss to Harrogate. Hartlepool's last friendly was a home encounter against our opponents from last week, Sunderland, as a last minute winner from Jeremain Lens sealed a 2-1 win for the Mackems in front of 4,728 spectators.

The club were founded in 1908 and can boast Brian Clough as one of their former managers - Hartlepool, or "Hartlepools" as they were known then, was Clough's first managerial appointment in 1965 before he went on to enjoy hugely successful spells at Derby County and Nottingham Forest later in his career.

The 'Monkey Hangers' are managed by former Middlebrough defender Craig Harrison, who was appointed manager at Victoria Park in the summer following five hugely successful seasons at Welsh side The New Saints. In Wales he led 'TNS' to six league championships, four Welsh Cups and three League Cups, and last season ended Ajax's 44-year-old world record for the longest winning streak in top-flight football with 27 victories in a row in all competitions.

St. Johnstone go into the match full of confidence following back to back wins against Sunderland and Rangers in the past six days. A Steven MacLean strike and a David Wotherspoon double dispatched of the English giants at McDiarmid Park last Saturday, while recent signing Callum Hendry scored an 80th minute winner against Rangers at Murray Park on Tuesday afternoon.

Tomorrow's match will be a last opportunity for Tommy Wright to assess trialist Romain Habran before deciding whether to offer the 23-year-old Frenchman a contract at McDiarmid Park.

On the injury front, Brian Easton should return to the side tomorrow while club captain Steven Anderson also comes into contention. Goalkeeper Alan Mannus is expected to take the place of Zander Clark, who went off with concussion in last Saturday's match with The Black Cats.


Adults - £10 Concessions (over 65s and 13-18 year olds) - £5 Kids aged 12 and under - FREE

Season Tickets are valid for this match.

Only the Main Stand is open with Hartlepool fans encouraged to enter through the north end of the stand.

Serveries 1 and 2 both open.


Would all car drivers please note that due to the ongoing construction work being carried out in and around the environs of McDiarmid Park the east access gate will be closed to all vehicles prior to the match tomorrow. Entry to the stadium is via the main gate only.

However, the east gate will remain accessible for pedestrians and will be used as a car exit at the end of the match. Please be patient and allow extra time for access and egress.