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Hartlepool boss Dave Challinor hails character of his cup heroes

Hartlepool United

Hartlepool boss Dave Challinor heaped praise his National League side for their will to win as they overcame League Two Exeter City in extra-time to book their berth in the third round of the FA Cup.

Exeter were reduced to 10-men late on before Josh Hawkes’ strike sealed Tuesday night’s 1-0 second round replay win at Victoria Park and a trip to Oxford United in the New Year.

Former AFC Fylde boss Challinor told Pools TV: “I enjoyed that performance massively. Even if we hadn’t won the game, what they gave really gave the fans something to cheer about so it’s a great night and that’s something we hope to replicate and have more of them back here.

“It was a proper cup tie but a tight game. It was a bit similar to Saturday and you think you’re going to get one chance to win it.

“When you go in to extra-time tactics go out of the window a little bit and it’s more about wanting to keep on going because they were feeling as bad as we were.

“One moment of quality won us the game and I thought our game management beyond that was outstanding – we played out the game well but still looked a threat at the same time.”

Their run to the third round is estimated to have netted Pools upwards of £150,000 and Challinor added: “The finances are huge for the club and we now have a big game going to Oxford who are flying in League One so we will go there with a real opportunity and we’ll enjoy it when it comes around.”

A delighted Hawkes retweeted the FA’s highlights of his goal within hours of the final whistle.

Images courtesy of hartlepoolunited.co.uk and YouTube

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