Bromley made the trip to the North East to face fellow in-form side Hartlepool United at the Super 6 Stadium on Saturday.

The Ravens were missing Captain Jack Holland following his injury on the stroke of half time in last week’s win over Maidstone. Jake Goodman came into the side to replace him, with Alan Dunne and Roger Johnson returning to the squad and being named on the bench.

The Ravens started on the attack and went close just a number of seconds into the match. Luke Coulson latched onto an excellent through ball from Frankie Raymond in the box, but after crossing towards the six yard box, Hartlepool managed to clear at the second attempt.

It was Pools who would have the first real chance though, and it fell to Myles Anderson. After some slick build up play, the ball fell to Anderson’s feet and he took a touch before stinging the palms of David Gregory with an angled drive at goal.

As United began to take more control in the game, a Liam Noble free kick delivery was met just inside the box by the head of Peter Kioso, but he could only plant an effort wide of Gregory’s goal.

However, it would be on the half hour mark that Bromley would take the lead, perhaps against the run of play. A George Porter long throw caused havoc in the Hartlepool penalty area, and the hosts could only partly clear the danger before the ball fell to Marc-Anthony Okoye on the corner of the six yard box and he finished with aplomb, thundering a volley across the diving Scott Loach and into the net.

The goal would give Bromley some renewed confidence and they nearly went two up within a matter of moments. After picking up the ball in his own box, Omar Bugiel breezed through the challenge of Danny Amos before driving at goal. With JJ Hooper in support, the former fed the ball to the latter, but there was just a tad too much on the through ball, and Hooper was unable to control it.

However, on the stroke of half time, the Ravens faithful would witness something quite remarkable. A Gregory goal kick was nodded into the path of Frankie Sutherland by Bugiel, and the former laced a first time pass towards the run of Coulson. Coulson nonchalantly flicked the ball over a defender with his first touch before sending a delightful dipping volley over the reach of Loach in what is surely a frontrunner for goal of the season. The strike was of such quality, it even drew applause from the frustrated Hartlepool United faithful.

The first chance of note of the second half fell Bromley’s way, to Goodman in particular. The Bromley centre back looked to send a simple clearance upfield from just inside his own half, but it turned into a lot more than that, as it had Loach backpeddling towards his goal, only to see the ball drop wide of goal.

The in-form Nicke Kabamba reminded Bromley of his threat however, and soon after Goodman’s chance, received the ball in the box and found room to turn, but could only fire a low effort wide.

The mercurial Coulson continued to threaten for Bromley and after orchestrating a slick counter attack, he threaded a pass through to Porter, but he could only curl a shot wide of the mark.

On 64 minutes, the Ravens should have seen themselves three goals to the good. An outstanding one-two routine between Bugiel and Porter saw the former lay the ball into the path of the latter, but with the goal at his mercy and Loach stranded, Porter could only blaze an effort over the crossbar.

Pools went close on 73 minutes and perhaps should have scored. The persistent Liam Noble found Nicky Weatherstone on the edge of the six yard box, but he could only pass a tame effort straight at Gregory.

Substitute Luke Molyneux then put a cross on a plate for Kabamba, but sliding in at the far post, he was a fraction of a second too late, as the ball had already evaded him and rolled out for a goal kick.

However, the home side would grab a goal back just a short while into six minutes of added time. Noble, who had been a constant threat, picked up the ball 20 yards from goal and send an absolute rocket past the unmoved Gregory and into the net to give his side hope in the dying moments.

However, the Ravens held out for victory and claimed a valuable three points on the road.

Bromley XI: Gregory, Sutherland, Raymond, Bugiel (Higgs), Okoye, Goodman, Porter (C) (Philpot), Wood, Brindley, Coulson, Hooper (Johnson).

Unused substitutes: Sarpong-Wiredu, Dunne

Attendance: 2985 (55 Bromley supporters)

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