Salford go again for FA Cup glory at struggling Hartlepool

Following a 1-1 draw at Moor Lane 11 days ago, Salford and Hartlepool must do it all again in the battle to host a third round tie with Championship high-flyers Derby County.

There was little to split the teams in the first meeting, with Stephen O’Halloran’s 23rd-minute effort cancelling out Rhys Oates’ early penalty for the County Durham side.

Since then Salford haven’t played due to a waterlogged pitch washing out Saturday’s league fixture with Whitby, while Hartlepool took a 4-0 hammering (and a 656 mile round-trip) at Portsmouth.

The result was a fourth game without a win for the League 2 side, who head into the match at Victoria Park as 3/5 favourites with Ladbrokes.

Salford are 9/2 to cause an upset, while extra-time and perhaps penalties could loom should the match finish in a draw at 3/1.

The Mancunian side sit in the upper echelons of the Northern Premier League Premier Division, but it remains to be seen whether not playing in 11 days helps or hinders the side part-owned by Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt and the Neville brothers.

Hartlepool haven’t reached the heralded third round stage for five seasons, and their form this term – currently 20th in League 2 – leaves them suspect to a potential banana skin.

Salford look great value to win against a team struggling for form and who have already been beaten seven times at home.

Repeating the first game’s 1-1 scoreline is a 13/2 chance, and with Hartlepool maintaining just two clean sheets in their last 11 home games, Salford will rightly be fancying themselves to at least get on the scoreboard tonight.

Salford are becoming television regulars this season, including their own two-part documentary, and with the TV cameras ready and waiting once more, Ladbrokes are again activating their popular Double Odds offer on first goalscorers.

Simply back a player to score the first goal at Victoria Park and if that player nets the opener within the first 25 minutes of the match, Ladbrokes will pay you out at double the odds!

Salford’s Gareth Seddon looks set to make a return from injury, and the former Fleetwood man is 8/1 to score first, and should the 35-year-old open the scoring inside 25 minutes Ladbrokes will pay double odds at 16/1. Not bad for a chilly Tuesday in December.

Full Double Odds T&Cs click here.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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