WREXHAM manager Bryan Hughes was left with lots to think about after Wrexham were well beaten by Hartlepool.

Hughes' side took the lead at Victoria Park but a poor start to the second half half left the visitors up against it, and they failed to recover as the Reds suffered a disappointing 4-2 defeat.

And for the third time in six games this season, Wrexham finished a match with 10 men as Jake Lawlor was shown his second red card of the campaign.

Despite going ahead, Wrexham didn't perform well and couldn't live with Hartlepool who inflicted a second defeat of the season on the Reds.

Hughes made six changes from the side that started Saturday's stalemate with Barnet.

Defenders James Jennings and Michael Chambers picked up ankle injuries in the draw and missed out along with Luke Young, Luke Summerfield, Paul Rutherford and Mark Harris.

That meant Mark Carrington, Jake Lawlor, Adam Barton, Akil Wright, Ben Tollitt and Bobby Grant came into the Reds' team.

There was an early chance for Pools as Michael Raynes headed wide from Liam Noble's cross while Christian Dibble pulled off a smart save to deny former Wrexham trialist Gime Toure.

Hartlepool continued to press and Mark Kitching's shot was saved by Dibble, but Wrexham were dealt a blow in the 17th minute when JJ Hooper hobbled off and had to be replaced by Leighton McIntosh.

Wrexham hadn't got going but the Reds finally prised a scoring opportunity as Devonte Redmond's shot from Grant's lay-off was comfortably saved by goalkeeper Ben Killip.

However, Wrexham took the lead after 38 minutes.

The ball reached Wright after Tollitt was fouled and the midfielder's deflected effort found the back of the net from outside the area.

But the lead was shortlived as Pools equalised after Dibble pulled off a great save to deny Noble.

That led to a corner from which Toure headed home to out Pools back on level terms in the 42nd minute.

It got worse for Wrexham four minutes into the second period as Hartlepool took the lead through a penalty.

Shaun Pearson was adjudged to have fouled Noble in the area after Dibble saved Cunningam's shot and Noble converted the resulting spot-kick.

Wrexham were left fighting an uphill battle as Hartlepool increased their lead on 52 minutes with Noble's low drive finding the back of the net.

The manic start to the second half continued as Wrexham pulled a goal back three minutes later when Lawlor was pulled down in the area.

Grant took the penalty and he made no mistake to give Wrexham hope of getting something out of the game.

Harris was brought on for Tollitt but Wrexham were dealt another blow as Hartlepool made it 4-2 on the hour mark as Toure converted Noble's cross.

The afternoon didn't get any better as Wrexham were reduced to 10 men in the 64th minute when Lawlor was shown a straight red card following a foul on Jason Kennedy.

Wrexham almost got themselves back into the contest as Pearson's shot was blocked following a corner and after the Reds regrouped, the captain's effort was tipped over the bar by Killip

Pools had a couple of half chances to extend their lead but the damager had already been done as sorry Wrexham were well beaten.

Hartlepool (4-4-2): Killip; Kioso, Kerr, Raynes, Cunningham; Kitching, Mafuta, Noble, Kennedy (Featherstone 75); James, Toure. Subs not used: Bale, Donaldson, Hawke, Holohan.

Wrexham (4-2-3-1): Dibble; Barnum-Bobb, Lawlor, Pearson, Carrington; Wright, Barton; Grant, Redmond (Young 77), Tollitt (Harris 59); Hooper (McIntosh 17). Subs not used: Lainton, Rutherford.

Referee: David Richardson.

Attendance: 3,462 (311 from Wrexham).