Dave Jones is working hard to implement his philosophies and ideas at Hartlepool United

Dave Jones (right) with assistant Kevin Cooper. Picture by FRANK REID
Dave Jones (right) with assistant Kevin Cooper. Picture by FRANK REID

Dave Jones is challenging himself as well as his players and staff at Hartlepool United.

The vastly-experienced boss is trying to “implement” his ideas and philosophies as quickly as possible at the Northern Gas & Power Stadium.

We’ve emphasised that every training session we do is geared for the game – how we are going to play, how we are going to shut people down, how we set traps.

And the 60-year-old has brought in trusted lieutenants, Kevin Cooper and Alex Armstrong, to work alongside him, and development coach Sam Collins and pre-rehab coach, Stuart Parnaby, who were already part of the club’s backroom staff.

“We came in two weeks ago, took training, guided by Sam Collins and we will be for certain things for a while yet until we get to know everyone,” said Jones.

“We are trying to implement a way for the players to understand why we do things.

“We’ve emphasised that every training session we do is geared for the game – how we are going to play, how we are going to shut people down, how we set traps.

“It’s all geared to the game.”

Jones said the work has been intense on the training ground, but also off the field too.

The former Stockport, Southampton, Wolves and Sheffield Wednesday boss relies heavily on sports science and detailed analysis, not just of the opposition, but his own players.

“I don’t know why it didn’t happen before, maybe they didn’t have the equipment,” he said.

“We’ve come in with a lot of equipment and to be fair to the guys that have been here before me, my crew have been with me a long time and they know how I work.

“It’s nothing new, it might be to the players, but not for me, it’s the norm for me.

“We’re looking at everything, like the diets, how they train, their weight programme, their personal programmes, everything.

“A lot of it was in place, it just needed upping, and the players to understand what they are doing.”

Jones was today looking to see his side bounce back from last week’s 3-1 defeat at Newport when they host Yeovil Town at the Northern Gas & Power Stadium.

He said that he won’t look for excuses about the state of the Rodney Parade pitch and has examined his and his staff’s performances too.

“We didn’t earn the right to play,” he said. “It was just as bad for them, I have no complaints.

“I could use load of excuses but I won’t, we have to learn from it and move on.

“I won’t harp on about it because it gives the players an excuse, I’m not here to do that.

“We have no excuses, the onus is on us, we have to take responsibility, take account of what we do.

“It’s not just the players, it’s us [the coaching staff] too, did we pick the right team? We’ll always question ourselves.

“Did we do everything right? Maybe we didn’t, that’s what we look at.

“We are not frightened to do that.

“I want to be challenged as much as I challenge them.”