Hartlepool show patience in hunt to find new manager

Pools owner Gary Coxall
Pools owner Gary Coxall

Hartlepool United will not be rushed into appointing Craig Hignett’s successor.

The club believe that should they have to wait for the right man for the job, they are willing to do so, even if that means caretaker Sam Collins taking the team for this weekend’s League Two clash with Stevenage.

While the club are keen for the process not to drag out, they will not dive in

As previously reported, Pools have been flooded with applications for the post, since Hignett was given his marching orders on Sunday, 11 months after taking the reins.

Approaches have been made by coaches from the continent, as well as experienced heads from north and south of the border.

Ex-Sunderland and Rangers midfielder Alex Rae, previously manager of Scottish sides Dundee and St Mirren, was yesterday linked.

So too was former Newcastle United keeper Steve Harper, although it is understood the club may well be looking for a manager with previous experience, given the way that things turned out under former Middlesbrough assistant Hignett.

And the feeling among the Northern Gas & Power Stadium hierarchy is that while they are keen for the process not to drag out, they will not dive in to appoint anyone, just for the sake of it.

The club have already started drawing up a shortlist of potential candidates, having received more than 100 CVs in the last three days.

And while a number of applicants have already been spoken to by the decision-makers at the Vic, no concrete call has been made on who will step in replace Hignett, despite rumours of Dave Jones drawing up his backroom team in preparation for his appointment.

Jones is understood to be already on that list, but the club are still wading through the scores of applications that have arrived at their doorstep.

And although the club were keen to have a manager in place for Saturday, they understand the serious nature of the next step in the process, given that Pools Football League status could well be on the line. As a result they will take their time to consider their next move.

As the days ware on it appears as if Collins, previously Under-21 boss, will take the team against the Boro. And in these times of uncertainty the club are confident in Collins’ ability to guide the club through choppy waters, in the short-term at least.