Hartlepool Utd boss to decide which players will leave the club

Andy Monkhouse celebrates scoring the first of his two goals against Crawley Town. Picture by FRANK REID
Andy Monkhouse celebrates scoring the first of his two goals against Crawley Town. Picture by FRANK REID
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JOHN Hughes will today begin the all-important task of determining which players will be offered new deals – and who will be shown the door.

Andy Monkhouse – one of those out of contract – staked his claim for an extension with both goals during Saturday’s 2-2 season finale at Crawley Town.

Monkhouse, as well as team-mates Neil Austin, Sam Collins, Evan Horwood, Ritchie Humphreys, James Poole and Nathan Luscombe will this week discover their fate, along with several players on the fringe of the senior set-up.

Hughes is set to go on holiday later this week but will be giving his recommendations to chief executive, Russ Green, and chairman, Ken Hodcroft.

The Scot, though, appears keen to maintain the services of many of those players.

“A lot of them are under option so let’s sit down, go and get the work done and hopefully see a lot of them next year,” Hughes told SportMail.

Decisions, though, are still to be finalised.

“I cannot tell you who is leaving, we don’t know yet,” he went on.

“A lot have stepped up to the demands of being a winning team, creating a culture and installing a good work ethic.

“They have been positive since I came to the club.

“I really commend them for their effort and commitment amid the uncertainty over where they will be next season.

“You can see the leadership qualities in there.”

Hughes, whose relegated side slipped to 23rd following the weekend draw at Broadfield Stadium, was still cheered by the performance.

Having fallen behind to Jamie Proctor’s 70th-minute opener, the visitors responded with a quick-fire double inside four minutes.

First Monkhouse rose to steer home a Luke James’ centre before the scorer smashed a stunning second to give his side the lead.

But Proctor stole a point for Richie Barker’s men one minute from time with a deflected effort from inside the area.

See Monday’s Mail for full story