Hartlepool Utd rest ahead of trip to Doncaster Rovers

John Hughes in the dugout against Leyton Orient. Picture by FRANK REID
John Hughes in the dugout against Leyton Orient. Picture by FRANK REID
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JOHN Hughes has rewarded his Hartlepool United squad with a two-day break ahead of Saturday’s trip to league leaders Doncaster Rovers.

Pools are unbeaten in seven, a run which is likely to see Hughes crowned League One’s manager-of-the-month for February.

On Tuesday they were 3-0 victors over Crewe Alexandra and travel to the Keepmoat Stadium knowing another victory could take them to within three points of safety.

The players will not reconvene at Maiden Castle until tomorrow in preparation for Saturday’s game, Hughes admitting he has handed responsibility over to his men.

“I talk with the boys after every game and see what they think is the best way to prepare for the next game,” the 48-year-old revealed.

“You have to trust your players in that respect.

“If they think a couple of days at home with their family will put them in the right frame of mind for the weekend then so be it.

“The games are Saturday-Tuesday right now and they are for the next few weeks.

“All we’re doing is recovery work really, everything else is in place.

“I’m just helping them along, keeping things ticking over.

“I’ve been a player and you know what works best, I’m putting that faith in them and it’s going okay right now.”

Meanwhile, Hughes will today discover the extent of the calf injuries to Simon Walton and Evan Horwood picked up during the midweek win.

And the Scot will be hoping the prognosis on Walton is not too serious, especially given the turnaround in his form.

“I substituted Simon a couple of weeks back and the fans weren’t happy with that,” said Hughes.

“I’m delighted with that because it shows he has won them over.

“He’s been playing fantastically well.”