Sam Collins to tinker with Hartlepool United side for Accrington trip

Pools caretaker boss Sam Collins. Picture by FRANK REID
Pools caretaker boss Sam Collins. Picture by FRANK REID
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CARETAKER boss Sam Collins is looking to “freshen” up his side for tonight’s match against Accrington Stanley.

Struggling Pools dropped to third bottom of Sky Bet League Two at the weekend with the 2-1 defeat to Luton Town at Victoria Park.

But Collins is adamant his side can bounce back to winning ways at The Store First Stadium tonight (KO 7.45pm) against a Stanley side 18th having lost their last two matches.

Collins revealed within minutes of the Hatters defeat that he had his team in mind and admitted he is looking to tweak his starting line-up.

“Straight after the final whistle [on Saturday] I had thoughts in my head for Accrington,” Collins said.

“I wrote a team down straight after the game and I might look to freshen things up a little bit.

“Shape wise it won’t be too different to Exeter City away but we have to go there, be positive and look to get a good result.”

Pools were unchanged for only the second time this season for the Luton match but that looks set to change.

Midfielders Kieran Green, 17, and Brad Walker are pushing for starts, while livewire forward Connor Smith could also be drafted in to the starting line-up after coming on as a sub against the Hatters.

Collins is confident that whichever side he chooses, they can pick up three crucial points.

“Tonight is another big game but I feel like we can go there and get three points,” said the 37-year-old player coach.

“There wasn’t a great deal in the Luton game, it was two poor lapses in concentration and a poor decision by the referee.

“Luton scored with their first shot as well and that is the way it goes sometimes.

“If you get chances you have to take them.

“That is football and it won’t ever change.

“It is down to us, can we take those chances and keep the back door shut?

“Football is a simple game, it gets complicated when people don’t do the right things and that is what has cost us.

“Everyone is going to make mistakes, that will always happen.

“If they are giving 100 per cent then I can accept it, they gave that on Saturday, but those little lapses have cost us two goals.

“I thought we would get back in the game but then the second kills us and our penalty came too late.

“It was our own doing, the reason we lost the game.

“I said afterwards though that there was nothing we could do, instead we had to prepare properly for tonight and it is another big game and one which we have to pick some points up.”

Collins has no new injury worries for the trip to Accrington.

Winger Jack Compton will be out with a knee injury until January, while defender Stuart Parnaby also misses out again because of an ongoing knee problem.