Things might be getting tight at the bottom of League Two, but Trevor Carson is refusing to panic.
The Hartlepool United keeper says confidence has flooded back into the dressing-room at the Northern Gas & Power Stadium after the club’s creditable, hard-working draw at promotion-chasing Portsmouth at the weekend.
And for that reason, the Northern Irishman is certain that Pools can turn around their current plight over the festive period.
“It has got a little bit tighter at the bottom,” admitted the goalie, whose side are just two points off the fourth tier relegation spots.
“But I would rather have us get a point on the day at Pompey and the teams around us won than we all get beat and things stayed the same.
“It meant something to us that point. It really did.
“It has given us a confidence boost ahead of a very busy period.
“We have set the bar now in terms of performance. We cannot let things slip below that now.
“If we can add quality to that commitment we showed at Fratton Park I am certain that we can kick on.”
That message has to get through to the players loud and clear, says Carson.
Producing performances like they did at Vale Park and a week later against Cambridge at the Vic will not be accepted any more, not on his watch anyway.
“The response in terms of effort, commitment and playing for the badge means we answered those questions people were asking of us,” he said.
“That is the minimum now.
“We weren’t great with the ball but we can’t let our commitment drop below that in the future.
“We put our bodies on the line for the point. We have to do that every week.”
When asked to put his finger on why things were so different on the south coast, just seven days after the Cambridge debacle, he said: “It is hard to explain the difference.
“If I knew that I would be a manager in the Premier League
“These things happen, though, we were all disappointed in the dressing-room last week.”