JOHN Hughes says he is “desperate” to bring success to Hartlepool United’s loyal supporters, writes Richard Mennear.
Pools are without a win at home in the league since September and have lost the last six matches at Victoria Park.
Hughes said despite poor results on the pitch, the fans have retained their good spirit and sense of humour.
The Scot reserved special praise for the 127 fans that made the long trip down to Shrewsbury Town on Saturday, which saw Pools come from behind to secure a 1-1 draw.
Hughes said: “Especially at this time of the year, just after Christmas, and most of them will be trying to save up I’m quite sure, or their wives will be saying “right come on you get some overtime done, we want to go on our summer holidays”.
“But that just shows you the loyalty to the football club.
“Ever since I have come down here to the North East the fans have been fantastic.
“There is a great spirit amongst them and a great sense of humour and I am desperate to try and bring success for them.”
Hughes was speaking ahead of a double-header of home games against Colchester United on Saturday and AFC Bournemouth, next Tuesday.
The Scot said his Hartlepool side needs to “get the monkey off the back” at home after picking up just six points from 12 games - including the solitary 2-0 win against Scunthorpe United way back in September.
Weather permitting, Colchester head to Victoria Park on the back of nine straight league defeats, including a 2-1 defeat at home to Scunthorpe United last weekend.
That is in stark contrast to Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth side which is unbeaten in 18 league and cup matches.
Hughes said: “They are massive games and we need to get that monkey off our back at home.
“We just need to create a momentum and a spirit but it is up to the players to give the supporters something to sing and dance about and to get behind the team and the fans have done that.
“We played Stevenage and should have beaten them and the fans applauded the team off the park.
“We also played Preston and did enough to get something out of the game, so it has not all been doom and gloom.
“It hasn’t been great at times, but it has been resolute and if we can win a couple of home games, who knows?
“It will give us confidence and momentum that is for sure.”