Hartlepool boss demands repeats of stunning display

Craig Harrison would love MORE of the same from Hartlepool United after witnessing his biggest win since since taking charge at Victoria Park.

Wednesday, 22nd November 2017, 5:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 12th December 2017, 3:12 am
Nicky Deverdics celebrates his goal last night.

Pools moved up to a season’s best 11th place in the National League thanks to a 4-0 blitzing of strugglers Halifax Town.

Goals by Nicky Deverdics, Liam Donnelly, Rhys Oates and Conor Newton provided the perfect response to Saturday’s insipid display against Aldershot.

And Harrison hopes this will now be the norm from Pools as they look to break into the top seven before the turn of the year.

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“The players took a lot of criticism after Saturdays when no-one played well,” Harrison told SportMail. “They were all outstanding here.

“This will give them great self-confidence as players and as a team.

“But it’s only one 4-0 win at this moment in time – we’ve got to make sure it’s not the only one.

“If we go and win 4-0 three or four times between now and Christmas then we’ll move closer to where we want to be.”

Harrison said last night’s display now has to be the standard that Pools can’t drop below.

“Saturday was not acceptable, we all know that,” he explained. “The performance last night showed what we can do.

“That has to be a benchmark.

“And that’s not just me or my staff saying it – the lads talked about it themselves in the dressing room.

“We have an intelligent, honest, hard-working bunch of players and they know that’s the standard they have to show week-in week-out.”

Harrison believes that tempo proved the key ingredient for Pools.

The side, freshened up by the inclusion of Michael Woods, Newton, Oates and Louis Laing, looked a team transformed.

“We spoke about it at training on Sunday and Monday and before the game how tempo is so important for us, certainly at home.

“We started really strongly and the supporters got 100% behind us, they were fantastic.

“It was nice to give them the money’s worth because we didn’t do that on Saturday.

“When we play with tempo we are a better team and it showed. Little things like taking quick throws, short free-kicks and so on.

“The boys were fantastic.”

The win was achieved without leading scorer Jonathan Franks, who was feeling his hamstring.

The manager hopes he will be fit to return to the squad for Saturday’s visit to Ebbsfleet.