Hartlepool caretaker boss says changes are needed in squad for next season
Caretaker boss Matthew Bates believes change is needed at Victoria Park '“ regardless of whether or not he remains at the club.
Having navigated Pools away from relegation danger, Bates is keen to land the managerial job on a permanent basis and has met with Raj Singh and Craig Hignett to put forward his case.
And while there may be a change in the dugout, Bates believes that change is also needed on the pitch.
“I think that’s needed, to be honest,” he admitted.
“For Hartlepool to finish where they’ve finished, says there has got to be big change.
“I’ve got my thoughts on that and we’ll see what happens in the next week or so.
“I don’t know what’s happening with myself and I don’t want to start saying who should and shouldn’t be here, when I’m just the caretaker.”
While he may still only be in caretaker charge, Bates has made no secret of his desire to land the job on a permanent basis.
He was coy on a meeting held with the top brass, but admitted his name remains in the frame as Pools look to appoint.
“I came out a few weeks ago and put my hat in the ring,” he said.
“It’s something I want to do longer-term and I don’t think anyone can really question the job I’ve done, so we’ll see what happens.”
While Bates is keen for swift change, one player who he feels could have an impact in the long-term is Aaron Cunningham.
The youngster made his first team debut in the draw with Torquay but was given his marching orders with just under 10 minutes remaining.
And that red card caught many – including Bates – by surprise.
But the Pools boss still believes that Cunningham could have a bright future in the game.
“My view was that it was a good tackle,” Bates admitted.
“I was about five or six yards away and I thought it was a good tackle.
“But I have to watch it back, I don’t really want to say too much on it.
“I didn’t say anything after the game because I don’t want to take that out of a young lad because I like that.
“I don’t even want to say he’ll learn from it because I don’t really want him to, because I thought it was a good tackle.
“We’ll go again with him and he’s someone who I think has a good future in the game.”