Manager latest: Matthew Bates believes he is in driving seat for Hartlepool United job
Matthew Bates believes his results since taking over at Hartlepool United put him in pole position for the permanent role.
But he admits he is far from confident of being handed the reins at Victoria Park, despite guiding the club away from the National League relegation zone.
As revealed in the Mail last week, Bates is one of FOUR candidates on the club hierarchy’s shortlist to take over full time.
And the final-day win at Tranmere, and the manner in which Pools did it, has given those at the top food for thought.
Bates and the other three possible new managers, who have all been interviewed in the last seven days, will find out this week whether they have been succesful.
Caretaker Bates knows he has done everything within his power to land the post, but that the decision is also out of his hands.
“I’ve done all I can, I think I’ve got to be in for the leading role – I don’t think I can do any more,” said Bates following the Prenton Park victory.
“If it was a play or a show then I’m sure I’ve got the leading role! But this is football and it’s a bit different. Let’s see what the next couple of days brings.
“I would take this record when I took over, a lot of stats get thrown around but they back up what I’ve done. I can’t have done any more and whatever happens, I can walk away with my head held high.
“Am I confident of getting the job? You can never be confident in football. I want to take this club forward and I don’t see myself as a National League manager for the next ten years. I want the club to have a successful team.”
Because he feels like he has given all he can to the job, Bates believes that if he is not given the role on a full-time basis he can walk away with his head held high.
He also thinks the last few months will not have done his reputation any harm either.
“I have done all I can, if it wasn’t football then I would have a great chance and if it’s not me then I can walk away with my head held high,” he continued.
“What I’ve done will look good on a CV if it comes to applying for jobs. I will walk away with pride and a smile on my face if I have to move on.”
While fans and experts mull over the potential candidates with the likes of Jason Ainsley, Alun Armstrong and even Lee Clark mentioned in passing in recent days, Bates thinks he is the best suited to take the club forward.
“I’ve been here a few years now and I know what needs to be done, but it’s not about that – it’s what I think as a manager,” he said.
“If I was at another club I would still be doing the same things as a manager, have the same philosophies and belief in what I want to do.
“One thing I will do and have done is make hard decisions. It’s my way or no way. You have seen that with the performances of the players and making substitutions at half-time. You only get one chance in management so you have to make the most of it.
“I will relax the next few days, I’m very proud and pleased of what I’ve done. I’m not a stats man, but my win ratio is as good as any manager here in the last 15-20 years.”