'˜We owe him a performance' - Scott Loach believes Hartlepool United have let manager Craig Harrison down
Scott Loach believes Hartlepool United's players owe Craig Harrison a performance - because he showed faith in them, when others turned their back.
Pools travel to Chester this evening for the re-arranged National League encounter in the North West.
Loach & Co have won just once in their last 13 games in all competitions and are without victory in their last nine.
With the club sliding closer and closer to the fifth tier trapdoor, the keeper knows tonight is a must win.
But there is much more than points riding on this one, according to the former Watford man.
Pride is at stake, says Loach. And he reckons it is time for the Pools boys to step up to the plate, and take some heat off their manager, who believed in them when other clubs did not.
“We need to win,” said the 29-year-old goalie.
“We owe the gaffer and his coaches a performance.
“He has trusted me. He brought me to this football club when I had very few options.
“The lads are on that pitch because the gaffer has given them the opportunity.
“I am not just saying it - for a National League club we get looked after. We are lucky.
“We need to give something back and not take things for granted.”
Loach is one of the more experienced heads in the Pools squad - put lightly, he’s been there and done that.
And he knows exactly what it feels like to be staring National League North football in the face, just as he did last campaign with York City.
“The last thing we want to do is get dragged into it. I’ve been there before and it’s not good,” he said, with Pools currently sitting just six points above the bottom four.
“We need to win for ourselves and for the fans. One win will kick us on again.
“I really don’t think, apart from maybe the Dagenham game at home, anyone who has watched us could say we are a really good team.
“We have not shown how good we can be this season.
“We have got nothing to be afraid of - we need to go on a run to pull ourselves away from the bottom.
“It’s all about forgetting what has gone before, being resilient and dealing with what is in front of us.”
Off field issues have clouded things at Pools of late.
It was only last Thursday that the players and staff at the club found out they would be getting their pay for January this week.
Loach says Harrison has been brilliant at diverting the stress of the situation away from the dressing-room.
“The gaffer is a very good man manager,” he said.
“If there was something going on he’d be the first to tell us.
“He has done all he can for us - he has given us time away, had us in to talk about things.
“They can’t legislate for what happens on the pitch.
“As players we need to grow a pair and get on with things. We just need to make sure we get a win. And sometimes all it takes is that win for things to take off.
“We did it at Guiseley at the start of the season then went on a run. It wasn’t pretty to watch but it helped kick start our season.
“We need that again. A win at all costs.”