Dave Challinor has this message for Hartlepool United squad ahead of Bromley play-off clash

Keep calm and keep faith in your ability.

Tuesday, 1st June 2021, 4:28 pm

That’s what Dave Challinor will be telling his Hartlepool United squad this week as the players prepare for the biggest game of the season – Bromley at home in the National League play-offs.

Pools ended the regular season with a convincing 4-0 win over Weymouth in front of 1,700 supporters at The Vic.

Ryan Johnson, Rhys Oates, Mark Shelton and Gavan Holohan were among the scorers as Pools secured their joint biggest National League win at The Vic.

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Gary Liddle in action for Hartlepool United.

Now, though, all eyes have quickly turned to this weekend as Pools look to take another step on their quest for promotion back to the Football League.

The result saw Pools claim fourth spot in the table and set up a play-off eliminator round match against Bromley on Sunday, June 6 (2.30pm kick-off).

Ahead of the weekend, Challinor had this message for his squad.

"You have to remain calm,” he said.

"The better teams over 40-odd games finish at the top of the league but it’s not always the better teams that win the play-offs, it's the team that copes best with the situation and has a bit of luck.

"You have to cope with it and that will dictate things and what’s happened over the season and whether you want to say we’ve had some high pressure games with some importance, we’ve made individual errors and whether that’s a contributing factor in that, who knows?

"We know these games are normally tight, you just need to look at the Europa League final, it was a horrendous game where over 120-minutes there was three attempts on goal and those are two of the top sides in Europe, it can happen to the best players in the world.

"You have to remain calm and keep belief in your ability and what’s got you where you are and hopefully that sends you on the right path,” he added.

Challinor, meanwhile, hopes to have Luke Armstrong available after flu.

"Hopefully it’ll be a 24, 48 hour thing that he’ll get over.

"Worse things can happen and, as much as other results elsewhere meant our league position couldn’t change, it is what it is and hopefully he’ll be fine next week because he’s undoubtedly an important player for us."

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