Hartlepool manager Craig Hignett speaks of his shame following racism controversy at Victoria Park

He’s faced plenty of problems during his managerial career but the events of the past few days must be right up there for Craig Hignett.

Wednesday, 25th September 2019, 1:00 pm
Updated Wednesday, 25th September 2019, 2:56 pm
Hartlepool United manager Craig Hignett during the Vanarama National League match between Hartlepool United and Chesterfield at Victoria Park, Hartlepool on Tuesday 24th September 2019. (Credit: Mark Fletcher | MI News)

The Pools boss was left ashamed by the events that took place during Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at home to Dover Athletic.

Hartlepool as a club and town have been thrust into the national spotlight due to the alleged racially charged attack on Whites’ striker Inih Effiong after opening the scoring from the penalty spot.

Hignett’s preparations for Tuesday night’s match against Chesterfield were almost secondary as he was forced to deal with the fallout from the weekend.

Following the 1-1 draw at against the Spireites at Victoria Park, he said: “The disappointment of it all has been the hardest part for me, seeing how it affected the players and people.

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“You shouldn’t got to a football game and come home with those feelings whether you’re a player or a fan.

“That was the disappointing thing for me and then you worry about how it affects people.

“I’ve got nothing but praise about the lads because they’ve got on with it. I’m not sure I could have done what they’ve done.

“You deal with a lot of stuff and a lot of it is behind the scenes with players and fall outs and what have you but this has been such a disappointing thing to deal with and you don’t expect to be talking about it in 2019.

“It does knock you for six, I felt ashamed to be honest and that’s wrong because it doesn’t reflect us as a club and what the fans are.

“The idiots who’ve caused this have brought shame to everyone else and we won’t stand for that, it’s something that I hate and I never want to see it again at this football club and if we can make steps to stop it happening again then good.

“But we can’t rest on our laurels and think everything is happy now, we need to stamp it out.

“By that it means if you hear one person say anything of a racist nature then they get ejected straight away.”