Hartlepool United manager Dave Challinor admits to 'fractious' team selections ahead of Morpeth Town and Blyth Spartans friendlies
After playing Morpeth Town on Friday evening (7pm kick-off), Pools will make another short journey to Croft Park to face National League North side Blyth Spartans on Saturday afternoon (3pm kick-off).
And having gone almost a fortnight since their opening pre-season friendly match against Newcastle United under-23s, Hartlepool will be keen to turn up the intensity ahead of the National League start on October 3.
Manager Dave Challinor has made 10 signings for Hartlepool during the off season with 20-year-old striker David Parkhouse arriving on loan from Sheffield United this week.
"I’d have loved to be in a position where we had a full squad ready for our opening friendly matches so we could play two completely different 11s each half but that was never going to be the case,” Challinor told The Mail regarding his team selection plans.
"It’s going to be a little bit fractious in terms of the players you might see playing over the next couple of games.
“But in the main it’s going to be important to get minutes in their legs.
"I’m an advocate of getting that winning mentality about us in pre-season even though results aren’t really significant in the grand scheme of things.
"We want to embed our principles of how we want to play. We did an 11 v 11 in training and built some minutes up and had the game against Newcastle 23s.
"The process has already began to make sure every day that the players give us as a management team a really tough job to pick a starting 11 for the first day [against Aldershot] on October 3.
"Whether it’s in passing drills or possession games, you’ve got to make sure you’re right in our thoughts.
"At this stage it’s a blank canvas in terms of where we’re at and we’ll have people who pick the team for us with their performances and standards in training.”