Hartlepool United manager Dave Challinor discusses the 'subtle improvements' needed after unbeaten start continued in the FA Cup at Yeovil Town

Dave Challinor’s first five games in charge at Hartlepool United have not been short on entertainment value with 23 goals in total.

Monday, 2nd December 2019, 5:00 pm
Dave Challinor appeals to the referee before Luke Wilkinson is sent off during the FA Cup match between Yeovil Town and Hartlepool United at Huish Park, Yeovil on Tuesday 12th November 2019. (Credit: Gareth Williams)

Two late strikes at Exeter City to snatch a 2-2 draw saw Pools take their goal tally to 15 since Challinor took charge of the side.

The open and forward thinking ethos of the side has proven effective in recent weeks as United remain unbeaten under their new manager.

Despite losing just one of their last 10 matches, Hartlepool have failed to keep a clean sheet in each of their last seven games with Challinor keen to tighten things up at the back.

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“Football is about scoring goals – ideally we’d be scoring and not conceding at the other end,” he said.

“That would be the ideal situation but I suppose little improvements are needed.

“The players have been unbelievably good in terms of creating chances through endeavour and good play more often than not.

“We’ve managed to stick a lot of them away, we want to score goals and be open but we know the recipe for successful teams isn’t just scoring a lot, it’s keeping them out at the other end.

“We need to work on that bit of it but I can’t honestly say we’re defending badly, we’re just making individual mistakes and we need to cut them out so we don’t have a mountain to climb every game.”

Hartlepool have came from two goals down to draw two Saturday’s running as the side look to epitomise the ‘never say die’ mantra.

While Challinor would rather have more matches like Tuesday night’s 5-1 win at Chesterfield, he’s been impressed by the character shown by his players.

“That’s all I ask for, we’ll try and improve and get better but the bare minimum is to keep going and the club spirit and ethos is based around that,” added the United boss.

“It’s something I demand from my players as would any manager but they know as well as anyone that it’s the bare minimum the supporters expect and I’m delighted that in the short time I’ve been here that they’ve delivered the ‘never say die’ attitude in spades.”