Hartlepool United manager Dave Challinor reflects on first full week training and focuses ahead of Boreham Wood match

Hartlepool United manager Dave Challinor has finally got his players onto the training pitch for an uninterrupted week building up to tomorrow’s National League match against Boreham Wood at Victoria Park (3pm kick-off).

Friday, 22nd November 2019, 7:53 am
Luke James of Hartlepool United being treated after head clash.

Challinor was appointed as Pools boss last Monday but hasn’t been able to have consecutive sessions on the training pitch until this week due to a hectic travel and fixture schedule that saw the side clock up over 1,800 miles in the space of seven days.

“With the week we had last week, it’s important we got the players back physically and mentally because we all spent a lot of time away from home and on the bus,” said the United manager.

“The stuff we’ve done so far this week has been good and we’ve got to find our feet a little bit in terms of how much we demand from them and how much we want them to train.

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“One thing we will demand is that the training is at a higher intensity than what it has been and that’s something that I’ve done throughout my career.

“I want my teams to play with a high intensity and in order to do that on a Saturday, you’ve got to work on that through the week.

“So it has been good in training and the players have been positive and responded well to it.

“Hopefully we can keep performing as we have done in the last two games on the pitch and pick up a positive result.”

Recent results in the league have been frustrating for Pools as their points return has not reflected their performances in Challinor’s opinion.

“We have to use it as a learning tool,” he continued.

“When you’re in the heat of battle, you need strong characters and if a goal does go in you need to move on and react to get back on the front foot.

“It’s a tough one because I know we deserved to get three points but we haven’t.

“We can’t afford many more of them because points are so important and the league is really tight so points matter.”

*Atletico Madrid striker Diego Costa is expected to be sidelined until 2020 after undergoing surgery on a herniated disc.

Although the LaLiga outfit have not put a timescale on his recovery, he will be out for at least two months.

A statement on the club's website read: "Diego Costa underwent surgery on his cervical disc herniation in Madrid on Thursday. According to the information provided by the club's medical services, the operation has gone as planned."

The former Chelsea forward has scored two goals in 15 appearances this season and last featured as a late substitute in a 3-1 win against Espanyol on November 10.

The injury update comes a day after centre-back Stefan Savic suffered a relapse of the thigh injury he picked up with Montenegro in October.