Boss: Pools fans will soon see an improvement under my guidance

WATCHING ANOTHER DEFEAT: John Hughes in the dugout during the game against Stevenage. Picture by FRANK REID
WATCHING ANOTHER DEFEAT: John Hughes in the dugout during the game against Stevenage. Picture by FRANK REID

JOHN Hughes has reaffirmed his belief that Hartlepool United supporters will soon see a definite improvement under his guidance.

Despite having slipped to three straight home defeats since his unveiling, performances have picked up slightly in recent matches.

Hughes insists his influence will be a gradual one, but he is determined to pay back the faith the club and its fans have already shown in him.

“My job is to lift this club,” he told SportMail today, with Pools bottom of League One and without a win in 20 matches.

“I have to make the players the best individually and collectively they can be.

“I need to give them a style of play that will make the people of Hartlepool want to come along, even in defeat.

“We will see it getting better and we’ll see that we’re all in it together.”

Hughes has already picked up on the passion of the region, as he went on: “This club gave me an opportunity here and I’m going to take it.

“The supporters are behind me and there’s a right good sense of warmth here in the North-East.

“Right from my first game, losing 5-0 to Coventry, I walked into training the next day and one of the staff there said ‘you’ve not improved it much then’ and it makes you feel homely.

“Even the guy who says that cares.

“It plays on the passion, spirit and pride that are needed to get out of this.”

Pools have spent the past few days working on the training pitches at Maiden Castle ahead of Saturday’s trip to promotion-chasing MK Dons.

Hughes’ methods remain the same and he refuses to work his players into the ground despite their woeful run of results.

And the Scot added: “I’m the manager and have to make sure I’m making the right decisions.

“You have to look at the situation in a calculated manner.

“It’s pointless hitting the players with a big stick, some will say this and that – I should be running them along the beach – but you have make sure you take a considered approach.

“It’s about getting a response with effort and commitment by being crafty and I think we’ve seen that in the past couple of matches.”