Hartlepool boss says players must ignore Leyton Orient’s troubles

Dave Jones
Dave Jones

Dave Jones today re-iterated his belief that Hartlepool United must concentrate on the task ahead of them and nothing else.

Jones takes Pools to Leyton Orient this afternoon with the side in terrible trouble.

Pools are just one point above the relegation zone after a run of five matches without a win, allied with the resurgence of Newport County under caretaker Mike Flynn.

Today, Pools face crisis club Orient, who are in even worse touch and are heading for the National League, just three years after losing a penalty shoot-out at Wembley for a place in the Championship.

Defeat at Brisbane Road would be unthinkable against a team who have taken only four points from the last 30.

Much has been said and written about the Eastenders but Jones says Pools must not be distracted and must play their own game and if Orient are relegate in the process then so be it.

“We must put aside all else which is going on,” said the manager.

“We have to think about ourselves and not worry about other things.

“That’s what we will be telling them.

“Yes, it’s quite sad really, Leyton Orient are a good club.

“They are steeped in history and no-one wants to see this sort of thing happen.

“But that’s as far as your thoughts can go, because you have your own club to look after.

“I’ve gone back to clubs I’ve been at or associated with who are having a bad time, but you have to go and get the points.

“You can’t think of anything else, you have to make sure you are right and you can’t worry about them.”

Jones, whose team are within touching distance of Cheltenham above them, says his players are doing everything in their power to keep Pools in the Football League.

“You saw against Carlisle [on Friday] we are throwing bodies on the line and it shows we care,” he said.

“Some people might think the players don’t care, they do, we all do.”

And Jones hopes the players who have ‘lived through’ the Great Escape and other relegation fights can help the club out of their current mess.

Scott Harrison, Brad Walker, Nicky Featherstone and Michael Woods are just four of the players to survive more than one scrap for safety.

“It’s nothing new, it’s a situation this club has been in before,” added Jones.

“We hope the players who have come through it before can help those who haven’t.”