Hartlepool United boss only interested in hungry and ambitious players

Craig Hignett.
Craig Hignett.

Craig Hignett says he is only interested in “hungry and ambitious” footballers for Hartlepool United.

The former Middlesbrough favourite has made a stunning start as Pools boss, lifting the strugglers from 22nd and on the edge of oblivion to 16th in League Two.

Hignett is looking to push on at Victoria Park next season.

He has already got a number of the squad to sign new contracts, including Trevor Carson and Lewis Hawkins, with more of the current side expected to put pen to paper in the coming days.

It is a sign of intent by the 46-year-old who will be looking for new talent and he warns that only those meeting his criteria should apply!

“We want players who want to come and push on and develop,” he said.

“Everyone has to have a desire to improve and be wanted as footballers.

“I don’t want players happy to be here at Hartlepool for five or six years.

“I want players who want to make the Championship or Premier League, that’s the type of players I will be looking for, those who are hungry and ambitious.”

While he has one eye on next season, Hignett has two matches left in this programme, both against sides chasing a place in League One.

Portsmouth come to the Vic on Saturday still with a chance of automatic promotion but looking more likely to have a place in the play-offs.

Pools will the end the campaign at Plymouth on May 7.

“We have two more games to come, both against promotion contenders, and we take them on looking to do well,” said Hignett.

The manager will be desperate to avoid a third straight defeat for the first time since coming to the club.

Hignett was not upset at some of the football played in Saturday’s defeat at Oxford.

But he was less than pleased at some of the decision-making which he felt hindered their chances of getting a result at the third-placed club.

“Overall, I was both pleased and disappointed,” he said.

“I was pleased how we dictated the game, first-half especially, but disappointed we didn’t create anything.

“Decision-making second half was really poor, that was all over the pitch, not just the final third.

“The lads know that, they were trying to force it, things go wrong when you try to force it.”