Hartlepool United interim boss Matthew Bates looks for 'reaction'

Matthew Bates addresses the media at the Northern Gas & Power Stadium.
Matthew Bates addresses the media at the Northern Gas & Power Stadium.

Matthew Bates said he and Hartlepool United's interim management have been tasked with getting a reaction from the Pools squad.

And that is what they are aiming to do to keep the club in the Football League.

Pools chairman, Gary Coxall, took the decision on Sunday to end the the three-month tenure of Dave Jones in the aftermath of the terrible performance against Barnet on Saturday.

That 2-0 defeat dropped the side into the bottom two and yesterday it was announced that Bates, club captain Billy Paynter, conditioning coach Stuart Parnaby and physio Ian Gallagher were being placed in charge of team affairs.

Bates will "front" the gang of four for the last two games of the season, at Cheltenham on Saturday and against Doncaster seven days later, but says it's a team effort.

"It's been a whirlwind really, I've had no sleep," smiled Bates when he addresse the media this afternoon at the Northern Gas & Power Stadium.

"I got a call yesterday morning from the chairman who asked me to take over with Billy, Stuart and Buster.

"He's asked me to front it, but it's a team thing, a collective, the four of us and the players too.

"The message we are giving to the squad.

"We are a tight group, regardless of what people think, we are going to work together to get out of the situation we are in.

"We just did a cool down yesterday, but we've had a proper session today and the attitude has been excellent.

"The chairman has made the change in the hope of a reaction, I've certainly seen a reaction in the last two days.

"Only time will tell on Saturday, that will be the test."

Bates said he was not prepared to make any comments about the outgoing boss, explaining that he is only concentrating on the future.

"I don't want to get into old regimes, that's not what I'm about," said the 30-year-old former Middlesbrough star.

"I don't have Twitter but I've heard all the things that are going around and I don't agree with that.

"What's gone is gone, we have to look forward to the next two games."