Hartlepool United manager hunt latest as Craig Hignett talks about the club's next appointment and the reasons for Matthew Bates' sacking

Craig Hignett flanked by owner Raj Singh.
Craig Hignett flanked by owner Raj Singh.

Director of football Craig Hignett says Hartlepool United have been inundated with applications for their vacant managerial role.

Pools sacked manager Matthew Bates on Wednesday after a run of six National League defeats on the bounce.

Hignett has revealed the club have already received a host of CVs and declarations of interest, despite Bates having only been sacked 24 hours ago.

But the former boss, who has stepped in to take over as caretaker, says the club will take it's time to make a decision on who should succeed Bates.

“We get the right man, we don’t want it to drag on. Sooner rather than later," he said.

"We want to take our time and appoint because the board feel he is the right man for the job. We want to grow as a club together and take us up the leagues. If it’s not Matty then it’s got to be someone else. We want to be a club who gives a manager a chance.

"The response has been good so far, amazing. Countless CVs sent in. Myself and Mark (Maguire) have had a lot to sift through. We take our time and whittle it down to speak to the right people."

Hignett revealed it was owner Raj Singh who made the call to get rid of Bates at a pre-planned meeting between manager and chairman yesterday.

He said Bates' sacking has been a difficult one to take for everyone at the club.

“It was a massively difficult decision. I was desperate for him to be a success and am genuinely gutted it hasn’t worked out," said Hignett, who will take the team against Dagenham on Saturday at the Super 6 Stadium.

“I’m feeling the same he will be I’m sure – because I’ve been through it myself.

“We had a lot to deal with as a club, all them mismanagement which went on and he earned the chance for be a manager because of what he did last year – we should always be thankful for it.

“We have had some highs this season, recent results hadn’t helped but there more to it. He’s been here a few years, knows it well and I am gutted it’s not worked out.

“The chairman spoke to him and I’m sure he will be devastated. He took to the role and wanted to be a success.

“It was a decision out of the blue a bit. We didn’t envisage it happening.

“The crowd on Tuesday was not a factor. It was a concern, but not a factor. Liam Noble incident was the same, nothing to do with it. Purely a football decision."

As revealed by the Mail this morning, Hignett has ruled himself out of the running for the post.

"I don’t want it – it’s temporary believe me," he said.

"I was brought to the club to protect the club and the chairman’s interest. I can spend his money as manager.

“This gives us time to make the right choice as manager."