HARTLEPOOL United’s players must start believing in themselves if Pools are to dig themselves out of trouble.
That was the message today from new boss Paul Murray in the aftermath of watching Pools hit rock bottom of the Sky Bet Football League.
Murray explained that he plans to strengthen the squad this week, while working with the players on the training ground at Maiden Castle.
Much of that time will be spent getting across the Murray ethos but in particular emphasising the need for “belief” and “confidence”.
Pools came within a few minutes of taking a point in the former midfielder’s first game at the helm only for an 88th-minute Harrison Dunk header to give Cambridge United a 2-1 victory.
“It’s about belief,” said Murray. “You have to believe.
“In the second half I could see we have talent on the pitch – we got one goal and we could have scored again.
“We believe in them and we want them to believe themselves too.
“The only way to get confidence is to work your socks off, that will get you back in that confidence mode and that’s what we are aiming for and we will work at it in training.
“But it’s about believing.
“When you are down the bottom you don’t expect to come to places like Cambridge and get three points.
“But we have try to install that outlook in their minds.”
The 38-year-old will also be working through a list of targets while also taking in games almost every day this week to see if he can unearth any gems.
“I’m really looking forward to training and starting to get my ideas over to the lads,” he said.
“We will improve things and get people in to help.
“There are people in the pipeline,
“We have an area in the squad we need to look at – we have a lot of young players and a lot of older players, but not in the middle range of 23, 24, 25.
“And we are looking at that bracket with a few additions,#
“I will do what I feel is right for the club and if I get these players in then they will benefit the team and the lads.”
While admitting the first half “wasn’t good enough” he was encouraged by the side’s play in the second 45 minutes at the Abbey Stadium.
“This is an important week,” he said. “It is a full week to get my ideas across.
“There are games to watch on Monday and Tuesday and homework to do on everyone as well about Saturday’s game.
“I’m just pleased we have a full week on the training ground.
“I’ve only had a couple of days and I’ve changed a few things already, but it’s about baby steps rather than trying to do everything at once.
“But I’m looking forward to it.
“The second-half was encouraging, there was good spirit.
“The first half was tough.
“We had a good chat at half-time, we had to rally the troops a bit and make changes.
“I’m so pleased they came out and showed that belief we had in them which is so positive for the future.”