Matthew Bates highlights ONE key difference between his TWO spells as Hartlepool United caretaker

Hartlepool caretaker manager Matthew Bates gives instructions to Michael Woods.
Hartlepool caretaker manager Matthew Bates gives instructions to Michael Woods.

Matthew Bates admits applying an alternate mindset has been the key difference between his two spells in caretaker charge of Hartlepool United.

The former defender’s side take on AFC Fylde, managed by former Tranmere man Dave Challinor, of long throw fame, this weekend looking to record only their second win since November in the National League.

And Bates says that he has had to approach this spell in the hotseat very differently to the last two games of Pools’ doomed Football League survival attempt.

“Last time I was in charge I had two games until the end of the season, this time is different because we don’t know how long,” he said.

“It’s a very different mindset, this is week by week, day by day. I don’t know what will happen next week or in two weeks, it’s something I can’t think about right now.

“There’s so much up in the air at the moment with the club, is there a takeover next week? In two weeks? Will we win Saturday? Will we not?

“We carry on week by week and I will do my best as long as I’m asked to do the job. Nothing has changed with my position from last week, the message from Pam [Duxbury] is the same.”

Meanwhile, a more immediate concern for many of the players is whether they will be getting paid next week.

Northern Irishman Liam Donnelly says, for him at least, it’s not been too hard to stay focused in this time of uncertainty at Victoria Park.

“Once you get into training you concentrate on what you need to do,” he said.

“We’ve been paid so far and hopefully that continues. Until we don’t get paid we can’t really complain about it too much.”