"No excuses" - Hartlepool United boss Craig Harrison assesses his side's latest National League defeat

Craig Harrison
Craig Harrison

"No excuses."

That was the message from Hartlepool United boss Craig Harrison after his side were again dished out a National League humbling by minnows AFC Fylde.

Strikes from Henry Jones and Danny Rowe ensured Pools were beaten on home turf for the second time this season, their fourth loss in six fifth tier games this campaign to date.

"I am bitterly, bitterly, disappointed with everything from everybody," he said of his players performance at the weekend.

"What we say in the dressing room stays in there, but I won’t hesitate to say everyone – me, the staff, the players – we all have to be better.

"There are absolutely no excuses. There can be no hiding from this. We all have to be better."

Pools have picked up just two points from their first six, a long way from the promotion pacesetters at the top of the table.

"There’s disappointment, real disappointment," Harrison said.

"Again we conceded a goal in the first-half when there’s nothing in the game, we weren’t great I admit. We should dig in, stuck at it and we get one later on.

"Instead, we conceded again, it’s deja-vu. It’s bitterly disappointing for the player, they are gutted.

"They strive to do better, had a good week in training and then in no way, shape or form played today."

AFC Fylde boss Dave Challinor believes the pressure is building on Pools after a six game winless start to the campaign.

He said: "I think this was a different one as the atmosphere probably favoured us in the fact that there was more pressure on Hartlepool because of their situation in that there’s still a bit of a hangover from their relegation last season.

"I suppose people from outside thought that they would be one of the front-runners in this division, but it’s not always like that.

"Playing here, I suppose from a manager looking at it from the outside, I wouldn’t want that burden on my team. Sometimes players can hide a little bit, don’t get me wrong I think they will be alright but there will be a little bit of turmoil and hard work to come first before they turn things around.

"But from my perspective I knew if we could start well then it could have an effect and certainly help us through the game. To get the goal made it more comfortable for us and we fully deserved to win.’"