YOU know your football club is in trouble when the chief executive publicly criticises the players’ performance and says sorry to the fans.
That is exactly what Pools chief Russ Green has done in the wake of Saturday’s appalling display in the FA Cup.
Supporters had so far been patient but that has been wearing thin and the fans that travelled to Chesterfield rightfully vented their fury at the inept performance.
And who could blame them?
Early November and Pools are already out of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy, FA Cup and Capital One Cup and six points adrift at the foot of the table.
Rock bottom, devoid of any confidence and playing like a side already relegated, fans are praying the situation won’t get any worse.
The good news for fans?
Surely things can only get better.
The bad news?
Things show no signs of getting any better.
You only have to look at the player ratings in Monday’s paper, which saw a raft of 4s and even a 3, to get a flavour of how bad Saturday was.
It wouldn’t be a surprise if some of those originally touted for the manager’s job withdrew their applications following the 6-1 hammering to Chesterfield.
I hope that whoever does get the job likes a challenge because keeping Pools up this season would be a huge achievement.
Micky Barron’s chances look all but over after the weekend and Wednesday’s home game against Tranmere could well be his last in charge.
The club’s hierarchy need to make an appointment quickly and hopefully it will be an experienced manager, who is able to bring in his own coaching staff.
It is clear that Pools need a fresh approach.
But with finances tight and a reliance on the loan market, the chances of bringing in fresh blood on the playing front looks limited.
Therefore, it is up to the current crop of players to turn things around and fast.
Russ Green has called on the players to regroup, to be united, committed and passionate.
That is the least you expect from a professional footballer.
Let’s hope his words do not fall on deaf ears.
– RICHARD MENNEAR