Promotion ‘would mean everything’ to Dave Challinor and Hartlepool United as National League play-off final against Torquay United approaches

Dave Challinor and Hartlepool United could be just 90-minutes away from the Football League.

Friday, 18th June 2021, 4:45 pm

It’s been a long and turbulent road for the club over the past few years but Challinor has helped steady the ship and guide the side to the National League promotion final against Torquay United this Sunday (2pm kick-off).

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It’s Challinor’s 10th play-off campaign of his career and one he’s desperate to have end with his first ever promotion to the Football League

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Hartlepool manager, Dave Challinor celebrates after the final whistle during the Vanarama National League match between Stockport County and Hartlepool United at the Edgeley Park Stadium, Stockport on Sunday 13th June 2021. (Credit: Mark Fletcher | MI News)

“It would mean everything,” said the Pools boss.

“We all want to do it for the fans and the clubs but personally you want as many promotions as you can on your CV.

“My aim since I started managing as player/manager in 2011 at Colwyn Bay was be a Football League manager.

"I’ve not had the honour to be able to do that I want to make sure that I can class myself as that by winning on Sunday, as do all the players.

"We speak about being here and the pinnacle and aspiring to be better and aspiring for this group to be a successful one and by five o’clock, whenever it might be, on Sunday, we’ll be able to potentially say that they are Football League players which is something that is huge for them personally and huge for us as a group but most importantly, massive for the football club to get back to where it should be.”

"It’s no real surprise if I’m honest,” Challinor added. “These fans go above and beyond to make sure that's the case and especially in difficult times.

"You know when it's the biggest game for a long time and you know if there's 3,000 tickets and 20,000 people want those tickets it's going to become a bit of a scramble and a ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ situation.

"We've got to appreciate those fans and those watching back home and do them justice.

“We’ve built a philosophy in the changing room which reflects the supporters and those videos you see help that but we don't need any more motivation other than getting this club back to the Football League.”

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