‘We need to be a lot more resilient’ – Antony Sweeney’s message to Hartlepool United players ahead of Swindon Town trip
It’s another quick turnaround and long journey for Hartlepool United as they look to bounce back at Swindon Town on Tuesday night (7:45pm kick-off).
Saturday’s 3-1 defeat at home to Forest Green Rovers condemned Pools to their third consecutive League Two defeat.
Despite the dip in form, they still remain in the top half of the League Two table with 23 points from their opening 17 games leaving them 12th.
They face a Swindon side relegated from League One last season and hoping to make a swift return. The Robins currently sit fourth in the table on 29 points and will move into the automatic promotion places should they better Port Vale’s result against Walsall.
Pools are still searching for a new permanent manager with interim boss Antony Sweeney set to take charge of his sixth match in his second spell as caretaker.
It has been three weeks since Dave Challinor departed Hartlepool and there has been plenty of interest in the role but the club are yet to make a decision.
Ahead of Tuesday night’s game, Sweeney said: "We're going to see where we at physically.
"We had some minor issues from the [Wycombe Wanderers] game that we patched up a little bit and whether they'll be okay for [Swindon], I'm not sure right now but this is why we have a squad of players and not just the 11.
"We're going to have to rely on them at some point and they are going to have to provide some service to the team and hopefully earn themselves a place as a regular starter.
"No one likes to be on the bench or in the stands but opportunities come when you least expect them and Tuesday will be an opportunity for some.
"The players who started on Saturday also have an opportunity to prove that their performance then was not their usual standard.
"We need to look at ourselves long and hard because twice in the space of a month, Leyton Orient 5-0 and this game, where we've been soundly beaten and that can't happen too often.
"We need to be a lot more resilient and everything we were at Wycombe on a consistent basis in order to get to where we want to be this season.”