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Hughes takes his chance to change
JOHN Hughes is out to make the two-week hiatus without a game as the chance to implement his ideas and principles on the Hartlepool United side.
The manager took over two weeks ago and had three games in his first ten days in charge.
And, while he has picked up just a point from those games, he has had an instant tactical influence on the team who remain ten points adrift at the foot of League One.
Pools are next in action against Stevenage a week on Saturday.
"There's a break, two weeks without a game,'' said Hughes, enjoying his first managerial role in English football after spending nine years in charge in SPL.
"I spoke to my mate who was working at Watford for a while and he told me there's not much time to work with them on the coaching pitch.
"You play Saturday-Tuesday and midweek is about recovery. We've a lot of elder statesmen in the team and they need time to recover. So this two weeks will be good to get out there without the pressure of a game.''
Pools have continued to train at the club's Durham training ground in the last couple of days and Hughes admitted: "You can train and get a sweat on and they all want to feel some sense of achievement.
"As a coach you put things in place and try it out and it depends on the weather. It's about working the summer to lay the foundations and give them a template.
"But if it's about working hard in the bad weather to make them a better team and work hard it will be done.''
And Hughes, who should have Luke James back in training tomorrow after the teenager had a hernia operation, added: "I'm not trying to appease the supporters here, but I've got to give them a special mention.
"I've come down from Scotland and the people in Hartlepool have been so friendly and welcoming - it might change if results don't go our way!
"It gives you a platform to bring success to the club and this place is crying out for success. It inspires you to get out of bed to want it on a morning.
"I'm trying to get that message across on the training pitch. Who is going to pass it, who is going to be the leader, the coach, the voice, who will demand to set that culture to pass the ball properly.
"I see changes taking place and bits and pieces happening. It's energy sapping at times.''
Pools' reserve game with Rotherham this afternoon has been postponed with the Billingham Town pitch waterlogged.