MATTHEW BATES wants his Hartlepool United players to tear up the script tonight – by seeing off documentary stars Salford City to maintain their surge up the National League table.

Salford are the darlings of the non-league scene, with the BBC’s ‘Class of 92: Out Of Their League’ programme having showcased the club’s rise to the Conference.

The ‘rags to riches’ story is somewhat misleading though, with investment from the Neville brothers, Nicky Butt, Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs having enabled Salford to spend the kind of money that most non-league clubs can only dream of.

Last weekend’s win over Boreham Wood took Salford up to fourth position in the National League, but Pools are only a place behind them after Saturday’s success at Halifax Town extended their unbeaten run to nine games.

“I’ve seen bits of the documentaries, and it is what it is,” said Bates. “It is Salford. They are making a right go of it, they are putting a lot of money into it.

“It will be tough, but it’s just another game of football for me. The lads won’t take any notice of the documentaries or whatever, it’s football. If anything, that sort of thing should give us extra vigour to go and win a game.”

Pools have nothing to fear ahead of their trip to Moor Lane, with Saturday’s victory meaning they are still to suffer an away defeat this term.

Their last reverse on their travels came when they lost at Aldershot at the start of March, a record that underlines just how much progress has been made on Bates’ watch.

Hartlepool might have taken four games to get going this season, but from that point onwards, their results make them one of the most in-form teams in the country.

“Salford will be difficult, we know that, like any away game,” said the Pools boss. “But if you look back, it is March since we were last beaten away from home so we can go wherever confident.

“The lads should be full of confidence, I will be full of confidence, no matter who plays we know we can go out and get a result. That has to be the mentality. Home or away, we want to win the games.”