Pools boss Craig Hignett has put together some answers to the questions sent in to the Club and asked via Twitter over the past week.
Thanks to everyone who got in touch with the Club on social media or over email. I’m glad you’re enjoying my Blog and I have tried to answer as many of your questions as possible below.
Will you be operating with a small budget?
Well, I know what the budget is and I am fine with that. I know that I can make it work. All that you ask as a Manager is that you know what you’ve got because if it’s left open and you don’t have a figure then you can’t plan properly. Our budget will be no different from a lot of clubs in the league.
Will Higgy be looking to utilise the loan market with North East clubs?
I think it’s something we’ve tried to do over the years, with varying degrees of success. I think it’s something everyone says they will try to do when they arrive here but it can be easier said than done to get the right players, even with the connections Ged and I have. I will use it, definitely, but I will have to be clever in how we use the loan market and if we can do that then it might free up some money in other areas. Ideally, I want people who have played men’s football already.
Any update on the Luca Murphy saga and how will fringe players be kept match ready?
We can’t really say too much about the Luca Murphy situation at the moment because it’s ongoing. In terms of the fringe players, we’ll be organising our own bounce or friendly games to try and give those lads some football and keep them fit.
How many players would Higs bring in, in an ideal world?
Well, in an ideal world I would probably try and bring in another six! I am not sure I have the budget for that, though! We will stretch what we have as far as it will go and try to be clever with it and then throw in to the mix the chance to use the loan market as we go along too.
What does it mean to you to manage Pools?
This is a Club that I have a lot of feeling for. I have been here as a player, an Assistant Manager and now Manager twice so I love the place and the people involved, from the office staff all the way through. It’s a Club I feel deserves better because it’s been a long road and the fans have suffered quite a lot over the last few years. I understand what fans want and I understand this place so I am going to do everything I can to provide a good and exciting season. I want to give people something to look forward to on a Saturday again. Obviously, getting back to the EFL is the main goal and if that can happen this season then brilliant but, if not, then we’ll keep on improving year on year to achieve our ambitions.
Any interest in bringing Amos back?
No, Danny has a contract with Doncaster and that is where is future is now. He was good for us last season, he’s a cracking lad with plenty of quality but we’ll be looking elsewhere this year.
What is your ambition this season and will finishing outside the top 7 be classed as failure?
I guess it will be, in my eyes and by my own standards. The ambition has to be to get promoted. That is what I want, it’s what everyone at the Club wants and it’s what I want the players to be thinking about from the moment we get back in to training. We’ll be doing everything we can to achieve but this league is quite even across the board, while there are some teams with a lot of money so it can be very difficult. If you have a few bits of quality and a certain way of doing things then you can get out of the division without massive money - sometimes the teams with more cash don’t spend it wisely. If everyone stays fit in the squad that we will have then I would be disappointed if we aren’t in and around it this season.
I understand you’re a big fan of Pep Guardiola, is there anything you can take from his methods and use as your own?
Haha, well I am more of a Klopp fan, if I’m being honest! Pep is outstanding but so is Klopp. I know I’ve seen more of Liverpool this season but at times they have been absolutely scintillating, while City have kept up the standards to ridiculously high levels again. The 4-3-3 that Liverpool play isn’t a million miles from how we want to do it but you have to make subtle changes because obviously you’re talking about world class players. They’re really clever and all in tune with it because it only takes a couple to be out of tune, not pressing when they should be or something, and it looks completely different and it’s all over the place.
Thanks again for sending your questions through, I enjoyed answering those.
I will be back with another update for you on Friday.
All the best,