Football - Hughes still adjusting at Pools

Hartlepool boss John Hughes has admitted it has not been an easy transition after swapping life in the Scottish First Division with Livingston for his first manager's job in England.

PA Sport

Hughes arrived at Victoria Park with the club rock-bottom of npower League One and without a win in their previous 16 matches. His first game in charge ended in a 5-0 home defeat to Coventry.

Pools remain bottom after his first 11 games in charge, but Hughes will not give up on his side's survival chances, which have been given a boost with a recent win at Sheffield United and Saturday's 3-1 success at Portsmouth.

"I've had to change my style and approach," Hughes told Press Association Sport. "I've come into a team that was suffering from a lack of confidence. There was trepidation in their play, so there was no point coming in with a big stick.

"I've had to let them understand that I've been there as a player and as manager now the only way out is to work very hard and the players have certainly done that.

"I've found it very difficult to put my stamp on the team due to outside factors. If it's not been heavy rain and floods it's been snow and this has affected our preparation, making it hard to get a period of continuity and consistency.

"But there are signs we're getting there. If we can keep a settled side and get a bit of luck to turn draws into wins, confidence will return and we can try and get some momentum going."

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