ANDY Monkhouse wasn’t best pleased when Hartlepool boss Mick Wadsworth pulled him into his office to tell him he was dropped.
That was three weeks ago following a dip in form which the player himself now admits was probably deserving of a demotion to the bench.
Monkhouse (right), though, gave his manager the response he was looking for, the wideman providing the assist for Antony Sweeney during the late 1-0 win over Colchester United having entered the fray during the second half with a point to prove.
The midfielder has been restored to the side since that game-turning cameo and netted his first goal since September during last week’s 2-1 win over Charlton.
And Monkhouse admits being left out against The Us was the wake-up call he needed.
“I’d be the first to admit my form maybe wasn’t what it should be after New Year,” said the 30-year-old ahead of tomorrow’s trip to Exeter City.
“I don’t need someone to tell me whether I’ve played well or not. I’ve been in the game long enough to know if I’ve done my job or I haven’t.
“I’d spoken with Mick on numerous occasions and to be fair he was right, maybe I did deserve to be left out. That’s not to say I was happy about it. But you’ve got to take it on the chin and hopefully the last couple of games I’ve been coming back into good form.
“Now I’m back in, though, I’ll be staying in the team until the end of the season.”
Wadsworth, meanwhile, believes his side is now only three wins away from safety. Pools are 11 points clear of the League One trapdoor.
That follows Plymouth Argyle’s 10-point deduction, a result of entering administration this week, which has changed the complexion of the lower half of the table.
“We’ve always said if we get past 50 that would be just enough,” said Wadsworth.
“But until we get those three wins we can’t relax and we don’t want to relax. We’ve got a fantastic opportunity, though, over the next 15 games to get a lot more points than just nine.”