HARTLEPOOL United’s players are benefiting after the “fear factor” was banished from the club, says manager Ronnie Moore.
Moore admits he had second thoughts before taking charge at Victoria Park four months ago, with the club rooted to the foot of Sky Bet League Two and staring relegation in the face.
I tried to brighten things up because I had to try to get the best out of them – a lot of the players have not had an arm around themRonnie Moore
But a recent run of good form – including eight wins since January – has seen Pools climb to third bottom and are now a point above the drop zone with five games to go.
Moore says the shackles have been released from his players and they are now playing with a new-found freedom, something he wants to continue for the rest of the season.
“The whole place was flat when I first came in and I was shocked, to be honest,” Moore said.
“There was a fear factor surrounding the place, it was all doom and gloom but I was not having it.
“I tried to brighten things up because I had to try to get the best out of them – a lot of the players have not had an arm around them.
“I did have second thoughts (about taking the job), but it was work.
“It is a job and no matter where they are in the league you think that it can only get better.
“And it has got to a stage where what seemed impossible is now possible,” added Moore ahead of today’s match away at York City where Pools will be backed by 2,000 travelling supporters.
Pools are back on home soil on Tuesday when they host Accrington Stanley in Sky Bet League Two.
And Moore says the supporters have a major role to play with another bumper crowd expected after the club again slashed ticket prices.
“Hartlepool was never a place you would go to as a manager and be frightened because the crowd were brilliant,” added Moore.
“It was the freezing cold night on a Tuesday that really got me, that I was scared of!
“But the will to get out of the mess we are in has been unbelievable.
“I had no idea the passion the crowd has here was there because I was here once a season so you don’t get it.
“But when you are here every other week, then you get to know the crowd and that desire, drive and belief has come through to the side.
“The will to stay in the Football League you feel from the supporters but I wasn’t sure that we were getting it from the players.
“I said a couple of weeks ago I thought about bringing a couple of fans in to speak to the players but the penny has dropped now and they are working so hard.
“The only thing I ask is that they work as hard as they can and that they are not cheating anyone – you win more games at this level if you do.”