Any Hartlepool United win will do for Mick Wadsworth

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UGLY or beautiful, Mick Wadsworth admits it’s “win at any cost” time for Hartlepool United.

Six games without a win and sliding down the League One ladder, under-pressure Pools welcome to Colchester United to Victoria Park tomorrow afternoon.

The squad has been locked away in their Maiden Castle war room this week as players and staff have tried to devise a battle plan to get out of their month-long slump.

Pools boss Wadsworth made his team sit through a DVD replay of Tuesday’s 4-0 defeat, and said the response was positive.

“We just need a win right now and we’ll do anything to get that,” said the first-team coach.

“Whether it’s beautiful or ugly, getting those three points is the most important thing.

“The response this week has been very positive and there was a lot of honesty shown. We watched the DVD and had a chat. We’ve done some work on things and I’m pleased with their reaction, but I expected no less because their an honest bunch of lads.

“Over the season they’ve responded from disappointment very well and that’s what we’re looking for again, because once we do get that win I think we’ll be back on track.”

He added: “This run is weighing on our mind a little, but it’s about dealing with it. We need to get back to those basics which we were doing so well until recently.”

Pools have scored just once in nearly nine and a half hours of league football, although their visitors, too, are far from prolific away from home and haven’t notched in four outings.

Pools will be without vice-captain Neil Austin because of a calf strain.

Wadsworth explained: “We’ll be without Neil for a couple of weeks, which is a blow because he’s one of our blue-chip brigade.

“Neil’s a big player for us, he’ll admit himself he hasn’t played as well recently, but it’s very disappointing to lose him. But Steve Haslam will come in and that’s a natural replacement.”