Trevor Carson hopes Craig Hignett will take the core of Hartlepool United’s squad into next season, writes Roy Kelly.
Pools ended the season – which finished yesterday – in the healthy position of 16th in League Two.
Hignett’s side turned the season around in spectacular fashion in the spring and Pools four-time player of the year can kick on again in August.
“We are close-knit so I do hope we stay together and we are not completely ripped apart, but that’s the manager’s decision,” said Carson.
“There is a good core of lads here, no big-time Charlies, no big egos.”
Thus far, there has been little movement on the squad front at Victoria Park.
Many of the side’s key players have extended their stays – Carson included.
Players such as fellow keeper Adam Bartlett, Carl Magnay, Jake Carroll, Matthew Bates, Nicky Featherstone and Billy Paynter are also staying, though midfielder Michael Woods or defender Michael Duckworth have yet to pen deals.
Hignett’s only fresh signings to date have been young prospects Ben Dudzinski, Ben Pollock and James Martin.
But Carson says there is anticipation in the Pools squad ahead of the return to work at the end of next month.
“We’re looking forward to pre-season already and not just because we’ve been told we might be going somewhere quite nice!” smiled the keeper.
“I think we’ll put together a good squad and have a right good go next season. The last few games of the season have been defeats, but we’ve shown up well before that.
“Everything is positive and everyone can’t wait.”