Nicky Featherstone today apologised to Hartlepool United fans for Saturday’s 4-0 drubbing at Mansfield – and he says that the players are desperate to make amends.
The midfielder admitted that the team’s away form is “not good enough” following their eighth defeat on the road.
Pools slipped to 19th in League Two, just five points above the drop zone.
No team in the division have conceded more away from home than Pools and with a trip to another promotion contender to follow tomorrow night at Luton Town, things are looking bleak.
“We want to apologise to the fans,” Featherstone said. “They travel a long way and spent a lot of money to support us.
“At the minute, away from home, it’s not good enough. We’d like to put things right for them.”
On the Luton trip, Featherstone added: “It’s a chance to put things right.
“We’re working hard on the training ground and preparing well for each game but, for whatever reason, we’re not delivering away from home at the minute.
“It’s very disappointing and it’s hard to put our finger on why.”
A sizeable number of the Pools travelling support of 331 left their seats at Field Mill on Saturday after sub Alex MacDonald made it 3-0 from outside the box.
And the total dwindled still further when Ben Whiteman made it 4-0 in the 76th minute with his second goal.
Whiteman had put Pools ahead in the 19th minute in front of the away fans who then had to witness a calamitous second, scored by Danny Rose.
Ironically, Pools could have taken the lead from a home mistake but Padraig Amond’s attempted lob drifted wide at 0-0.
“Goals change games,” said Featherstone. “Podge had a chance and it doesn’t go in and then, at the other end, we don’t defend well enough in our box.”
Mansfield: Kean, White, Pearce, Bennett, Benning, Whiteman, Collins, Byrom, Potter (MacDonald 65), Rose (Green 69), Coulthirst (Arquin 78). Subs not used: Shearer, Baxendale, Hamilton, McGuire. Booked: Rose. Goals: Whiteman 19 & 76, Rose 26, MacDonald 71
Hartlepool Utd: Bartlett, Donnelly (Richardson 46), Harrison, Bates, Kavanagh, Walker, Featherstone, Nelson, Amond (Alessandra 58), Thomas (Oates 75), Rooney. Subs not used: Woods, Hawkins, Smith, Fryer.