Date: 28th August 2014 at 9:03pm
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Manager Mark Yates has said the players are confident going into the game against Hartlepool United this weekend, but he knows we can’t treat them lightly.

Speaking to the Official Site ahead of the game on Saturday the gaffer explained that after five games so far this campaign, he gave the players Monday off to recharge and clear their heads and then on Tuesday we hit the University for some testing and he was pleased with the results that we got back when it came to players fitness levels and fatigue etc.

‘They had a training session that afternoon before having a day off yesterday and they’ll be in bright this morning. We’ll have a good day today, a lighter day tomorrow and we’ll be ready for what will be a tough examination against a Hartlepool side that got a really good win on Saturday.’

The gaffer goes on to say he was always going to give them the Bank Holiday off to spend with their families, and that wouldn’t have changed had we lost last weekend because he knows they have really been working hard so far this campaign, and there hasn’t been much time for rest, and it’s important players get that to recover properly both in physical terms but also in mental terms because it is a long old season.

‘There is a really good spirit in the camp at the moment and it’s a good place to come and work anyway but especially so after the win at Tranmere.’

For Hartlepool, the gaffer goes on to say that Koby Arthur is very close to a start now, and having spoken to Birmingham manager Lee Clark at a recent game they both took in, Clark is as delighted as Yates is with the impact that he’s had for us so far since joining us on loan.

The gaffer also said that he feels we are very close to signing a striker on loan and he was hoping that we could announce that within 48 hours when he spoke today – we then later had the announcement of the loan signing of Millwall’s John Marquis.

The gaffer also admitted that we have Bobby Gould’s grandson and goalkeeper Matthew training with us at the moment with a view to maybe doing a deal very shortly as well, and he comes to us having played previously in Australia and New Zealand but he’s been pretty impressive and Yates believes he’s got good ability to move forward in the English game now with his background.

As for injury news, Asa Hall is out with injury, and we do have a few ‘bumps’ but nothing that should keep anybody out really.

‘I’ve just been in to question a few whether they will be okay for the weekend and they just laughed at me. They like to be mollycoddled every now and then like we all do!’

He also confirmed that there is a bit of an illness doing the rounds at the moment but hopefully it won’t affect his choices this weekend, joking that he himself has a sore throat ‘for anyone that might be in the slightest bit interested!’