Tis: “Every week is an opportunity”

City boss hoping for another three points from Pools

Grecians manager Paul Tisdale is looking ahead to this weekend’s fixture against Hartlepool United as another good chance to earn three points and maintain City’s strong early-season form.

With the top two sides Chesterfield and Fleetwood facing each other this weekend, victory against Pools would put City at least in second in Sky Bet League 2 – and it is mathematically possible to go top if the leading sides draw and City get a glut of goals.

For Tis, this weekend is the same as any other as it offers a chance to register more points to put towards what will hopefully be an impressive and competitive tally come the season’s end.

“Every week is an opportunity, and we’ve got an opportunity in front of us this season,” said Tis.

“We’ve got to be good, we’ve got to be disciplined – I don’t expect us to win every single game, but I expect us to be disciplined, careful and considered and do our very best and make sensible decisions, and we will get where we need to be.

“This week is another opportunity – it’s a home game, we’ve won four out of five at home, so why shouldn’t consider ourselves a good bet for a home win.

“We can’t be complacent and we can’t expect us to knock Hartlepool out the game – they have a good away record.”

Following last weekend’s win against rivals Plymouth, there is always the danger that the Hartlepool game would be a case of ‘after the Lord Mayor’s show’.

But for the City management and team, they were happy to forgo too much revelling and get back to business and usual this week, with Hartlepool the latest threat to arrive at St James Park.

“There was a buzz on Saturday evening when we had finished at ten to three and could watch the other results whilst knowing we had three points – that’s a nice feeling,” continued Paul.  “It was a particularly good weekend’s work.

“But in football you’re never allowed to be too upbeat or too pleased with yourself for too long.  There’s always something round the corner that’s ready to upset the applecart or unsettle things.  Most of my work is spent undertaking some kind of risk management.

“Unfortunately you don’t get to enjoy it quite like the supporter – you are always trying to prevent the next problem.  It was a great Saturday evening, and then I’m wondering how everyone is, making sure that we’re strong and ready to go next week.”

He also dismissed any notion that motivation would be a factor for the players, who he feels are by their very nature an ambitious group of people.

“A fraction of my job is motivating,” he explained.  “I’m assuming my players are motivated all the time, because if you manage them correctly in terms of their personal aspirations and how their careers relate to the team.

“I don’t think our team ever need motivating really.  I think it’s about direction and giving them the information they need, and sometimes it’s what not to tell them.  I try to push them in the right direction and give them a few bits of key information which will help them.

“Motivating players is rarely a theme.  I didn’t have to motivate them for the Argyle game, and I don’t think I’ll have to motivate them for this weekend’s game either.  My job will be to set a tone that’s appropriate for the game.”

On the threat of Hartlepool, Tis is conscious that they will be arriving on a high too.  After taking some time to really get out of the starting blocks, Pools arrive on Saturday riding the crest of a wave of two away wins in a week – against Mansfield last weekend and against Sheffield United on Tuesday.

Tis continued: “Hartlepool had a slow start but they’ve had a really good week – they’ve won two away games, and their away form seems to be better than at home so I can empathise with that on the back of our form last year.  

“I can see a pattern which we understood last year, which will give me one or two pointers going into the game.”

Thinking of coming to see Exeter City v Hartlepool at St James Park?  Tickets are available in advance of the game to buy online by clicking here, or you can buy over the counter from Reception.  Tickets can also be bought on the day of the game from the booths around the ground or at the turnstiles into the Big Bank.  Click here for ticket prices.