NEAL ARDLEY hopes that his York City players will ‘calmly’ put the reverse defeat to Hartlepool United behind them with the Minstermen making the trip to the Suit Direct Stadium on Saturday afternoon (3pm).

York’s last defeat in the Vanarama National League came to Hartlepool in November, with a 3-1 loss at the LNER Community Stadium, something which Ardley hopes can fuel his players in Saturday’s reverse fixture.

Ardley admitted that he expects a tough match at a difficult place to visit, with the York boss hoping that his players can handle the rowdy conditions that he is anticipating.

“Strangely enough they were not in a good place when they came down to play us, they were on a bad run but were the far better team on the day,” Ardley admitted.

“We didn’t turn up and I’m hoping that the players calmly want to put that right, because that was our last league loss.

“It was a really poor performance, it’s a tough place to go is Hartlepool and we don’t want to let them get ahead on steam with the new manager with a good start to the game.

“We’ve got to make sure we’re at it from the word go, as we have to be every game.

“If the boys keep performing the way they are, and keep those levels high, then Hartlepool will have to play a high game to get a result.

“The locality of the two teams puts an edge on the game, and the way that we performed here was disappointing in front of a bad crowd.

“There are a lot of things that come five o’clock, you want to feel a bit satisfaction about.

“At the end of the day it is about three points, we’ve got to fight our backsides off to get it.

“You have to approach each game at the moment with a game plan, they’ve got a new manager in the dugout on Saturday whose brought two new signings in and might change things around.

“I can’t guess too much on what he’s trying to do or what he’s going to play, but I can put a team out that I think will be able to play the conditions and to be able to handle the intensity of the match. You have to treat every game differently.”

Ardley also discussed Hartlepool’s latest recruits, completing the double signing of Otis Khan and Luke Waterfall from Grimsby Town, with the latter previously earning promotion from the National League with both Grimsby and Lincoln City.

“Any signings that the club have taken the time to get right, will be potentially a good signing.

“Any signings give the clubs a lift, the manager has looked at them and said that he likes those two.

“Luke has been promoted with Grimsby, he’s a very experienced centre-halve with a good voice, and I know that Hartlepool have had a difficult time lately so it’s good to have someone coming in fresh that hasn’t been a part of that.

“Otis is a very direct and quick winger, if they feel like that is what they have lacked in the team, then they will obviously be very good signings for them.

“We will be mindful of the fact they’ll play, but again, if we don’t perform then it doesn’t really matter, but if we perform then they have to perform really well.”

It will be newly-appointed Kevin Phillips’ second outing in the Hartlepool dugout, having suffered a 1-0 loss to Kidderminster Harriers in midweek, but the City boss expects a tricky game from his managerial counterpart.

“I’m sure we would have played against each other at some point back in the day, maybe in the Premier League!

“He was an exceptional striker, he’s had a wonderful career and did a great job with South Shields.

“He comes in with good pedigree and I wish him all the best after five o’clock on Saturday.”