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PRESS CONFERENCE LIVE: Hartlepool v Swindon Town

Good morning Swindon fans and thank you for joining us for today's Swindon Town press conference with Ben garner as his side travels to Hartlepool United on Saturday seeking to keep Swindon's playoff hopes alive. Join Total Sport Swindon's Ryan Walker from 8.25am.

9:00AM

That concludes today's press conference. Thank you for joining us.

8:59AM

Garner on his self-improvement this season:

"There has been a huge improvement in all areas. It's been a great season and I have thoroughly enjoyed it but it has been very challenging without doubt with what we inherited. I would like to think I will never have to go through what we experienced again but the clarity of the situation helped. Although we couldn't have a big squad and were restricted, that clarity helped us focus on what we could control and that will be a big learning curve moving forwards.

"We have made great strides as a club. The last few weeks have been a bit difficult in terms of not picking up the points we wanted but we can't lose focus on where we came from and where we want to go. I've really enjoyed it here, it is a fantastic football club with great potential and we want to build a team and club that everyone in Swindon can be proud of."

8:56AM

Garner on the difficulties of playing with freedom:

"I think it's key and you don't want to overthink things in your head. We know we have to be intense and compete but if you are like that when you get the ball then it's not going to help you. We have to find that balance and I want the players to express themselves in the final third, taking people on, to get the shots away and be positive because we have talented players, especially in forward areas.


"To get the best for the team and themselves they need to have that mentality where they love playing and to have that bravery. I think we've been pretty good with that this season, more so in home games we have been affected a little bit and that is where we need to be mentally stronger as a group and trust in what we are doing. 5 minutes into the game on Monday we had played backwards and square and there were jeers from the crowd at times.

"We have to ignore that. The supporters here are great and will have their opinions but we have to do what is needed to win the game. That's ultimately what every supporter wants and we have to stick to the gameplan. That gets results and everyone is happy. If we change that then it doesn't help anyone and we have that strength in character to believe in what we are doing regardless of circumstances. If that is the best way to win the game we have to stick to it."

8:45AM

Garner on Tyreece Simpson wanting to leave Ipswich:

"I hadn't seen that he wanted to leave but we just won't be in that market with the transfer fee that will require. I want to see him kick on and do great things in the game."

8:44AM

Garner on preparing for Hartlepool:

"I don't think there is any team on the beach so to say and that is the same with Hartlepool. These are professional players and I don't think that is a term that should be in the game. Sometimes in these games these clubs learn more about these players and I am expecting a tough game knowing that we have to go and play really well.

"We will go there with freedom and have to be brave with how we play and that is our only focus."

8:42AM

Garner on Swindon Town penalty shootout yesterday:

"It was a bit of fun and some interaction with supporters and it was a great turnout. The players were great and it was fantastic to see that much support."

8:41AM

Garner on loan relationships:

"I think as a club this season we are an attractive option for clubs looking to loan players out to. We must be up there with minutes played by loan players in the EFL this season and we have built good relationships with parent clubs. We develop loan players and they are better players than when they came through the door."

8:40AM

Garner on Joe Tomlinson:

"We have contacted Peterborough and are waiting to find out, it is there call about that they want to happen with his rehab. We are waiting to find out on that."

8:39AM

Garner on McKirdy and injuries:

"He is fine, he is good and has had a good week. He was flying all over the place yesterday and is ready to go tomorrow. Rob Hunt and Joe Tomlinson are both out for the remainder of the season."

8:38AM

Garner on playoffs:

"I'm not going to look [at the table]. We need 10 points minimum out of the 12 and if that ends up not being enough then we have to live with that. I want the players to go and enjoy tomorrow and show what they are capable of."

8:37AM

Garner on Hartlepool:

"They have done well since coming up and they will want to finish this season strongly. Their home form is good but we have to focus on us and go and get a result. It was a good game in the reverse fixture and was a good three points for us. We need another three points tomorrow and then see where that takes us."

8:36AM

Garner on plans for Hartlepool:

"We are training early today and will then make the trip up to Hartepool. We will stop off on the way to refuel the players and then up to the hotel. It is very much the same as when we went to Carlisle."

8:35AM

Garner on conceding against Orient:

"They went down to 10-men and to give them a second goal gave us a mountain to climb. It was poor play on our part and we had chances to win the game but we just didn't have the final ball. There is no lack of effort or wanting to win, there were just moments in the game. There was only one team in the league that had more shots than us, we just need to show that cutting edge on quality that we did at Harrogate."

8:34AM

Garner on reflecting on Easter weekend:

"It was a really good Friday performance and disappointing on Monday. Watching it back we did incredibly well to lose the game on Monday and it was two mistakes that cost us the game. There is no margin for error anymore and we have t make sure performances and results are good."

8:31AM

Ben Garner has now joined us.

8:28AM

The good news is that we are free from technical difficulties today and in the press conference call waiting for Ben Garner to join us.

8:25AM

Good morning and thank you for joining us for today's press conference with Ben Garner previewing tomorrow's clash as Swindon travel to Hartlepool United seeking to keep their League Two playoff hopes alive.

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