Bird calls on Hartlepool to build on momentum

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RYAN Bird has called on Hartlepool United to build on the momentum gained this week – even though he is unlikely to feature in both of the upcoming home fixtures.

The 27-year-old’s loan spell from League Two rivals Cambridge United finishes after Mansfield Town visit Victoria Park on Saturday.

Mansfield is a huge game, they aren’t too far ahead and we need to be on form.

Hartlepool striker Ryan Bird

And with Cambridge visiting the North East the following weekend, it is highly unlikely his parent club would allow him to play IF his loan deal is extended.

The emergency loan window closes next Thursday, a day after Bird’s month-long spell officially ends.

Boss Ronnie Moore will be keen to extend it further, with Marvin Morgan and Marlon Harewood struggling for form and top league scorer Scott Fenwick out injured.

Bird played a key role in the 2-0 win over Oxford United, scoring the opener before missing a second-half penalty, Neil Austin on hand to convert the rebound.

And the Slough-born hitman is looking to extend the winning streak.

“We have been good at home recently and should have got a draw against Burton Albion, but we lost that one in the final few minutes,” said Bird.

“Home form is important for us and we need to recreate the away performances from this week.

“Mansfield is a huge game, they aren’t too far ahead and we need to be on form.

“The crowd will be right behind us and hopefully we can get another win.

“I will be 100 per cent ready for Saturday, I had an ice bath after the game because my legs had gone but I’ll be raring to go,” added Bird, who ran himself into the ground on Tuesday night.

Bird, who has two goals to his name since signing on loan, is enjoying his spell in the side alongside Jonathan Franks.

Moore opted to go with the duo for the wins over Morecambe and Oxford, with Bird saying they are beginning to forge an understanding.

Neither let the Us defence enjoy a moments peace at the Kassam Stadium – and Bird believes that hard work paid off.

“The belief around the lads is growing,” said Bird.

“Sometimes if you just work hard, every game, then you do create a little bit of luck.

“And we are all working our socks off.

“Working hard then makes other teams panic and it has worked well for us these last two games.

“Me and Franksy up front are helping to set the tone for the team and we try to be annoying for the defenders.

“Otherwise, if they get time on the ball then they are happy and will take that all day long.”