Hartlepool United’s Craig Hignett targeting loan market in January as permanent deals look unlikely

Hartlepool United boss Craig Hignett
Hartlepool United boss Craig Hignett

Hartlepool United will be shopping in the loan market, when they look to strengthen their squad in January.

Permanent deals for players, as things stand, are not on the agenda, according to Pools boss Craig Hignett.

The manager understands the need for reinforcements in the winter window, especially after watching his players’ abject performance in the 4-0 FA Cup loss to Port Vale.

But without key departures, funds are unlikely to be made available to increase the club’s wage bill, with only temporary deals on the table.

Hignett said: “If I want to loan somebody I can.

“As for getting someone permanent we will have to wait and see how January goes.

“I think that is where we are at. I know that, which means I can half plan for it.”

Hignett has not been resting on his laurels, though, the gaffer says he has already drawn up a January wishlist, whether or not players depart from the Northern Gas & Power Stadium.

“If something happens and frees funds up then that will be a bonus. But we will wait and see,” he continued.

“We have targets. We know what we want to do.

“We have planned for a scenario where players leave. We will be ready is some things happen.”

Top of the gaffer’s shopping list is some steel.

Pools lack a player with the ability to put their foot in. And whether that be a defender, midfielder or forward, Hignett is keen to increase the fight in his starting XI next month.

“We are not nasty enough. We haven’t got a nasty one,” he said.

“We have tried to bring a nasty one in, or a nasty three.

“We want people. We tried to bring players in to do that in pre-season but we missed out.

“To be fair I am happy with what I have got - they are all good footballers.

“It could be a central defender, or a midfielder or a striker but they have to be nasty.

“It is something I am looking to address.

“We want tougher characters. I don’t want my players to just accept what is happening.”

Meanwhile, Pools are hosting their first-ever comedy night in the Club’s Centenary Lounge tomorrow, after linking-up with local comedy club Hilarity Bites.

Comedians, Sam Avery and Martin Mor, are lined up to perform. The night which is to be hosted by well-known MC Steffen Peddie.

Tickets for the event are on sale in advance from the ticket office priced at £7. They will also be available on the night at £10. Doors open at 7pm.