Hartlepool United skipper Billy Paynter bounces back from miserable days at Carlisle

Billy Paynter celebrates after scoring Pools' first goal at York last week
Billy Paynter celebrates after scoring Pools' first goal at York last week

Billy Paynter is enjoying the time of his life at Hartlepool United.

The much-travelled striker has beaten his goal tally from 2014-15 already, after bagging three goals in the opening four matches.

Billy’s led from the front from first coming here

RONNIE MOORE

Pools boss Ronnie Moore is getting the best out of Paynter, who he signed in the summer before installing him as captain

The 31-year-old spent last season with Carlisle United, scoring just two goals in 21 games for the Cumbrians.

It was a miserable year for the Scouser, who fell out with Carlisle boss Keith Curle, who agreed to cancel his contract at Brunton Park.

Carlisle’s loss has been Pools gain and he looks an inspired signing.

“There’s no doubt about that,” said Moore.

“I think it’s the way you handle Billy.

“Last season, he was not handled in the right way.

“But he’s come here – he’s the captain, he’s a leader of men and proved that here.

“Everything he’s done has been fantastic.

“He’s led from the front from first coming here, he’s won all his races from day one and did the same when we went to the army camp.

“It helps having someone like him in the dressing room.”

Paynter led the side today at Stevenage and, by a quirk of fate, he will come up against Curle and Carlisle when the Cumbrians come to Victoria Park next Saturday.

Before then, Pools have the not-so-small matter of a Capital One Cup clash with Bournemouth at the Vic on Tuesday.

Paynter took his team to victory in the first round at Fleetwood Town when he headed in Jake Carroll’s perfect free-kick.

He followed that up with a stunner in the win at York City and was a whisker away from a fourth in four games against Newport on Tuesday only to have his shot cleared off the line.

“He has three goals in four games, you could not ask for a better start,” said Moore.

Tickets are selling well for the tie against the Cherries, while there will also be availability on the turnstiles prior to the 7.45pm kick-off.