Luke James set to be rested for trip to Colchester

Luke James jumps to win a header. Picture by FRANK REID
Luke James jumps to win a header. Picture by FRANK REID

LUKE James could be left at home on Good Friday when Pools make the long trek to Colchester United, writes CRAIG HOPE.

The 17-year-old wonderkid has only just returned from a seven-game absence because of growing pains in his back and boss Neale Cooper is mindful of the six-hour coach journey to Essex.

And, with Brentford coming to the Vic on Easter Monday, Cooper looks set to save James for that game.

“We need to watch Luke a bit,” he said.

“He’s come back from a while out and with games Friday and Monday it’s something to think about.

“So we will weigh up Luke’s situation.

“He has had a back problem and one which was brought on sitting on the bus coming back from Wycombe.

“Do we want him sitting on a bus for hours again with a game to come at home a couple of days later?

“That’s what I am talking to the physios about this week.

“Do we want him to travel or do we keep him nice and fresh for Monday? He’s a pretty important players for us.”

And Cooper does not under-estimate the impact his teenage striker can have.

“All the boys were pleased to get him back – and that’s from Sam Collins and Paul Murray at the top end down over,” the Pools chief said.

“He’s already got the respect of all the lads and it shows how much of an impact he’s had already.

“That respect comes with his attitude as well and they can see he is a kid who just loves to learn and loves football.”

Meanwhile, James Poole is out of the Easter weekend double header because of his lingering thigh and hamstring problems.