Pools ace Jonathan Franks determined to help surge up the table

Jonathan Franks. Picture by Frank Reid
Jonathan Franks. Picture by Frank Reid

Home is where the heart is for Jonathan Franks – and getting Hartlepool United moving again would mean the world to him.

The 27-year-old, from Stockton, might have begun his career with Middlesbrough, but Pools is his club.

After trying his hand in the Scottish Premier League with Ross County, he is happy to have returned to Victoria Park after two years north of the border.

“I’m glad to be back,” said the forward, who scored the winner in Monday’s first win of the National League season, at Guiseley.

“I enjoyed it there but, coming home, there’s only one place I wanted to be.

“I was training with the squad for a bit before I signed here – it was good to get to know the lads and the new staff here.

“It was a good experience. It’s a totally different game up there.

“Hopefully I can pass that experience from playing in Scotland on and pass my experience on of what this club is all about because I’ve been here before.

“It’s a different club now, a lot of changes, but a few familiar faces.

“It’s a lovely club and we all want to get it back to where it should be.”

Franks has always been liked by the fans – his work-rate is terrific and he’ll take people on.

His scoring ratio is a fair one for a player often shunted out wide and his first goal since his return to the club, securing all three points at Guiseley, was vital to the cause.

“There’s a lot to do, but it was a step in the right direction,” said Franks, who will be looking for a first home goal in blue and white against Maidstone this afternoon.

“We won’t be getting carried away.

“We need to show that spirit and determination again and take it into this match.

“Monday wasn’t a pretty game – I probably had the ball into feet about six times.

“But if it means three points winning ugly away from home then we will take it.”

Franks said the fact Pools were able to get their noses in front for the first time this season made a “huge difference”.

He added: “The National League can be physical and direct.

“At any level, the first goal is crucial and we haven’t been getting it and then we have fallen to pieces in the second half on the back of it.

“We got the first goal this time out and it makes a huge difference to the lads in terms of confidence and belief.

“It wasn’t pretty, but we were determined.

“It was nice to score, a great feeling to send the fans home happy.”