Trevor Carson: Hartlepool United are in great shape to bounce back

Trevor Carson.
Trevor Carson.

Hartlepool United are geared up for a successful season.

So says a man who will be enjoying it from afar - Trevor Carson.

The keeper, who developed a close affinity for the club he joined in 2015, made a reluctant departure for Motherwell - he admitted he wanted to stay to help Pools get back into the Football League.

Carson told SportMail he did not want to leave Pools but said he had no choice of he was to achieve his dream of playing for Northern Ireland, who are in contention for a place at the World Cup next summer.

He even met up with boss Craig Harrison, who has impressed the 29-year-old, even if he turned down the new gaffer.

“I have to say the club couldn’t have done more to keep me,” said Carson, who was offered a new contract to stay.

“I met the new manager and I have to say he was different class.

“I came away from our meeting with my head totally scrambled!

“He told me of his vision and he has great plans for Hartlepool.

“I did not know a lot about him before we met but after listening to him for a couple of minutes I could see straight away he’s really switched on.

“He looks really good and I think he can do it if he gets the backing of the club.”

While he has left for bonnie Scotland with a heavy heart, his head is telling him that he’s left a club which is in great nick to bounce back from relegation.

Before Harrison was even appointed, Carson had talks with the people running the club at the Northern Gas & Power Stadium.

The former Sunderland and Cheltenham stopper met chairwoman/chief executive, Pam Duxbury, and head of recruitment, Paul Watson.

“I went in to see Pam and Paul because I wanted a chat about my situation,” he said.

“I wanted to know what would happen if a club came in for me, I wasn’t asking to leave.

“I told them if I was still here on the first day of pre-season that I’d be fully committed.

“I think people know the affinity I have for the club and I felt a responsibility for us going out of the league.

“I feel strongly about Hartlepool and I was pleased with what I was hearing.

“I wouldn’t have contemplated staying if the club was a shambles.

“But I have to say Pam and Paul are doing a fantastic job.

“They have put their lives at a standstill to get things right at Hartlepool.

“The budget is there to give it a right go so hopefully every effort will go into getting the club back in the league at the first attempt.

“It’s a tough league, but it can be done. There are a lot of good players at Pools and if they can add quality and experience to the squad that will be great.

“A bit of nastiness would be nice as well!”

That could be provided by former Chester skipper, the combative midfielder, Luke George but we shall see.

Harrison has brought in another international keeper to replace the one who has just left.

Scott Loach, once of Watford and Ipswich and most recently Notts County, has put pen to paper at the Vic.

A former England U21 stopper, he has spent a couple of stints with the senior Three Lions squad during the Fabio Capello reign, though he was never capped.

But he has experience throughout the Football League as well as the National League, having spent part of last season at York City.

For all his many years in the game, he is still only 29 and, at 6ft 3in, is physically-imposing.

Carson, meanwhile, is enjoying a bit of downtime ahead of the start of pre-season training at Motherwell ahead of the SPL programme as he chases the Well’s No1 jersey.