Hartlepool United start transfer search in hope of National League embargo removal

Hartlepool United have already restarted their search for additions to the playing squad, in the hope that their transfer embargo could be lifted before the end of the window.

Monday, 22nd January 2018, 6:00 am
Could Keith Watson retunr to Pools?
Could Keith Watson retunr to Pools?

Manager Craig Harrison has been hamstrung by being unable to freshen up his struggling squad this month.

A National League transfer ban has been in place at Victoria Park since November, preventing Pools signings, but not putting a block on departures.

But with hopes high a local entrepreneur could be about to save the club, and take it off the hands of current owner John Blackledge, of Sage investments, light is at the end of the tunnel with the embargo.

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Pools were sanctioned by the governing body because they have not produced the correct paperwork for certain transactions, but it is absolutely nothing to do with financial irregularities.

So far this window, four players have left Pools - James Thorne, Keith Watson, Jonathan Franks and Connor Simpson, who the club managed to claw back £50,000 up front to ease their financial worries.

It is understood Harrison is desperate to add to his ranks, with a defender and striker thought to be at the top of his transfer wishlist.

In hope of the ban being lifted, Pools did have deals for the likes of Sunderland midfielder Elliot Embleton and Middlesbrough full-back Nathan McGinley in the pipeline, but they had to pull out of talks due to their current plight.

A deal for Watson may not be dead, with St Johnstone certain to send the Scot back out this month.