Revealed! Hartlepool United's position on transfers and Jonathan Franks

Former forward Jonathan Franks is back training at Hartlepool United's Peterlee training ground.

Saturday, 20th October 2018, 10:26 pm
Updated Saturday, 20th October 2018, 10:38 pm
Jonathan Franks.
Jonathan Franks.

But a move for Stockton-born player, who left Pools earlier this year, is not on Matthew Bates' agenda.

Since his season with Icelandic side IBV ended in the last week of September, Franks has been training with the Pools' first-team.

Franks celebrates scoring at Orient last season.

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The Mail has learned this is purely to allow the player to retain fitness, rather than with view to bringing the 28-year-old on board for a third spell at Victoria Park.

Due to cross border transfer red tape Bates would be unable to complete a deal for the player.

The move could, however, be made in January, although at this stage it is not believed to be high on the manager's list of priorities.

Franks left Pools for fifth tier rivals Wrexham in February with the club on the brink of administration and in need of cutting costs.

Manager at the time, Craig Harrison, was unable to replace the player due to a transfer embargo placed on the club by National League due to financial irregularities.

In his second spell at Pools, Franks, who was in the stands for Saturday's 1-0 FA Cup win over Kidsgrove Athletic, played 21 games, scoring six goals and providing four assists.

On the transfer front, Bates is keen to add a striker to his ranks in the coming weeks, having freed up room in the budget this week with the release of central defender Louis Laing.

Laing this week signed for National League North Blyth Spartans.

Talks are understood to be ongoing with owner Raj Singh, director of football Craig Hignett and the club's scouting team in order to bring in the right kind of player to the Pools squad.

On the subject, manager Bates said: "There are plenty of players out there but we have got to find the right ones. With respect to this level there are always players who you can bring in.

"What you have to make sure is that when you have a good group, full of good players, a good dressing room who all get on, is that the right boxes are ticked.

"We don’t want to upset what we already have here.

"We are doing our due diligence and we will see what happens over the coming weeks."