Dave Challinor believes this key Hartlepool United player will prove a 'huge asset' for years to come

Dave Challinor has hailed the impact of Nicky Featherstone and believes he will be a ‘huge asset’ for years to come.

Tuesday, 13th July 2021, 4:45 pm

The midfielder has agreed a two-year deal to extend his stay in the North East having come full circle with Pools, suffering the pain of relegation from the Football League to playing a key part in promotion this season after a four-year stint in non-league.

There was interest from elsewhere in Featherstone but he gave Pools a boost by agreeing a new deal.

And Challinor was delighted to secure him for another couple of seasons at least.

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Hartlepool United midfielder Nicky Featherstone.
Hartlepool United midfielder Nicky Featherstone.

Challinor said: “There was obviously interest in Feath and he had an important decision to make.

"He knows how important he is to us and we’ve tried to look after him and give him a rest but with how we want to play and how I want us to play as a team, his position and role is massively important.

"It’s easy to say he’s replaceable, everyone is replaceable but we couldn’t have got someone else with the same amount of experience, know-how and understanding of his role and our set-up within our price range.

"It helps massively to have him here and he knows how valued he is and from his perspective, he’s come full circle with the club.

"He’s been at rock bottom and vilified at times and made a scapegoat but he’s turned that around and is now someone who is admired hugely by the fanbase and has got the club back to the Football League.

"I’m delighted he’s taken the opportunity to stay with us because he’s earned the right to play in the Football League again and I’m glad he’s decided that he wants to keep doing that because he’ll be a huge asset to us for the next couple of years.”

Featherstone made his first appearance back in November 2014 against Newport County and has since gone on to make 294 appearances for the club.

The midfielder started his career at Hull City making eight appearances and then went on to play over 400 career games for Grimsby, Hereford, Walsall, Scunthorpe and Harrogate Town and Pools.

On Monday, Pools confirmed their first signing of the summer with defender Reagan Ogle joining from Accrington Stanley.

The 22-year-old full-back spent time on loan in the National League at Altrincham last season, facing Pools in a 1-1 draw at the J Davidson Stadium back in March.

Ogle has also spent time in the National League North with Southport and AFC Fylde while also making eight senior appearances for Accrington after joining the club as a scholar in 2015.

The Australian is Pools’ first new arrival of the summer as Challinor prepares his squad for the upcoming League Two season on August 7.

Pools have also confirmed that Timi Odusina and Mark Shelton have had their extension options at the club triggered, keeping them at Victoria Park until the end of the 2021-22 campaign.

Jamie Sterry and Ben Killip are also extending their stay at The Vic.

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