Dave Challinor discusses Sheffield United striker David Parkhouse's difficult loan spell at Hartlepool United as he prepares to give him FA Cup opportunity
Dave Challinor is preparing to give David Parkhouse another chance to impress at Hartlepool United despite a ‘fragmented’ loan spell so far.
The 21-year-old has made just three starts in all competitions for Pools so far this season, scoring twice.
But he hasn’t featured since November 24 where he came on as a late substitute at Barnet.
And after being left out of the last three matchday squads despite no injury concerns, Parkhouse’s time at Victoria Park looks to be drawing to a close.
His loan spell from Sheffield United is set to expire in January.
International duty with Northern Ireland under-21s as well as off-field issues have hampered the striker’s impact in the north east, but Challinor is prepared to give him another opportunity to impress between now and the new year.
“Parky is fine, I had a good chat with him last week because he’s had some things going on at home and we were a little bit concerned,” Challinor told The Mail.
“He’s a strong lad, he’s used to being away from home so he’s okay, we just need to get him back to where he was in the first couple of weeks with us.
"In hindsight, when you loan players in who have international commitments, it can be bitty and fragmented, it’s the first time I’ve done it and it hasn’t allowed him to get a constant run of games or us to get him settled and he’s suffered from that with his confidence a little bit.”
The arrival of Luke Armstrong as well as the progress of Joe Grey has seen Parkhouse fall down the pecking order at Pools.
"He just needs to build his confidence and with Luke coming in, there’s certainly an option of playing two up top,” Challinor added.
“Luke coming in may put some pressure on Parky in terms of competition but it may take off a bit of pressure off because we’ve got a goalscorer up there along with Mason [Bloomfield], Joe and Oatesy [Rhys Oates] being good options for us up the top end of the pitch.
"Parky continues to work hard and we’re looking at the Trophy game at Halifax as a chance for those lads who haven’t been involved as much to get some game time, they’ll get an opportunity there.”