Dave Challinor reveals his ideal Hartlepool United squad size

Dave Challinor is aiming to put together a squad of between 22 and 25 players at Hartlepool United this season ahead of the return to the Football League.

Friday, 16th July 2021, 6:00 am

Challinor is under no illusion of the task facing him and the quick turnaround given the club only won promotion on June 20 and the players were straight back into training less than three weeks later ahead of the August 7 start date.

The Pools boss fully expects the club’s transfer business to go up until the end of the transfer window at the end of August but he has offered some insight into his ideal plans.

On his ideal squad size, Challinor said: “I would say between 22 and 25 players but with us being a little bit late, my timescale for getting a squad of that size together would be right up until the end of August when the transfer window closes.

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Hartlepool United manager Dave Challinor.
Hartlepool United manager Dave Challinor.

"Whether we carry 20 or just over and then we can make judgement calls in the first month about where we need to strengthen and if we need any loans in, that will be hugely important because we have such a quick turnaround.”

Pools have changed approach this summer, offering two year deals to the likes of Nicky Featherstone and Jamie Sterry, an important step says Challinor.

On the transfer window itself, Challinor added: “The dynamic changes and it’s new to me.

"It’s dipping your toe and if I go into it thinking we need a 23-man squad and all of a sudden we get five injuries in the last game in August and then we’ve only got 17 and can’t name a full bench.

"There are lots of different dynamics, seven subs is a different dynamic, having a seventh sub as a home grown player.

"The club made a decision to have a no risk strategy last summer of offering largely one year contracts.

"That no risk becomes real risk when your players do well and I did try to explain that but that’s something you have to deal with and what you do risk is potentially not much continuity in terms of your squad moving forward. Maybe that changes now in terms of how we go about things.”

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