Graeme Lee set to hand opportunities to Hartlepool United's fringe players including Rotherham United defender
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With Hartlepool United all but mathematically safe from relegation, Lee has revealed he is now considering shaking things up both in terms of system and personnel in the final month of the campaign.
And one player who looks set to benefit is Jake Hull.
The Rotherham United defender arrived at the Suit Direct Stadium on-loan in January but has yet to start a game for Lee, making just two late cameo appearances in that time.
But Lee insists that is not down to Hull’s ability, with the 20-year-old impressing the Pools boss in training, instead it is owing to the form of first choice defenders Neill Byrne and Timi Odusina who have performed admirably since Lee’s arrival.
Lee, though, admits he is keen to get a better look of Hull between now and the end of the season in case he wants to bring the Millers defender back to the North East next season.
“We’re starting to look at things,” said Lee.
“At the moment you’re looking at players [who’ve not had as much game time]. There’s players where there’s decisions to be made but there’s also players, the likes of Jake Hull, who I want to get on the field.
“He’s done everything right in training, he's just been stopped by the progress of the other centre halves who have played and who have done well so it’s been difficult to get him involved.
“Then you’ve got Gary who has been doing well when he’s played games but then the formation has took him out of the team.
“But it’s people like Jake Hull who I’m desperate to get on the pitch because I want a good look at him because I keep saying to the lads he might go on the pitch and make us think ‘hold on a minute.’
“He shows it in training so it’ll be exciting to get him on the pitch and have a look especially when I speak to Rotherham again. If we can get him on the pitch he might be something we’ll want to have a look at next season.”
And following their defeat to Salford City last weekend, Lee believes his decision to shuffle his pack may have been made easier with Pools out of sorts against Gary Bowyer’s side.
“It’s been on my mind how we do it but I still want the lads performing,” said Lee.
“There’s lads who are going to come in, they’ll get the opportunity, but it’s about how many changes you make at one time.
“I wanted Fletch to get an opportunity with a couple of home games on the bounce which he did and then you’re looking at other areas of the pitch where you’ve got other bodies to try and bring in and get game time and when you perform like that it makes it easier to do that.”