Can Hartlepool United signing produce another big impact with boss Craig Harrison?

Jake Cassidy
Jake Cassidy

Craig Harrison has already seen Jake Cassidy make one huge impact during their brief time working together.

And the manager will hope his first of six Hartlepool United signings can repeat the feat at Victoria Park.

Within the first 10 minutes he’d fired a shot into the top corner and [chief executive] Jez Moxey came up and wanted to sign him there and then – at half time!


The striker was a raw teenager when Harrison plucked him from local football in Wales to sign for Airbus UK in the Welsh Premier League.

Not that he was there for long – Wolves soon took him to the Championship.

Molineux was the first in a series of destinations for Cassidy who has played for Wolves, Oldham and Guiseley plus Tranmere Rovers (quite successfully), Notts County and Southend on loan deals.

Cassidy has had some bad luck along the way, a broken leg sustained while with Oldham has checked what was looking a promising career.

But he has got back on the proverbial horse at Guiseley, scoring eight times last season in the National League, prompting Harrison to sign the 6ft 2in forward.

Cassidy, still just 24, will today be working with Harrison for the first time in seven years and will be on the training ground in Durham with his team-mates.

Harrison will hope Cassidy’s experience and strength, combined with their old relationship will prove a good mix for Pools ahead of what they hope will be a promotion season.

“Jake is a player I’ve worked with before,” said the man who won six Welsh Premier League titles in a row with The New Saints.

“It was short and sweet [at Airbus UK].

“He was only there for a month and a half and played a few games in pre-season, he didn’t even play a competitive game.

“We had some quite high-profile friendlies with Wrexham and Everton and he played really well in them and caught the eye of Wolves.

“I remember being sat in Wolves’ training ground and I had eight Premier League clubs ringing me wanting Jake but he’d made his mind up about Wolves.

“He played in a Reserve Team game for them and within the first 10 minutes he’d smashed into someone turned and fired a shot into the top corner and [chief executive] Jez Moxey came up and wanted to sign him there and then – at half time!”

Harrison added in an interview with the Pools website: “Jake’s had a few ups and downs since, but he scored a lot of goals at Tranmere Rovers.

“He had a little bit of a tough time with injury but last season he played for a few months at Guiseley.

“He got eight goals and played a huge part in keeping Guiseley in the league.

“I just think he really enjoyed those months.

“We know each other and have a good understanding and have a good personal relationship too.”

Pools reported for pre-season this morning, when it was expected that out-of-contract duo Rhys Oates and Brad Walker would attend.

Carl Magnay has put pen to paper on a new deal though Oates and Walker have turned down the terms offered by the club.