Consistency is Devante Rodney’s only obstacle at Hartlepool United - Matthew Bates

Devante Rodney celebrates his last minute equaliser'. Picture Andrew Roe/AHPIX LTD
Devante Rodney celebrates his last minute equaliser'. Picture Andrew Roe/AHPIX LTD

Matthew Bates has challenged Devante Rodney to reproduce his goalscoring Fylde cameo more often, if he’s to hold down a regular starting spot.

The 19-year-old striker was Hartlepool United’s hero on Saturday.

Rodney produced a piece of magic in the 94th minute to level things at 3-3 and rescue what could prove a vital National League point come the end of the season.

And while that kind of strike might have come as a surprise to some observers, Bates says he produces that kind of thing regularly in training.

But for Rodney, it is about taking his ability, willingness to learn and enthusiasm out on to the pitch and becoming a real asset to Pools in their final nine games of the campaign.

“I hope he scores plenty more goals like that,” said Bates of Rodney, who is pushing for a recall for tomorrow night’s visit to fellow strugglers Barrow.

“It was a great finish. You can’t take that away from the player.

“But he does have that in his locker.

“The only thing is that he needs to be more consistent.

“He has come on, worked hard and he deserves his goal.”

Meanwhile, Bates has moved to praise the player’s attitude, especially after the former Sheffield Wednesday striker was taken out the team recently.

“He is a learner, a nice lad and he deserves everything he gets in the game,” said Bates.