Craig Harrison eager to find Hartlepool United’s missing link in the transfer market

Craig Harrison
Craig Harrison

Craig Harrison believes Hartlepool United are “missing something” up top.
And as a result the Pools boss is searching far and wide to land an experienced striker to complement his young forward line.

Although, he accepts finding a 25-goal a season striker is easier said than done.

We need to find a solution and are trying to get someone in

“It’s clear at this moment in time we’re missing something in front of goal,” said Harrison ahead of tomorrow’s visit to Leyton Orient’s Matchroom Stadium.

“Franksy (Jonathan Franks) has contributed with goals, Rhys Oates is just getting fit again and then we have a 17-year-old in Connor Simpson.

“Devante (Rodney) is 19 and he has been positive out wide but we’re relying on those players for the goals.

“They have been good, but we are looking for more and trying to find the right one.

“Padraig Amond left not so long ago, Jake Cassidy has been injured and will be out for another six-seven weeks which is disappointing.

“We need a solution and are trying to get someone in, but strikers who score 25 goals a season don’t grow on trees.”

Since Amond left for Newport County towards the end of the summer window, Pools have looked a body light up front.

That applies in terms of numbers but also in experience and goals, with the Irishman netting more than 40 goals for Grimsby Town the last time he ventured into the fifth tier.

It is something Harrison and his close band of coaches are looking to address.

“We do need to bring someone else in with a bit more experience to offer a bit of help for the younger players, which is an on going thing – we’re working hard on that,” he said.

“It’s about picking the right one for the right environment, we need to look at a player’s character and what he is all about. Will he fit in? Will he work hard?

“That’s as important as anything else. It’s a project for myself, Jenks (Paul Jenkins) and Batesy (Matthew Bates) to try and get someone in.”

While much of the focus away from the pitch has been on forward areas, Harrison admits he has been delighted with what he has seen from his backline in recent weeks, despite the makeshift nature of it.

“At the other end of the pitch we have defended well. The centre-halves have performed and the back four have been brilliant,” he said.

“Devs (Nicky Deverdics) isn’t a left-back, but has fitted in well and has great delivery, Scotty Loach has been magnificent and Mags (Carl Magnay) is Mags – a real solid defender, experienced and a good lad in the dressing room. A solid, all-round professional.

“They have kept three clean sheets in four and defended well. It’s a big contribution from them.

“Last time out we took a point and could have had more. It was tough for defenders, but we were happy with a clean sheet.”