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Exclusive: Pools could yet sign players, as prospective new owners eye special dispensation ruling

Raj Singh.
Raj Singh.

Hartlepool United could still sign players on a rulebook technicality, despite the National League deadline having passed.

Speaking to those close to the takeover there was a despondency after last Thursday’s 5pm fifth tier player registration deadline passed without the lifting of a long-standing transfer embargo at Victoria Park.

But, the Mail has learned Pools could ask the league for special dispensation to sign players, after the resolution of financial uncertainty.

This is most likely to apply to players out of contract, or loan deals. It is not yet known whether they league would sanction any permanent deals from clubs inside or outside the division.

And it is our understanding that should Raj Singh and Jeff Stelling take over at Pools, and the league ratify it in due course, Pools will ask the question to the governing bodies.

There is, of course, no guarantee they will be granted the right to sign beyond the deadline.

Pools have been under a National League transfer embargo since October.

It was placed on the club after they were unable to prove to the league that they had the sufficient funds to fulfil their league schedule.

The embargo has meant Craig Harrison and Matthew Bates have been unable to add to their squad, despite the departures of key starters Nicky Deverdics, Keith Watson and Jonathan Franks as well as the likes of Conor Simpson, Tomi Adeloye and James Thorne.

Adeloye was the last signing completed by Pools. That went through on October 2.

Pools are likely to argue mitigating circumstances, changeover in ownership and previous financial mismanagement, should not tie the hands of the new proprietors.