Jake Cassidy has opened up on the reasons behind his loan move to Maidstone and is looking forward to a new challenge.
The 25-year-old only signed for Hartlepool last summer but had made just five appearances for Matthew Bates' side this campaign, two of which came from the bench.
For that reason, the former Wolves frontman was allowed to leave the Super 6 Stadium to join a National League rival last week and, after making his debut in Maidstone's win at Braintree last Saturday, Cassidy is looking forward to a fresh start.
"I only came down late Friday night so it was the first time I've met the lads and the gaffer and they've welcomed me brilliantly," said Cassidy.
"I think he's told all the lads it's a fresh start, he's new, the staff are new and they've brought in a lot of new players.
Cassidy spent last Friday night at a Braintree guest house waiting to meet his new Maidstone team-mates, after securing a three-month loan move.
Other clubs were interested in the striker, who chose to join Harry Wheeler's side after speaking to fellow loanee Simon Walton.
"The guest house was interesting, let's say that, but it was only a bed for a night."
"I know Simon very well. He just sold Harry and the club to me and he's an exciting young manager with a clear game plan and it's something I wanted to be a part of.
"It's getting back to playing football and doing what I love."
Cassidy netted five times during his debut season for Pools following a spell with Guiseley
He remained a part of Matthew Bates' plans during pre-season but as one of the club's high-earners, Cassidy know he might have to move on.
"In the summer Hartlepool put me on the transfer list and said they needed to cut budgets, which was fair enough," the striker added.
"They were open and honest with me.
"I wasn't going to play there, for non-footballing reasons in my opinion, and my opportunity came to get out.
"I've had some good clubs but it's not gone as well as I'd have liked.
"Things happen, injuries and in your personal life, but I'm just focused now on getting back up that football ladder and seeing how far I can get."