Hartlepool United boss doesn’t know his strongest team yet

Mick Wadsworth
Mick Wadsworth

MICK Wadsworth insists he is far from settling on his strongest team ahead of the campaign curtain raiser in three weeks time.

The Pools boss appeared to field what was the best XI available to him in the final game of the recent Dutch tour.

That saw Adam Boyd paired in attack with new arrival Colin Nish, while fellow summer signing Nobby Solano lined up in midfield alongside Gary Liddle, Antony Sweeney and Andy Monkhouse.

The back five threw up no surprises with Scott Flinders protected by a rearguard unit of Steve Haslam, Sam Collins, Peter Hartley and Evan Horwood.

Watching from the sidelines and nursing minor niggles in Heiloo were senior duo Paul Murray and Neil Austin, as well as James Brown, who is no doubt drinking at the last-chance saloon in terms of injury-plagued seasons.

Pools still have seven warm-up matches to play before journeying to MK Dons for the League One opener on August 6.

And in that time Wadsworth admits his thinking is open to persuasion.

“It wasn’t necessarily my strongest team in that last game, but it was stronger,” he told SportMail today.

“We were without Aussie, Muzza and Brownie, so I think they’d have something to say about that.

“But I honestly don’t know what my strongest team is.

“We certainly eased off the youngsters in that second game, but Darren Holden came on and did very well – he’s an adequate replacement for Evan, there’s no doubt about that.

“But we’ve got new players and different combinations still to try and quite a few games in which to do that.”

Full story in Friday’s Mail