Hartlepool United is a club Scott Loach can finally call home

Scott Loach
Scott Loach

After acting as the last line of defence for 12 clubs over a 12-year career, Scott Loach finally feels like Hartlepool United is a club he can call home.

Having started life at Watford as a kid, Nottinghamshire-born Loach’s career has taken him the length and breadth of the country.

Spells at Morecambe, Bradford City and Ipswich Town have more recently been capped off with time at Peterborough United, Notts County and York City.

Nowhere has he made as many appearances as he did at the Hornets - 156.

But in one season he’s already made more appearances at Pools than anywhere else in his career.

"I’ve said this since I came here, it feels like home," said Loach.

"The fans, the club, everything about this move has been great for me. I have played for a lot of clubs in recent years but it is nice to be at one where I feel wanted.

"I have loved every minute of being at Hartlepool, despite the fact we, as a team, have struggled on the park.

"I came here to play every game and I managed to do that last season. Hopefully this season will be no different."

Meanwhile, Hartlepool legend Ritchie Humphreys is set to take part in an Iron Man challenge, which could see the former Pools midfielder miss England’s potential World Cup final appearance on Sunday.

Should Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions side get past Croatia in this evening’s semi-final in Moscow, they will make it through to the tournament’s showpiece game for the first time in 52 years.

But, whether England are there or not, Humphreys will not be watching.

Instead, he will be taking part in an Iron Man UK event in Bolton this weekend, which involves a 2.4 mile swim, followed by a 112-mile bike ride before Humphreys will end with a full 26.2 mile marathon.

The 40-year-old is doing this all in aid of Alzheimer’s Society and Sheffield Children’s Hospital.

"I just didn’t think about the World Cup," Humphreys told hartlepoolunited.co.uk.

"I didn’t look at fixtures or even consider that it might clash. Regardless of who is in the World Cup Final it’s something you just always watch isn’t it? It’s like the FA Cup final or the Champions League final and those games you have to watch.

"I have to be honest, as the tournament has gone on this summer I have become more anxious about whether England are going to get to the final than I have been about me finishing the Iron Man.

"We all have World Cup memories. I slightly remember 1982 but it’s 1990 that I fully appreciate and obviously there are comparisons being drawn between the current squad and this one.

"It’s just so pleasing to see these players doing so well and the nation coming together behind them. Maybe we’re getting ahead of ourselves but I think you’re entitled to when you’re in the World Cup semi-finals."