Seventeen games down, 29 to go.
Hartlepool United are more than a third of the way through their second season in the National League and it seems like a fair point of the campaign to assess the progress of their summer signings.
Some have had more of an impact than others and here our man Liam Kennedy grades each one of the 10 players out of 10.
He’s been that good he’s already got a song.
He’s ruthless in front of goal, can run in behind, play at 10 - he looks the complete striker.
The one criticism is that he has just five goals so far from his 17 games.
In my opinion, he answered any critics that wondered whether a two-division jump would be too much. He’s looked at home in the fifth tier. 8/10.
Has come in for some criticism from the Poolie faithful this season. I think it’s been unfair.
Kitching is a young lad, playing in a totally new position and to be fair to him, he’s done OK.
He maybe lacks the quality in the final third of other players - particularly Ryan Donaldson on the other side - but he definitely adds value to Matthew Bates’ side. His height is his main strength. 5/10.
The man with the armband - a leader both on the park and off it.
He’s a player that once went for £1million and it’s easy to see why, even if he’s no spring chicken at 34.
Has a two-year deal and wants to stay with his boyhood heroes even longer. If he remains injury free will be an asset for years to come. 8/10.
A no nonsense defender who does the simple things well.
The jury was out when he first arrived but he’s gone from strength-to-strength. Currently out the team, can think himself unlucky to be so. 7/10.
I’ve said it before and I will again, to look purely at his goals return would not be a fair evaluation of the forward’s season.
Works his socks off whatever role he is asked to fill.
The problem many see is his lack of goals - he’s scored just one and that was back in August.
A valuable cog in the Hartlepool wheel but would not be out of place asking for some better service. 6/10.
Pools’ talisman. When he plays well Pools win games. It’s as simple as that.
Seven goals in 17 games is an incredible return for a midfielder and no one would doubt he’ll not be a million miles off 20 come the end of the current campaign.
Can run a game when on his best form. Has had the odd dip of late but form is temporary. 8/10.
A midfielder who divides opinion.
I can see why Bates likes him so much. Classy on the ball, rarely gives it away but lacks a goal threat in the final third, which has led many to believe Michael Woods should instead get the nod. A work in progress. 6/10.
A revelation. There’s no other way to describe him.
Another who has been that good Poolies have got the songbook out.
Looks raw, makes errors but has all the tools to be a top defender. Arguably the find of the summer. 9/10.
MARCUS DINANGA/LUKE WILLIAMS
One has been unlucky with injury, the other just hasn’t had anywhere near enough gametime to assess.
Time will tell with these two. N/A.