Injury update: Pools’ winger set to return, but defender touch and go

Ryan Donaldson.
Ryan Donaldson.

Hartlepool United are today set to be boosted by the return of winger Ryan Donaldson.

But defender Liam Donnelly is only rated as touch and go for the Victoria Park visit of Guiseley, having come back from international duty with a knock.

Summer signing Donaldson was one of the first names on the teamsheet for former boss Craig Harrison. The wideman was an almost ever-present in the early days of the season, making 14 appearances in the first three months of 2017/18.

But he has not kicked a ball since October 3.

And since that date he has had to go under the knife twice to rectify an ankle issues.

Having almost made the weekend trip to Maidstone United, and with two further days training with Pools’ youth team, Donaldson is, according to manager Matthew Bates, in line to be in the squad this afternoon (kick-off 3pm).

Although, the caretaker says he has just 20 or 30 minutes in his legs at present.

Pools will also give Donnelly every chance of involvement, with their squad down to the bare bones.

He suffered an ankle and calf problem while away with Northern Ireland under-21s earlier last week, and sat out the Gallagher Stadium win on Friday.

On his injury concerns, Bates said: “Our squad size is worrying.

“We need to be lucky in terms of injuries. We need to get people back.”