Matthew Bates offers transfer update as Hartlepool United’s search for a striker goes on

Matthew Bates.
Matthew Bates.

Matthew Bates has hinted that he is yet to find a suitable player to add to his Hartlepool United ranks.

But the manager has reiterated the need to sign the right type of player, not just add for the sake of it.

Bates, along with owner Raj Singh, went on record a fortnight ago to claim Pools have time on their side when looking to sign a forward, and would not be rushed into a rash decision.

Three National League defeats on the bounce has not altered that thinking, according to Bates.

“We are looking. It (making a signing) is something we are working on,” said the manager, whose side travel to League One Gillingham on Saturday in the first round of the FA Cup.

“We can only sign players that are put to us. And to be honest, they still have to be the right type.

“It is about picking the right player but we do not panic.

“We move on (from recent defeats), don’t rush and get the right player in that’s right for the football club.”

The 4-0 loss to Bromley, on the back of losses to Sutton United and Wrexham, probably equates to the lowest ebb since the 31-year-old former defender took the reins at the Super 6 Stadium.

And while critics are quick to write the manager off, he’s determined to turn things around.

“I am not happy. The lads are not happy. But we have to put it right,” he said.

“Every single goal we have conceded over the last few weeks has been avoidable. We will work on it.

“I am not even looking at the table at the moment. All I can do as a manager is look at the problems we have and try to fix them.

“There is a long time left in this season. We will turn it around. This is only three games. Lets hope this can be the making of us, stick together and turn things around.”

An FA Cup clash could work one of two ways for Pools. It could act as a welcome release from the rigours of an unforgiving National League campaign - but it also has the power to pour the pressure on with another defeat.

“It is a big game, a big opportunity for us. We have to pick ourselves up,” said Bates.

“It was a very, very poor day last weekend but at the end of the day, despite conceding four poor goals, we only lost three points.

“Things did not change much for us in the league. It was three points, we have to move on.

“It is plain to see that we had a lot of possession but we didn’t create much at all in the final third.

“We know we are lacking in that area and have been for a long time. It is something we are working on.”

Bates will have to do without skipper Andrew Davies and Peter Kioso on Saturday, with both suspended.

He will, though, have Carl Magnay available despite him picking up five bookings.

One man’s misfortune is another’s opportunity.

“They are big losses,” said Bates.

“We have a squad, though. And players have to step up when we need them. That’s why you have a squad.

“They need to come in and prove a point why they deserve to be in the side.”