`

Raj Singh opens the door to Matthew Bates adding to his Hartlepool United squad

Hartlepool United owner Raj Singh admits he is open to the possibility of Matthew Bates adding to his squad.

Despite a positive start to the campaign, Pools have looked short of options in the final third.

They've scored just 16 goals in 14 National League games so far this season, despite summer signings Niko Muir and Liam Noble chipping in with 10 of them.

The last player to score who wasn't Noble, Muir or Nicky Featherstone was Michael Woods back on August 25. And just six players have hit the back of the net for Bates' men this season, with one of them - Jake Cassidy - having already left the club.

Bates has just loan man Marcus Dinanga to call upon in the absence of either Muir or James and it has led many to wonder whether a striker could be added by the manager in the coming weeks.

While Bates ruled out further signings last week, the owner admits he is not ruling out additions, if the manager and those around him at the club feel it necessary.

Raj Singh.

Raj Singh.

"Without committing ourselves to anything, we're always looking to support the management team in strengthening the squad," said Singh.

"So we'll keep on working hard behind the scenes to see what can be done in that regard."

Fatigue, experience and expectation - FIVE challenges facing Hartlepool United boss Matthew Bates
READ MORE: Liam Kennedy’s player ratings - Muir thrives and Loach ‘top class’ as Hartlepool drop home points
Give our dedicated Hartlepool United Facebook page a 'like' for all the latest Pools news straight to your timeline
Defeat against table-toppers Salford, whose big spending placed them as many people's pre-season promotion favourites, was disappointingly followed up with a home draw against an Aldershot side who'd not picked up an away point all season.

Singh believes it will still take time for the squad to truly bed down - although he has absolute faith in those with the shirts.

"I think we've seen already that it takes that little bit of time for things to be fine-tuned so we just have to have faith in them to get it spot on as time goes on and I'm sure they will," he said.