RONNIE Moore has welcomed the added “experience” that returning duo Matthew Bates and Stuart Parnaby will bring to the Hartlepool squad after long spells out injured.
The pair were both unused substitutes at Kenilworth Road, as Pools went down 3-0 to Luton Town, to leave them a point above the relegation trap door.
It means Pools are without a win in five matches but with just two games left of the campaign to go, Moore is pleased to be able to add the experienced pair to his squad.
It was initially thought 32-year-old Parnaby was out for the season after surgery on his patella tendon injury back in November, ruling him out for nine months.
But as revealed by SportMail last month, he was making good progress and made his return to the 18-man squad at the weekend.
It is unlikely he will start a game before the end of the season but Moore had considered throwing Bates straight back in following David Mirfin’s toe injury.
But with the 28-year-old only just returning to training after two months out with the thigh injury he sustained away at Portsmouth in February, he decided it was too soon.
Moore told SportMail: “It is good to have both Batesy and Parnaby back and their experience is important for us.
“But I wasn’t going to throw Parnaby on, the way we were defending, after his long spell out.
“That wouldn’t have been fair.
“They both give us another option though,” added Moore.
Parnaby, a former Middlesbrough and Birmingham City right-back, was signed by Colin Cooper in the summer along with former Boro defender Bates.
There was an appearance from the bench though for former Aston Villa youth Ebby Nelson-Addy against Luton, the winger given his debut 13 minutes from the end of the game, with Pools 3-0 down.
Moore said in an ideal world he would have handed the 22-year-old his first Pools appearance when they were leading.
Nelson-Addy has been pushing for a first-team chance after impressing in training and for the club’s second-string.
Moore added: “We wanted to put Ebby on when we were winning but it was still good for him to make his debut.
“He will be a good player for us but for me, he will be more for next season.
“Ebby will benefit from the short spell he had on the pitch though.”
l Hartlepool United’s Supporters’ Association are considering putting on an extra coach to the final away game of the season at Carlisle United on Saturday, May 2, if there is sufficient interest.
The Corner Flag will be open for bookings on Wednesday between 6.30pm and 7.30pm.
Seats are £13 each and must be paid for in full at the time of booking.
Coaches are leaving from the Mill House car park at 9.30am on the day of the game.