Wadsworth: Pools fans will be “pleasantly surprised” by new signings

Mick Wadsworth thanks the travelling supporters at the end of the game against Charlton Athletic. Picture by FRANK REID.
Mick Wadsworth thanks the travelling supporters at the end of the game against Charlton Athletic. Picture by FRANK REID.

MICK Wadsworth has reassured fans that they will be “pleasantly surprised” by the replacements he has lined up in the wake of this week’s mass exodus from the club.

Pools released no fewer than 10 players who had come to the end of their contracts on Wednesday.

The biggest casualties were Irish duo Joe Gamble and Leon McSweeney, who had made more than 90 first-team appearances between them this season.

But Wadsworth told SportMail that those decisions, in time, will be justified given the calibre of new signing he has in his sights.

The first-team coach said: “There are sound reasons for doing what we have done.

“We want a better balance to the squad because there was an imbalance this season.

“We have also said all along that we want a leaner squad and I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised by some of the players we’ve got lined up to come in.

“We’ve brought Nathan Luscombe in already, and I’m happy with that.

“I’m also very confident that a couple of things are going to happen in the next couple of days.

“We’re going through the process of tying a few things up now and we’re keen to put things to bed.”

Indeed, Wadsworth was in the crowd at Old Trafford last night to see Manchester United Reserves beaten 2-1 by Blackburn Rovers’ second string.

And SportMail understands that Pools are in advanced talks with Manchester City’s James Poole, the 21-year-old striker who enjoyed a two-month loan spell at Victoria Park earlier in the season.

They are also looking to recruit a midfielder from north of the border and hope to tie up those deals before next week.

Meanwhile, Wadsworth has revealed that the process of informing senior pros such as Gamble and McSweeney that they were to be let go wasn’t an easy one.

“It’s very tough and it’s not a pleasant thing to do,” he added.

“Both players (Gamble and McSweeney) made a big contribution in what was a fairly successful season.

“I wish them all the best and thank them for all that they have done for this club.

“They were very tough decisions to let them go, but if we want to change things we have to make these decisions.

“I have both sympathy and empathy with the players because I’ve been there myself.

“It’s tough on young players because you’re scuppering their aspirations - but we have to do what we think is right.

“But I have told them that I will help them in whatever way I can and that I will give them glowing references.”

Also told that their future lay away from Victoria Park were forwards Denis Behan, Armann Bjornsson and Michael Mackay, as well as Uruguayan midfielder Fabian Yantorno and young professionals Billy Blackford, Billy Greulich, Callum Martin and Dylan Purvis have also left.