Graeme Lee remaining patient over Stoke City defender ahead of possible return to Hartlepool United

Graeme Lee is hoping to learn more about the future of defender Eddy Jones over the coming week as Stoke City continue to monitor the Welshman.

Jones returned to the Potters last week after a strong showing for Hartlepool United in their win over Bolton Wanderers in the Papa John’s Trophy third round.

Jones was forced to play in the unfamiliar role of right back against the Trotters owing to injuries to senior first team members Jamie Sterry, Reagan Ogle and Luke Hendrie all of whom missed the matchday squad.

But the 20-year-old gave a good account of himself and demonstrated his worth to Lee’s side by helping seal a clean sheet as Pools progressed into the quarter finals of the competition where they will host League One side Charlton Athletic.

Graeme Lee would still like to see the return of Stoke City defender Eddy Jones at Hartlepool United. (Credit: Will Matthews | MI News)

Speaking after the win over Bolton, Lee suggested Pools would like to keep the youngster for the remainder of the season.

“We want to keep him on for what he offers.

“I’ve said it before, with Eddy it’s one of them where he could get in the team and stay in the team. He showed what he can do and that’s on the right hand side,” said Lee.

Jones missed out on the Pools squad for Saturday’s FA Cup success over Championship side Blackpool having returned to his parent club.

Fortunately for Pools both Sterry and Ogle were passed fit to be involved but Lee has admitted he is still keen to learn the stance of Stoke over Jones and whether or not the Welshman can return to the Suit Direct Stadium.

“I’ve had chats with Eddy. It's progressing,” Lee told The Mail.

“It’s such a hard one at the moment with COVID and first team numbers changing all the time, so they’re assessing and having a look at Eddy and keeping him in while their numbers are low then they’ll make a call next week regarding if they want to keep him in the building with them or if he’s back available.”

Pools are set to complete their first signing of the January window this week with Southport striker Marcus Carver believed to be close to agreeing a deal at the Suit Direct Stadium.

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