Why Tom White's loan from Blackburn Rovers expires before the end of Hartlepool United's National League season and what Dave Challinor could do to keep the midfielder
Tom White returned to action for Hartlepool United on Saturday afternoon.
Just hours after his loan extension from Blackburn Rovers was confirmed, the 23-year-old midfielder played the full 90-minutes in a goalless draw against Eastleigh at Victoria Park.
Despite his initial 28 day loan expiring on March 5, White opted to remain at Pools, travelling to away matches and continuing to train despite being ineligible to play until a new deal had been agreed.
But that new loan deal is now set to expire on May 15, which is before a potentially crucial match at current National League leaders Sutton United as well as a possible play-off campaign.
After initially agreeing a short term loan opposed to a half-season loan, Pools were left in a difficult situation once the initial 28 day loan had expired.
Loan rules stipulate that once there was a break in White’s short-term loan, Pools were only able to sign the player for cumulative total of 93 days either side of the break.
The remaining 65 days takes White’s loan up to May 15, when Pools travel to Aldershot Town.
It also helps justify the delay in extending White’s loan which saw him miss two matches for Pools before returning to the fold at the weekend.
On the deal, Hartlepool manager Dave Challinor told The Mail: "We’ve just got to make sure we’ve got all of our points before [May 15] won’t we!
"But he’ll miss the Sutton game and the back end of the season which will be disappointing.”
The only way White would be eligible to play for Hartlepool beyond May 15 this season would be if the club were able to agree a permanent deal with Blackburn before the player registration deadline on March 25.
"There is an option for us to do something regarding his situation and what Blackburn are doing between now and then,” Challinor added.
“But we’ve got less than two weeks to try and get something sorted and if that’s longer term then great but if not then he’s got to enjoy the next eight weeks playing football and hopefully keep playing the way he has been to help us get some results.”