Cambridge striker in Hartlepool United’s sights for survival fight

Hartlepool United manager Ronnie Moore

Hartlepool United manager Ronnie Moore

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RONNIE Moore will today step up his search for a new striker with injured frontman Scott Fenwick facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

With only Marlon Harewood and Marvin Morgan as fit, recognised strikers, Moore is desperate to add numbers to his forward line.

He had already been trying to add another striker but Fenwick’s ankle injury has only accelerated the need for reinforcements.

Moore said that he’d thought he’d captured a signing on Friday ahead of the 1-0 defeat to Bury, understood to be Cambridge United striker Ryan Bird, 27.

But the deal collapsed at the 11th hour, a deal he hopes can be resurrected this week ahead of the visit of AFC Wimbledon to Victoria Park on Saturday.

“I nearly had one in Friday which was so, so close,” revealed Moore.

“The plug was pulled late on, his club couldn’t get one in who they wanted and then stopped him moving to us.

“I’m hoping it will happen this week, a goalscorer.

“Who is going to give you a one in two striker? I’ve knocked on about 5,000 doors and got nothing.

“But this lad we are after has scored a lot of goals in non-league and is playing at our level now and hopefully we can get him in.

“Fingers crossed it’s done this week.

“We are hopeful and if he comes in then it helps.”

Away to Bury, Moore opted to partner 18-year-old forward Connor Smith up front alongside on-loan Plymouth Argyle striker Morgan.

With Moore keen to get some pace into the forward line, Harewood was left on the bench after being hauled off at half-time in the defeat to Stevenage.

Moore was impressed with Smith’s workrate on his full debut for the club and didn’t feel there was much to separate the two sides at Gigg Lane.

A 75th minute winner from Andrew Tutte proved enough.

“It’s hard and tight margins proved the difference,” he reflected.

“They are going to have pressure as the home team and see plenty of the ball but there was nothing between the teams, first-half especially.

“They had to change their system as we were that much on top.

“We had the first chance of the game – and the best one – and in tight games like this one, you have to take them.”