HARTLEPOOL United manager Paul Murray is aiming to get the best out of Jack Compton when the winger returns from a knee injury a month ahead of schedule.
The 26-year-old underwent surgery on his knee and was expected to be out of action until January.
But he has made good progress in his rehabilitation and Murray expects to have him back in his matchday squad early next month.
Compton has struggled for consistency since arriving at Victoria Park last summe, when former boss Colin Cooper made him his first signing.
But Murray is confident he can get the pacy former Bradford and Falkirk wingman firing on all cylinders.
“Jack Compton is making good progress,” Murray said.
“I’m hoping to have him back early December.
“He will be a good player to come back and hopefully I can get the best out of him.”
Compton has been missing from the first team picture since hobbling off just before half-time in the League Two match with Portsmouth at Victoria Park in September.
Scans on his injured knee showed a tear to the lateral meniscus and he needed surgery to repair the problem, which was originally expected to keep him out until the New Year.
In a further boost, Tommy Miller (calf) could be back for the trip to Southend United next Saturday, while Matthew Bates is back in training after a calf injury.
But defender Stuart Parnaby remains out with a knee-injury following surgery.
One player no longer part of the squad is Hartlepool-born winger Ryan Brobbel, who returned to his parent club Middlesbrough after the Newport County draw.
Murray has thanked him for his services during his three-month loan spell at Pools.
The former midfielder said: “Other people have brought the loan players in and I have to decide what is best for the club.
“With Sidney (Schmeltz), young Connor Smith and Jon Franks, I feel I have players here who can fulfil that wide role.
“I thank Ryan for his services, which I did after the match against Newport.
“That’s football,” said Murray speaking ahead of today’s FA Cup first round match at home to East Thurrock United,
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