HARTLEPOOL striker Charlie Wyke aims to break his professional scoring duck against Portsmouth this weekend – and hopes that will help win him an extended stay at Victoria Park, writes CRAIG HOPE.
The Middlesbrough loanee – who turned 20 earlier this month – is hoping to see out the season with League One strugglers Pools.
The forward has forced his way into John Hughes’s starting line-up in recent matches, during which time a one-month extension to his loan deal has been negotiated with Boro.
But Wyke wants to stay beyond January.
“I’m pleased it got sorted to stay here,” he said. “I really wanted to and it’s all good experience for me.
“The gaffer has been really good, hopefully I can play a lot more games for him.
“At my age, going out on loan is something you just have got to do.
“The longer I can extend the loan and stay here the better it is.
“In the long-term, I want to prove myself at Boro and this is all about gaining experience as a footballer.
“So if I can stay for the season and then go back to Boro a better player for it then I’ll be happy.”
Wyke has only ever netted at senior level in non-league football, during a loan spell at Kettering.
And, having come close in recent matches when deployed just off target-man Steve Howard, the Teesside-born starlet is targeting his first in the blue and white of Pools this weekend.
“I hope I’ve proved I can earn a place in starting XI,” he went on.
“I’m playing off the main striker at the minute and it’s a role I enjoy, dropping deep and getting a lot of the ball, more of it than if you are up there by yourself.
“The gaffer wanted me to play a certain way, it’s like we play at Middlesbrough.
“I’m still waiting for my first goal, although I came close at MK Dons on Saturday. Hopefully that will be this weekend because we could really do with a win right now.”