Pools get their new hot Rod

Hartlepool United have completed their second signing of the January transfer window '“ adding former Manchester City youth prospect Devante Rodney to their ranks.

Saturday, 7th January 2017, 4:30 am
Updated Monday, 9th January 2017, 11:53 am
New Pools signing: Devante Rodney. Picture courtesy of Hartlepool United

But the striker is not understood to be one of the main targets Craig Hignett has earmarked to help drive his Pools side towards the League Two play-off spots.

The 18-year-old striker has arrived on a permanent deal from Championship high-flyers Sheffield Wednesday, where he has played a big role in their Under-21 side in recent months.

Rodney has penned a permanent deal with Pools, and has been handed squad number 38 at the Northern Gas & Power Stadium.

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The frontman spent six years at the Etihad from the age of nine, before moving on to the Steel City as a teenager.

But Rodney, who is yet to make his senior bow, after injury curtailed his development somewhat at Hillsborough, is not believed to have been signed as a first-team striker.

Instead the new arrival will take his place in the club’s second string, previously managed by current assistant Sam Collins, with view to providing competition for senior stars Padraig Amond and Billy Paynter, who despite rumours to the contrary, is believed to still have a big part to play at the Vic.

Announcing the striker’s arrival, a club statement read: “A strong and pacey striker, Rodney has battled back from injury problems in the past but is now ready to make the step up to first-team football and sees a move to Pools at the perfect platform.”

Although fit, it remains to be seen whether Rodney will be involved in the matchday 18 for the League Two clash with Grimsby Town this afternoon.

Meanwhile, manager Craig Hignett has confirmed that he is again running the rule over a number of trialists at the club’s Maiden Castle training base.

“There’s players in all the time,” he said.

“We look at players regularly and have players in on trial. We have to look at them all.

“We will have to wait and see if any of them are good enough to earn a deal.”

Despite making noises to the contrary in recent months, Hignett is expecting that before the month is out Hartlepool may well have been a busy club.

“It will be a big month for us depending on who goes and who comes,” he said.

“We will have to wait and see who goes before we decide incomings.”

While fans will welcome any business to improve the club’s lot, Hignett has his eyes on smart deals, not just signing for the sake of it.

And he did just that with Sean Kavanagh, he believes.

“Toto (Nsiala) has gone and Sean is only a loan,” he said.

“I am sure he has a big future at Fulham but we will get the benefit of having him now.

“Bringing in players on loan is cheaper than signing permanent. We have got a lad in on loan who I think will improve us for less money.

“I think it is good business.”