Craig Harrison can’t wait to have a fully fit Hartlepool United squad

Hartlepool United manager Craig Harrison.
Hartlepool United manager Craig Harrison.
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Craig Harrison is not getting ahead of himself – but he is looking forward to the day he has a full squad to choose from.

The manager has had to contend with injury disruptions from as early as pre-season and physio Phil Bulmer’s treatment room has remained busy ever since.

Defender Keith Watson (knee) has been absent since mid-September while attacker Ryan Donaldson (ankle) has been out for the last two months.

Midfielders Nicky Featherstone (fractured fibula) and Luke George (hamstring) are currently sidelined with Featherstone due back for the festive period, while skipper Carl Magnay has just returned to action following surgery to repair a hernia and forward James Thorne resumed training this week after a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

“Keith, Mags, Ryan have all been out at the same time which is tough but you just have to get on with it,” said Harrison, who today took his team to Dover Athletic in the National League.

Ryan is still a little way away, end of December and start of January.

“I don’t think I’ve had an 85% [full] squad to pick from yet.

“It might sound terrible but it would be nice to have the chance to leave a few people out of the squad if I had everyone fit and firing.

“Every team is going to have injuries but from our perspective it’s been having to cope without three or four lads who would probably have played the majority of the games.”