Dolan deal strengthens Murray’s Hartlepool United survival mission

Matty Dolan in action for Pools last season
Matty Dolan in action for Pools last season
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HARTLEPOOL United boss Paul Murray has made his EIGHTH new signing, with the return of midfielder Matty Dolan on loan.

The 21-year-old has joined from League One Bradford City until the end of December and is expected to go straight into the team for the visit of Wycombe Wanderers tomorrow (KO 3pm).

Pools had been keeping tabs on Hartlepool-born Dolan for several weeks and their interest hotted up when Bantams boss Phil Parkinson made him available ahead of the emergency loan window closing at 5pm last night.

Murray was busy making phone calls at the training ground yesterday morning as he looked to further bolster his options.

He succeeded in bringing in Dolan who becomes the eighth player, either on loan or short-term contracts, that he has brought in since taking over at the end of October.

The four-week loan marks Dolan’s second spell at the club after he spent the first half of last season here under then boss Colin Cooper, scoring two goals in 25 appearances.

Murray has opted to bring him back to strengthen the central midfield area, with former Sunderland man Tommy Miller still missing with a calf injury that has kept him out for the past four weeks.

Murray said: “We already have a squad here, I’m just trying to add to it and get better quality in.”

Dolan is dangerous from set pieces and was a popular figure at The Vic last season until parent club Boro recalled him in January.

He was then shipped out on loan to the Bantams for the remainder of last season before signing for them permanently in the summer.

Dolan has made only nine appearances for Parkinson’s side this term and has struggled to break into their starting line-up in recent weeks.

But Dolan, who will wear number 15, won’t be allowed to play against Blyth Spartans in the second round of the FA Cup next Friday night.

He came on in the final few minutes of Bradford’s 2-1 win over Halifax Town in the first round and is therefore cup tied.

The revolving door at Pools has been busy with goalkeeper Jon Maxted, midfielders Nicky Featherstone and Sidney Schmeltz and striker Scott Fenwick all signing permanent deals.

Meanwhile Newcastle United striker Adam Campbell, Sheffield United forward Joe Ironside and Italian defender Matteo Lanzoni have all signed on loan.

Pools now have four loan players, the maximum that can be named in a match day squad is five, and they won’t be allowed to loan any more until the January transfer window.

The side is still short of cover at centre back but free agents remain an option to Murray in the coming weeks.