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Striker is back in the frame at Pools
A WEEK after being missing from training and handing in two transfer requests, Luke James is back in the Hartlepool United fold.
The striker was absent from last weekend’s first win of the season, a 2-1 triumph at Wimbledon, after not turning up for training on Thursday or Friday.
But he returned to the club’s Maiden Castle training ground on Tuesday when the players reconvened and he back was there yesterday.
Pools travel to Cheltenham tomorrow ahead of Saturday’s game and boss Colin Cooper said: “Luke is back in, he is training and, as far as I am concerned part of the squad going forward.
“I have addressed it by having the conversation that I wanted to have had with him and I have had two or three in the last few days, he’s back and, as far as I am concerned we just crack on.’’
It remains to be seen if James if Peterborough make a fresh move for the 19-year-old ahead of Monday’s transfer deadline, after having one bid rejected.
In James’ absence last week, boss Colin Cooper signed Charlie Wyke on loan from Middlesbrough and he scored on his debut.
“Charlie played well last week, he capped off a very good display with a goal. It was his second debut for the club, and to play like he did made the day better, especially having been on loan down there,’’ said Cooper.
Wyke’s goal got Pools level last week after failing behind early on. Marlon Harewood’s neat turn and finish put them ahead and Cooper said: “Once you get that first win, you want to build on it.
“We were only three weeks in and I was quite relaxed about it. I wasn’t; happy about losing, but stressed we weren’t far away.
“We got the rub of the green a bit last week and we have to make sure it’s not a one-off, we want to carry on feeling good about ourselves.
“Cheltenham have started well, they drew with Carlisle, but Graham Kavanagh was disappointed to leave with a draw. Last week Cheltenham had a good result at Tranmere, they have a system that works, experience and pace and we have to be difficult to beat and then cause them problems.
“Cheltenham got three quick goals at Tranmere last week, they come out and blitzed them and got some momentum.
“One team is comfortable at two-up, then they lost it and Cheltenham will be feeling good for it.’’