Barkhuizen and Dugdale set to miss Hartlepool opener

Tom Barkhuizen. Picture: Matt Rushton
Tom Barkhuizen. Picture: Matt Rushton
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Morecambe are set to be without new signings Tom Barkhuizen and Adam Dugdale for their League 2 opener at Hartlepool on Saturday.

Barkhuizen is struggling with a tight thigh while Dugdale is yet to recover from an ankle injury that has seen him miss the majority of pre-season.

Boss Jim Bentley is confident both will be back sooner rather than later however.

He said: “Tom Barkhuizen and Adam Dugdale are both struggling.

“They both tried to join back in training but Barkhuizen’s got a slight thigh problem and Duggy’s ankle is just not 100 per cent at the minute.

“We’ve got to manage them. I don’t want to push them too much and have them break down and then they’ll be out for even longer.

“They’re nothing major, a couple of days I would imagine, the weekend might just come too early for them.”

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Two new faces who look set to be in the squad at Victoria Park however are strikers Shaun Miller and Jack Ryan.

The pair’s arrival on Wednesday ended Bentley’s hunt for front men as he looked to replace Jack Redshaw after his move to Blackpool.

The Shrimps boss said: “It’s been difficult since Jack went to replace him but Shaun Miller’s come in and done well in training and looked quite sharp in the games.

“I think he’ll only better, he’s got good pedigree but has lost his way over the last couple of years for one year or another.

“We’ve seen real good signs with him and he’s fitted into the group. I’m sure we can get him up to speed and then we’ll have a good player on our hands.

“Jack Ryan we’ve watched in pre-season and he’s done well.

“He had experience at Stockport last season and he’s a little bit different to what we’ve got up front.

“It’s a good opportunity for him.”

Bentley believes the duo, along with his other summer signings, give him real balance and options, meaning he has something of a selection headache ahead of the Pools clash.

He said: “I think there’s a better balance about the group now.

“We’ve got a couple of players into the wide areas and a couple of strikers.

“We’ve got a little bit better blend in the middle of the park too with regards to defensive and offensive players.

“It’s looking better all over the park which is pleasing.”

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