Macca's Mexican

MEXICAN central defender Carlos Lopez was set to play a trial game for Blackpool today.

Pool chief Steve McMahon was due to run the rule over the 30-year-old defender, who was down to play in this afternoon’s reserve team clash against Bury at Bloomfield Road.

The player is understood to have had a short spell at Spanish giants Athletic Bilbao, Pool’s recent friendly opponents, and is in the country for a short spell in the hope that he can get fixed up with a club.

And as McMahon’s team strengthening efforts hot up, Blackpool have confirmed that they are back in the hunt for cult hero Danny Shittu.

Assistant boss Mark Seagraves said McMahon has made a further inquiry with Charlton about the central defender and is expecting the London side’s boss Alan Curbishley to get back to him very shortly.

“Steve McMahon has spoken to him but the situation has not changed as yet,” said Seagraves.

McMahon confirmed at the end of last season that he had spoken to Curbishley and promised the fans he would make every effort to re-sign the man who became a favourite with the Bloomfield Road faithful during an extended loan spell last term.

However, sources at the Valley reported last month that Curbishley was planning to have a further look at Shittu during Charlton’s extensive pre-season programme of games and would then decide whether to release him again for an extended period.

With the new Premiership season due to kick off on Saturday, Charlton’s preparations are now almost complete and Pool are expecting a reply within the next few days.

McMahon’s quest for added strength in other departments is continuing, though Seagraves reported that nothing concrete had been sorted out at the time of going to press.

The opening Avon Insurance League fixture today was also expected to see loan man Martin Bullock given a full run out, after his brief substitute appearance on Saturday, and a competitive debut for young keeper James Pullen, who is on a month’s loan from Ipswich Town.

• A supporters’ coach will leave Bloomfield Road at 7am on Saturday for Pool’s clash with AFC Bourne-mouth at Dorchester Town’s Avenue Stadium. The cost is 15. Please book as early as possible.

• tickets for Tuesday’s Worthington Cup clash with Wigan Athletic and the league games against Wycombe on August 25 and Stoke on September 1 are on sale at the club. Paddock tickets only are available.