'He is still a couple of weeks away from full fitness': Carlisle boss on loan signing of Blackpool's Mark Cullen

Carlisle United manager Steven Pressley
Carlisle United manager Steven Pressley
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Carlisle United manager Steven Pressley has revealed Mark Cullen is still a "couple of weeks" away from full fitness after the Blackpool striker signed for the Cumbrians this afternoon.

READ MORE: Blackpool's Mark Cullen sent out on loan to League Two side

The 26-year-old, who has endured another injury-plagued campaign with the Seasiders, will spend the rest of the season on loan with the League Two promotion chasers.

The striker hasn't played since November 10 of last year when he scored in Blackpool's FA Cup win at Exeter City.

He then picked up an injury, which scans revealed to be a stress fracture on his leg.

Terry McPhillips confirmed following Saturday's win at Coventry that Cullen was due to return to training this morning.

But with the recent arrivals of Chris Long and Elias Sorensen, the club has decided the best option for Cullen is to go out on loan to get regular gametime.

"He turned down the opportunity to go to a League One club to come here and he’s very hungry to do well," former Fleetwood Town boss Pressley told the News and Star.

"That tells you he was very keen to join us, which is a great aspect because I want players who want to be here.

"He’s had promotion from this league and he’s a very hard working striker that possesses the type of character we’ve been looking to bring in.

"He’s a more natural number nine than we’ve been playing with, and he’s a little bit similar to Jerry Yates in many respects.

"They both work very hard for the team and have a goal threat. Although Mark is small, he’s got a strong physical presence.

"I think it’s a very good acquisition for us. He is still a couple of weeks away from full fitness, following his injury, but he's back in training now and working hard.

“He’s a player used to getting promotion and being at the top end of the table, so we hope he can bring that experience here.

"He gives us different options. We’ve been playing Dev [Jamie Devitt] as a false nine and he gives us another string to our bow."

Carlisle have been on the lookout for a striker since Ashley Nadesan returned to Fleetwood Town from his loan spell at Brunton Park.

The Cumbrians are pushing for promotion from League Two and currently sit fourth in the table, just two points off Bury in third.