Blackpool have no available strikers after Elliot Lee refused to extend his loan spell at Bloomfield Road.
Problems are mounting for manager Neil McDonald after Mark Cullen limped off with a hamstring injury soon after half-time in Saturday’s defeat at Burton, just hours after Lee returned to West Ham.
With Jack Redshaw and Martin Paterson injured, and Andy Little set to return to parent club Preston, Pool have no strikers for Saturday’s home clash with Port Vale.
It’s believed talks to extend striker Little’s loan period have taken place, with the Seasiders keen to keep the 24-year-old until the end of the month.
McDonald has been left livid with Lee, who had been given the green light by the Hammers to stay at Bloomfield Road until the end of the season.
But after picking up a hamstring strain last week, the 21-year-old turned down the chance to add to his four Pool appearances, in which he failed to score a first League goal.
It’s a kick in the teeth for McDonald, who had sung the striker’s praises.
As it stands, fellow loanees Will Aimson, Dean Lyness, Hayden White and Little have also returned to their parent clubs.
And although Pool have been in talks to keep all four, McDonald is desperately short of options.
He hopes Cullen’s injury isn’t as bad as feared. The Pool boss explained: “He’s had a little bit of a tight hamstring.
“We decided to try him for five or 10 minutes of the second half but he was no good. We decided to take him off, so he didn’t pull it.”