Timi Odusina Joins Hartlepool United Following Norwich City Release
Odusina Already Knows Hartlepool United
Odusina is no stranger to Hartlepool United’s supporters, for he joined the club on loan in January. Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, his loan spell was not as long as originally expected, He had joined United until the end of the 2019/20 season, but he played less than ten games before the National League was abandoned.
This was a shame, as Hartlepool United’s manager Dave Challinor was particularly enthusiastic about the signing of Odusina. At the time, Challinor spoke to the Official Hartlepool United FC website.
“He’s a centre-back by trade though perhaps not the typical centre-back at this level in terms of size,” said Challinor.
“But he’s really athletic and very, very quick so he will allow us to defend high up the pitch and give us cover at the back.”
One reason behind Challinor’s enthusiasm was that the pair had worked together previously. In January 2019, Odusina signed for AFC Fylde, who were then managed by Challinor.
The 2019/20 season was the most successful in the history of AFC Fylde. They reached the National League Play-off Final but lost to Salford City. One week later, AFC Fylde won the FA Trophy. Odusina was in the matchday squad for both matches, which were played at Wembley.
Released by Norwich
Odusina returned to Norwich City for the 2019/20 season. He was a member of Norwich City’s Premier League 2 side, although injury hampered his playing time. Soon after his recovery, he joined Hartlepool United.
Odusina, prior to joining AFC Fylde, seemed on the brink of the Norwich City first team. In November 2018, he was an unused substitute in City’s 4-0 victory at Sheffield Wednesday. His future at Norwich seemed bright, especially as he was also the captain of their Premier League 2 side.
It was perhaps, for this reason, that it comes as a surprise that he has left Norwich. Odusina’s contract with Norwich expired at the end of the 2019/20 season. He had been at Norwich since the age of 14, when he made the switch from Arsenal.
Still just 20-years-old, it would be wrong to assume that Odusina’s dream of playing professional football is over. Many players – most notably Jamie Vardy – have moved into the non-league before heading back into the Football League. Quite possibly, this could be with Hartlepool, as they seem destined to challenge for promotion next season under Challinor’s leadership.
Either way, Odusina could still prove a name to watch out for in the near future.