Cosgrove to sign?

Last updated : 31 July 2017 By Paddock Pundit

Carlisle United are getting closer to a decision on big striker trialist Sam Cosgrove.

The former Wigan man has featured throughout pre-season for the Cumbrians.

And with the new campaign just four days away, manager Keith Curle and his staff are weighing up whether to offer the 20-year-old a deal.

Cosgrove's latest involvement in United's friendlies saw him set up Shaun Miller's goal in last Friday's 3-1 win against Blackburn.

He is the only player to have still been kept on from the host of hopefuls Curle has assessed at various points in the build-up to 2017/18.

United have still not formally confirmed Cosgrove's identity but it is an open secret that the former Barrow loanee is the player they have been assessing.

Curle's assistant Lee Dykes admitted the frontman - who scored in an earlier friendly against Penrith - had impressed so far.

Dykes said: "[The trialist] played up top for the last 15-20 minutes against Blackburn and we felt he did very well.

"We will continue to have him in the building. We feel he has done very well. He has been with us for some time now. 

"He understands the situation. We are in consistent discussion with him so that we are not leading him down a foreign path.

"We like him. I’m not going to lie – he is someone who has impressed us and that is why he is still with us.

"It might be something we look at in more detail this week."

Dykes admitted there were other priority areas, having revealed United are in talks with clubs regarding two potential signings.

Any possible deal for Cosgrove could hinge on the outcome of those discussions.

"We will assess that this week," Dykes added. "We will speak to the board and Keith will make a decision."

United have three senior strikers on the permanent books after Richie Bennett's arrival from Barrow last week, to join Miller and Hallam Hope.

The Blues could also be looking to bolster their defensive ranks after Shaun Brisley's departure to Notts County.

Dykes said United would always be open-minded on trialists.

He added: "We never shut the door. We get them in for a reason. We don’t just invite players in willy-nilly.

"We have a look at them prior to them entering the building. Have they got the attributes that can complement the squad? If yes, then they get in the building.

"Sometimes, because this is a career for these players, you don’t want to stand in their way if they can go and get something else if we are not ready to move at that given point.

"I always say recruitment positions take priority at certain stages and, at this moment in time, with the trialists that have left us, those positions might not have been a priority at that point."