NEW recruit Ryan Fraser is facing a delayed start to his career with Cherries after picking up an injury as the ink was still drying on his signing documents.
Teenager Fraser, who penned a three-and-a-half year deal with Cherries on Friday, pulled out of the warm-up ahead of the 3-1 defeat at Walsall on Saturday.
Although the 18-year-old had not been set to feature at the Banks’s Stadium due a hold up with his international clearance, he joined Eddie Howe’s squad on the pitch ahead of kick-off.
However, Fraser, who joined Cherries for an initial fee of £300,000 from Aberdeen, felt some discomfort to his gluteal muscle and could be sidelined for two to three weeks.
Boss Howe was keen to kept news of Fraser’s absence under wraps until after the Cherries team had been revealed for tonight’s clash at Hartlepool.
Josh McQuoid's 28th-minute header handed Cherries a deserved lead at Victoria Park, but Jack Baldwin nodded past keeper Shwan Jalal from close range to restore parity six minutes after the break.
Lewis Grabban's penalty just after the hour put Cherries back in front, though, after Eunan O'Kane had been scythed down inside the box, and the visitors held on to register their first win of 2013 and move back into the play-off places.
Howe, meanwhile, confirmed striker Wes Thomas had been left out of the squad due to a potential move away from Dean Court.
He said: "We will wait and see what happens with Wes. There is interest in him and I think he has a desire to go. If he doesn't then we will review the situation."
The Cherries boss also confirmed keeper David James had been dropped, adding: "David has done very well for us and been a big part of our unbeaten run. But we had to make a decision based more on distribution than goalkeeping. Shwan is an excellent footballer as well as an excellent goalkeeper so that is why we have come to the decision we have.
"I thought Shwan was excellent. His distribution was good and he made a couple of great saves in the first half. We didn’t have it all our own way. I was very pleased with him on his return to the side.
"David is still very much part of our squad and will be going forward. He took it like a man. He was disappointed. He is very much a team player and very much wants us to achieve our goal of promotion. There is certainly no animosity. He is a real gentleman. Sometimes you have to make difficult decisions but it has been done with the best intentions."