We Wanted To Keep Kioso – Challinor

Peter Kioso and Dave Challinor, Hartlepool United

Dave Challinor has wished Peter Kioso well after he sealed a move to Championship outfit Luton Town – and revealed that Pools did everything in their power to keep him at Victoria Park.

The 20-year-old completed a switch to Kenilworth Road on Wednesday morning after the two clubs agreed an undisclosed fee for the defender, who was out of contract at The Vic in the summer.

Challinor has admitted it was difficult for Pools to stand in the way of Kioso once interest came from the higher divisions and the priority moved to getting the best deal for the Club.

“It’s obviously a really tough one for us because we didn’t want to lose Peter, by any stretch of the imagination because he’s been great,” Challinor told us.

“There has been lots of interest and speculation around him but the Club wanted to keep him and had entered in to discussions with his agent and Peter himself.

“However, he wanted to see what was out there for him and then you have a decision to make when an offer comes in for a player who has three or four months left on his contract.

“The decision for us is dependent on lots of different factors – if we had been sat at the top of the table I expect we would have waited and if you lose him for nothing then you lose him for nothing.

“With him being under 24 we would be leaving it open to a tribunal to decide his value and assess what the Club have put in to him over the last couple of years.

“I think the deal we’ve received is well above what we could potentially have got from that sort of tribunal so it almost becomes a no-brainer.

 “The way things are, we’ve reluctantly accepted the bid and for him to get a move to a Championship club is a massive opportunity for him – and one that he thoroughly deserves.

“Hopefully he can kick-on and show he can hold his own at that level.”

Challinor has also revealed that there was a flurry of activity surrounding the young defender in the build-up to Saturday’s trip to Yeovil Town.

Despite the interest, Kioso starred in the 2-2 draw at Huish Park and scored one of the goals as Pools brought home a well-deserved point from Somerset.

“There were bids put in for him before last weekend and at one point we thought we might not have had had him for the game at Yeovil,” Challinor confirmed.

“For him to have that in the back of his mind and then still produce the performance that he did is a testament to him, and it says a lot about him and what he thinks of this Club.

“That will stand him in good stead as he moves forward because it shows he’s got his head screwed on because there was no thought of him not playing on Saturday and potentially scuppering a move.

“He leaves with everyone’s best wishes for the future.”