DIMI Konstantopoulos could be ready to make a permanent Hartlepool United return.

The goalkeeper has regularly trained with Pools this season as he remains without a club following his release from Middlesbrough at the end of last season.

He signed non-contract terms with Pools this week which enabled him to play in the club’s Durham Challenge Cup win at Victoria Park, his appearance coming 12 years after his last appearance for the club.

Konstantopoulos signed for Pools under Neale Cooper in 2003, made 117 appearances and became a real crowd favourite. He enjoyed similar adulation during his six-year 98-game stint with Boro.

A move to Dubai failed to materialise in September and Konstantopoulos held talks with Pools, under then boss Craig Hignett, to try and sign terms.

And current chief Dave Challinor said: “Dimi has been here since before I came to the club. There was talks of potentially doing something earlier. He’s signed non contract at the moment and we will sit down with him and his agent and see where we go.

“He’s a bit unsure where he is. He’s had offers to go abroad, to different places, but it’s never materialised so he’s here. He’s not been able to play, but Tuesday was a chance to play and he wanted to play.

“It was a quite quiet game for him, but made one great save.’

Challinor is looking at other goalkeeping options to bring some competition for Ben Killip, and he could add to his squad in other areas before tomorrow’s game at Woking. He added: “At the moment we have lots of keepers training, but they can’t play for us – either on loan at different clubs or can be cup-tied. We do need another keeper to push Ben and put pressure on Ben.

“Dimi is one of those options and we will talk over the next week or so and see where we end up.’’

Killip made a majestic triple save in last weekend’s FA Cup draw at Exeter and has been settled of late following an uneasy opening to his Pools career since moving from Braintree Town.

Challinor added: “Dimi being here is good for Ben. He is in good hands with Ross and Dimi, both experienced goalkeepers. There’s no pressure on Ben and in every other position we have options, someone looking over their shoulder.

“To have some competition, regardless of who it is, for Ben is important.

“It will challenge him and it’s about helping him too. Dimi has been around here a long time, before I came in and Ben bounces off him and learns from him.

“We need one who can play for us, rather than just play for us.

“The triple save Ben made at Exeter kept us in the game and modern-day goalkeepers tend to make saves like that.

“You sometimes get waylaid with looking at weaknesses of players and everyone has them at this level, and we work with Ben and work with him and improve him. He is very critical of himself and wants to improve – whatever we can do to help and if that’s having an experienced goalkeeper to put the squeeze on him then we will look do to that.’’