Joel Dixon is optimistic Hartlepool can bounce back from relegation after completing a permanent move to Victoria Park.

Dixon was a free agent following his release by Wanderers, ending a two-year stay in the North West.

The goalkeeper made 36 appearances for the Whites after joining from Barrow, where he was part of the squad that won the National League title under Ian Evatt.

He began the 2021/22 campaign as first-choice before falling behind Manchester City loanee James Trafford in the pecking order.

Dixon played seven times in all competitions this season, with his only league appearance coming in the 3-2 win at Bristol Rovers on the final day.

He also made four appearances in the early rounds of the Papa Johns Trophy, which Wanderers went on to win following a 4-0 victory against Plymouth at Wembley.

The 29-year-old returns to Hartlepool, where he had a short loan spell from Sunderland during the 2014/15 campaign.

John Askey’s side were relegated from the Football League this season, finishing 23rd in League Two after a difficult campaign.

“I am delighted to join Hartlepool,” Dixon told the club website. “I know how much of a great club this is from my previous spell and after speaking to the gaffer, I know we are going to be going in the right direction. I can’t wait to get started.”

Askey believes the goalkeeper is a good fit for the club and hopes his experience in the top tier of non-league football will pay off.

He added: “I’m very pleased to get Joel over the line, a previous National League winner with plenty of experience in both league two and league one. He knows the area and fits in well with what we are looking for.”

Hartlepool have also brought in young defender Kieran Burton following his departure from Scarborough.