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HUNGER is the trait which can make winger Jake Thomson a successful loan signing at Forest Green.

So says Rovers manager Dave Hockaday, who introduced the 22-year-old as a 56th-minute substitute in Tuesday night's 1-1 draw with Newport County.

Thomson's one-month stint at the New Lawn from Kettering Town had only been ratified hours earlier, but he made an instant impact on the right flank.

Hockaday worked with the Trinidad and Tobago international (above) during his time in charge of the Southampton academy and remains excited by his potential.

"Jake is a good player and another one who has got lost in the system," said Hockaday.

"He is very quick, provides good delivery and has great feet, and I told him to come on and show me hunger.

"He certainly did that, causing them a lot of problems, so hopefully there's another good one added to our squad."

Thomson made ten appearances in the Championship for the Saints before moving on to Exeter City, from where he was briefly loaned to Cheltenham Town last season.

Rovers have slipped to 14th in the Blue Square Bet Premier after failing to see off strugglers Newport, although Hockaday was encouraged by his side's second-half showing.

Trailing to Nathaniel Jarvis' strike six minutes before the break, the hosts levelled through Exiles old boy Charlie Griffin and created several gilt-edged chances to bag all three points.

Hockaday said: "We didn't really take the game to Newport in the first half and gifted them an awful goal.

"I would like to see Charlie's offside goal (on 15 minutes) again because it was their man who flicked it on, so I think that's a good goal, but 0-0 would have been fair at half-time.

"Obviously strong words were said, which I don't like to do but that's what we did, and in the second half we had the crowd on their feet.

"We scored one and should have won the game, We ripped them to pieces and ran them ragged.

"There were loads of chances and balls in the box, and unless we were going to make another mistake I couldn't see them scoring.

"So I'm really happy with the way we came back from an awkward situation and the resolve that we showed in the second half, but we needed more of that in the first half."

Top scorer Reece Styche is due to see a knee specialist today after an MRI scan showed cartilage damage, a problem which has kept him out of three of Rovers' last four matches.