Tributes paid to former Pools star

A FORMER Hartlepool United goalkeeper yesterday lost his long fight with cancer.

Les Green, who played at Victoria Park between 1965 and 67, died at a hospital in Leicester on Tuesday. He was 68.

Green’s former team-mate John McGovern, who also played alongside the goalkeeper in their days at Derby County, told the Mail he had lost his “best pal”.

John said: “He was my best pal, and a great help to me from my first meeting with him at Hartlepool.

“We also shared some great days winning trophies under Brian Clough and Peter Taylor together at the Baseball Ground for Derby County.

“During our time at Hartlepool he was already a very experienced player, and he took me under his wing as a 16-year-old from the Central Estate, and guided me through.

“It was something that I will forever be grateful for.

“He was the first one to greet me when Clough and Taylor took me from Hartlepool to Derby, where he was the established goalkeeper.”

Green was brought to Pools by Clough in 1965, and moved on to Rochdale before linking up with his former boss at Derby.

After a successful period with The Rams, he moved to South Africa before his career came to a premature end when he suffered a broken leg.

After spells as a non-league manager, he also worked as a car salesman.

He had been ill for some time, and leaves wife Heidi.

A Hartlepool United spokesman said: “Everyone at the club was saddened to hear about the death of Les Green.

“He was a popular figure at the club in the 1960s and went on to enjoy a great career. Our thoughts are with his family at this sad time.”