‘Young, hungry and a winning mentality’... Hartlepool United fans’ views on new boss Craig Harrison

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Hartlepool United fans have welcomed the appointment of Craig Harrison as the club’s new manager.

Supporters say they are pleased Pools have signed someone with a history of success and hope it will help the club to win promotion back to the Football League.

Hartlepool United fan Phil Dunn

Hartlepool United fan Phil Dunn

Harrison joins Pools from Welsh Premier League side The New Saints who have won the league six times since he has been in charge plus four Welsh Cups and two Welsh League Cups.

Phil Dunn, of Hartlepool United Supporters Trust, said: “I’m very pleased. It’s a good appointment, he’s young, hungry and has got a winning mentality.

“He holds all sorts of records for winning games so he must have that winning mentality in him.

“Also he is a local lad coming from Gateshead and has obviously got connections with Middlesbrough Football Club which does come in handy from our point of view.

Hartlepool United supporter Pauline McSweenie.

Hartlepool United supporter Pauline McSweenie.

“He is an exciting appointment.”

Pauline McSweenie, Secretary of Hartlepool United Supporters Association, is also confident Harrison will do well.

She said: “Obviously, he has got a winning mentality which is what we need.

“It is going to be a hard season and we are going to need someone who is dynamic enough to drive us forward, especially after the last one.”

Derrick Rowbotham

Derrick Rowbotham

Pauline said the choice of Harrison came as a surprise as he was not a name of those on the potential shortlist.

But she added: “We tried an experienced manager last time and fell flat on our faces.

“He has got nothing to lose as long as he plays positive football, which with winning silverware it sounds as if he does.

“It is onwards and upwards now.”

Hartlepool United fan Tony Leighton

Hartlepool United fan Tony Leighton

Season ticket holder Derrick Rowbotham, who has been a Pools supporter for 60 years, and regularly takes his grandsons to games, said: “I was devastated when we went down and like most loyal supporters will be back again in the new season.

“I sincerely wish the new manager good luck, he’s got a great club and the best supporters he could wish for.”

Fan Tony Leighton, 52, of Owton Manor, who works for Healthwatch Hartlepool, said: “It remains to be seen if he is the right choice bearing in mind there was a lot of promises made by Dave Jones and he had Premier League experience, and he was just a complete failure.

“We have to give the guy a chance. He has got a lot of experience. We need a change, no doubt about it, so best of luck to him.”

Brian Smettem, 47, from the Oxford Road area said he had not heard of Harrison but added: “They need a new manager. His priority is to get a different squad.

“They also need more supporters to back them up.”