Kelly’s Eye on Hartlepool United: Time to get behind Colin Cooper

WHAT A DAY TO BE A POOLIE: Hartlepool United playersand fans  celebrate with Jack Barmby after his winner against Morecambe. Picture by FRANK REID
WHAT A DAY TO BE A POOLIE: Hartlepool United playersand fans celebrate with Jack Barmby after his winner against Morecambe. Picture by FRANK REID
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YOU can tell Colin Cooper has operated in higher circles.

After Monday’s dramatic win over Morecambe, BBC Tees maestro Ivan ‘Orrssssssstin’ Ash delivered what I thought was a pretty decent opening question/ statement of the Hartlepool United boss.

“The sort of afternoon that will live in the memory for a long time,” said the man with the mic.

“I’m not so sure about that Ivan,” replied the Pools boss, who clearly has played in too many Premier League and European games in his time.

Monday’s win WILL live long in the memory. That sensational comeback is up there with some of the great occasions ever seen at the Vic.

Kelly’s Eye has witnessed the FA Cup wins over Derby, Palace and Stoke over the last 30 years, the 4-1 mauling of Darlow in the promotion season and the penalty shoot-out win over Preston followed by Philly Dunn and his dad dancing in the pitch invasion.

To see Pools, with 10 men, come back from a goal down to seal their Football League status in that atmosphere was as good as any of them.

When this reporter covered Portsmouth v Pools a few Saturdays ago, the noise and non-stop backing from the Pompey fans was probably the best support I’ve ever seen.

But you Poolies did a Pompey. You truly did yourselves, the club and town proud on Monday. Incredible does not do it justice.

Even my two God sons, Jacob and Joshua, returned home singing “Poolie til I die”.

It was a day Poolies will never forget. But what now?

Kelly was going to write on Monday that ‘whatever happens today or whatever happens at the end of the season, Colin Cooper must be given the job of getting this club back up the football ladder’. I didn’t write it, but I do now.

At one time for a Pools manager to get the push he had to commit murder.

But Pools have had five bosses/ coaches/ directors of sport in the last five years.

The club needs to say ‘Colin, this is your job and this is what you can spend’,

Yes, Pools finished the season as they began it – dreadfully. But in the middle we witnessed some genuine hope of brighter times ahead and a lot of that is down to the boss, who has already proved that he is very adept at spotting talent.

It is time for continuity. It is Cooper time.