New Hartlepool signing Carl Magnay learned from the best in Chelsea days including Jose Mourinho and Phil Scolari

New Hartlepool United signing Carl Magnay with Pools boss Ronnie Moore. Picture supplied by Hartlepool United.

New Hartlepool United signing Carl Magnay with Pools boss Ronnie Moore. Picture supplied by Hartlepool United.

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NEW Hartlepool United defender Carl Magnay has worked under the best including Jose Mourinho, Phil Scolari and Brendan Rodgers.

And the former Leeds United and Chelsea youth admits he cannot wait to start his Pools career working under Ronnie Moore - another “great character”.

Ronnie Moore being manager here was a big factor

Carl Magnay

The 26-year-old centre-back signed on a free transfer at Victoria Park after turning down the offer of a new contract at Conference side Grimsby Town.

He is Moore’s third summer signing, after striker’s Rakish Bingham and Rhys Oates, and comes highly-rated having swept the board at The Mariners’ player of the year awards do.

Magnay was one of their key players last season as Grimsby finished third before being beaten on penalties by Bristol Rovers in the play-off final but has left to come back to the North East.

“Ronnie Moore being manager was a big factor,” Magnay told SportMail.

“I was supposed to meet him for about 30 minutes to sort things out but in the end I was there for an hour and 45 minutes!

“He is a great character but that aside you just have to look at his credentials as a manager.

“He knows the Football League inside out and he did an incredible job with Hartlepool last season and had he been there all season the club would have been comfortably in the top half of the table.

“I am looking forward to working under him and he seems the type of bloke that will get the best out of me.

“He let me know exactly how many signings he is bringing in and it sounds like he has had a lot of backing from the chairman [Ken Hodcroft] to allow him to put his own stamp on the squad.

“It fits perfectly with me and I cannot wait to get started,” added Magnay, who can play either full-back or central defence, with Moore keen to play a 3-5-2 formation.

Magnay has enjoyed a varied career.

Having been released from Leeds United’s Academy as a youngster, he found an unusual route back into professional football - earning a contract at Chelsea by winning the second series of Sky One show Football Icon in 2007.

Whilst on the books at Stamford Bridge he worked under Mourinho and Scolari but it was current Liverpool manager Rodgers who made the biggest impression.

“I think there was five first team managers in the five years I was there and I worked under Phil Scolari and Jose Mourinho,” he added.

“But I was in the reserves a lot so the biggest influence was Brendan Rodgers.

“He was my reserve team manager for two-and-a-half-years and brought me on tactically and technically to a level I didn’t know I had in me.

“I have played alongside and under some top names and look to rub that off on some of the boys at Hartlepool.”

While at Chelsea, Magnay also earned international recognition for Northern Ireland Under-21s in 2009.

A serious knee injury brought to an end his five years at Chelsea but he made a swift recovery and signed for Gateshead in January 2012.

Gateshead-born Magnay, Grimsby’s Supporters’ Player of the Year, spent two-and-a-half years with his hometown club before leaving to sign a one-year deal with Grimsby last summer.