Hartlepool fans consider taking over club

Hartlepool United's Northern Gas and Power Stadium.
Hartlepool United's Northern Gas and Power Stadium.

A Pools supporters organisation says fan ownership may be in the best interests of the club.

Hartlepool United Supporters Trust (HUST) has held initial talks with new club chief executive and chairwoman Pam Duxbury to explore the possibility after Gary Coxall stood down as chairman.

Pools chairman Gary Coxall

Pools chairman Gary Coxall

John McQue, a founding member of the supporters trust, said fan ownership of the club may be the best option in the absence of a rich owner.

But he stressed it is very early days and the trust requires information and answers to questions regarding the club’s finances first.

John said: “From our perspective we have had an initial meeting but we need to follow the process now. The next stage will be to meet formally with the club.”

He added: “In the absence of a sugar daddy the best way forward for a football club is to be fan-owned because they have 100% the interests of the club at heart.

“The one thing you can be absolutely certain of with a fan-owned club is the club comes first, and no-one has got any other interest other than for the good of the club and the team.”

In stepping down just days before Pools’ biggest game in history when they hope to pull off a miracle to avoid relegation from the league, Coxall signalled his desire for the club to be fan-owned.

An open meeting of Hartlepool United Supporters Trust is due to take place on Thursday, May 25, at a venue to be decided.

John said the trust will not be rushing into anything adding: “It’s important to take a step back. Due diligence will give us all the answers we need.

“Once we have all the information we can come up with a coherent plan and will keep everyone informed as much as we possibly can.”

The trust was formed two years ago to help safeguard the future of the club by improving communications between the club and supporters and strengthen the influence of fans.

Membership has grown significantly in recent weeks after Pools have fallen to second bottom leading to the sacking of Dave Jones as manager after just 17 games.

Ticket sales for Saturday’s must-win game against Doncaster Rovers passed 5,000 yesterday.

Pools has reduced prices to just £5 in an effort to pack out the ground.

The ticket office has extended opening hours from 9am-6pm on Thursday and 9am-5.30pm on Friday. Tickets won’t be sold on the day.