Former Pools boss Chris Turner leads tributes following death of ex Hartlepool United and Sheffield Wednesday coach Tony Toms

Former Hartlepool United coach Tony Toms has passed away at the age of 76.

Monday, 20th September 2021, 5:37 pm

The iconic fitness coach spent two years at Pools under manager Len Ashurst in the early 70s.

Toms, an ex Royal Marine, was known for his brutal and outlandish training routines. One pre-season session at Pools saw players spend the night on the Yorkshire Moors with just a chocolate bar and a sheet of polythene in the pitch black as Toms crept up and scared the players.

The squad were made to compete for an extra ration of food with the loser being thrown in a nearby river. The following morning, the players were told to find their way home without any money or means of transport.

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Victoria Park, Hartlepool (Photo by Paul Thomas/Getty Images)

He would go on to implement a similar approach when he followed Ashurst to Sheffield Wednesday. And he certainly left an impression on a young former Hartlepool manager Chris Turner.

The ex Wednesday goalkeeper and Pools boss was quick to pay tribute to his former coach following the sad news of his passing.

“Sad to hear of the loss of Tony Toms, players who knew always thought of him as a legend,” he tweeted.

“He brought a very serious training regime to the club, always available for a chat and always there if you needed to train longer. Will always thank him for my career that’s for sure.”

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Rarely has a non-player or manager left such a lasting impression at the clubs he’s been at. Our thoughts are with Tony’s family and friends at this difficult time.

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