Hartlepool United boss Paul Hartley gives key backroom staff update as former Hearts and Celtic midfielder reveals Antony Sweeney status

Paul Hartley has confirmed Antony Sweeney will remain with Hartlepool United and will form part of the first team backroom staff.

By Joe Ramage
Tuesday, 21st June 2022, 6:00 am

Sweeney remains a popular figure at the Suit Direct Stadium but there had been some uncertainty about his future following the sacking of Graeme Lee last month.

Sweeney formed part of Lee’s coaching staff alongside Michael Nelson and Dimitrios Konstantopoulos who have both now left the Suit Direct Stadium following Lee’s dismissal which had raised questions as to whether Sweeney would be next to follow them out of the exit door.

But new Pools boss Hartley revealed to The Mail that Sweeney will remain at the club and will continue to play a key role behind the scenes.

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Antony Sweeney remains part of new Hartlepool United boss Paul Hartley's plans. (Credit: James Holyoak | MI News)

“Yeah he’ll be staying,” Hartley told The Mail.

“He’ll be staying on as part of the first team staff and I think he’s involved in the academy as well. But he’ll be staying.

“We’ll be looking to bring a coach in and potentially a number two to work with and then we’ll look at maybe one or two other staff that we can bring in.

“It’s important that you have good staff at the football club and keep improving and keep getting better.”

Michael Nelson has left his role with Hartlepool United. (Credit: Michael Driver | MI News)

Sweeney, who was presented with the John Fotheringham Award for services to North East football at the Football Writers Association Awards ceremony at Durham’s Ramside Hall Hotel in March, recently signed a new deal with Pools keeping him at the club until 2024.

Sweeney spent time as interim manager last season while the search for Dave Challinor’s replacement took place and is expected to hold something of a crossover role when the club re-launches its academy set up this year by working both as part of the academy structure and with the first team.

And that looks set to continue despite Hartley’s arrival along with assistant Gordon Young.

Hartley has already brought in goalkeeper Kyle Letheren who will act as a player-goalkeeper coach, with the club also believed to be interested in appointing a video analyst as well as other key members of staff.

Chris Trotter remains an important figure in the head of recruitment role while the club are actively seeking the appointment of a new physiotherapist to work alongside Keith McGrath after the exit of Stephen Hayward last season.