Hartlepool United legend Michael Nelson to be announced as Gateshead player-coach
Hartlepool United legend Michael Nelson is set to remain in full-time football with National League North side Gateshead as a player-coach.
The 39-year-old defender has been at the Heed since the start of pre-season and starred in several friendly matches as a ‘trialist’.
Nelson’s contract at previous side Chesterfield has prevented him from signing for his hometown club until August 1 (today). The Tynesiders initially finished 9th in the National League last season but a points deduction and subsequent relegation now sees them compete in the sixth tier for the first time in over a decade.
Nelson made over 300 appearances for Pools between 2003 and 2009, partnering Gateshead legend and former manager Ben Clark in defence for five of his six seasons at Victoria Park.
He started for the Hartlepool side who came agonisingly close to achieving promotion to the second tier for the first time in their history back in 2005.
United led 2-1 before conceding a late penalty in the League One play-off final against Sheffield Wednesday before going on to lose the game 4-2 after extra-time.
Two years later, the Tyneside native played a key role in the 2006-07 promotion season as he was named in the League Two team of the year.
Since leaving Pools in 2009, Nelson has featured for several clubs including Norwich City, Cambridge United, Barnet and most recently Chesterfield, where he spent last season as a player-coach at the National League side.
He will now join Gateshead player-manager Mike Williamson as both a defensive partner and coaching staff member at the International Stadium.