COLIN Cooper believes another bumper Victoria Park crowd could give Hartlepool United a major short and long-term boost.
The Pools boss is delighted the club have made admission £5 for their last game of the season against Exeter on Saturday.
It is the second home match in a row that the club have run the Pack the Park initiative with fans getting into any part of the Vic for a fiver.
When Pools did this for the Morecambe game on Easter Monday, a season-best attendance roared the side not only to a stunning comeback win but also helped the club clinch their Football League status.
Cooper hopes Pools can attract a similar crowd this Saturday and would love some of the “extra” fans to come to every game next season.
“After the Morecambe game, I hope some of the extra 1,200/ 1,300 we got that day come to give it another go,” he said.
“If they come and enjoy again what they see then it may boost our season ticket sales.
“If that happens that can only benefit me and the team – the lads would love to be playing in front of 5,000 every week.
“I have to say that the supporters have been fantastic they really have.
“They have bought in to what we have been trying to do this season.
l TURN to Page 55
“Results, obviously, dictate what sort of mood people go home in on a Saturday night.
“I remember at Spotland on the first day of the season having three fans come at me after we lost 3-0 to Rochdale, giving me grief, saying ‘this is the same old rubbish’.
“I said ‘give me and the players a chance’ and the fans have done that.
“I think they appreciate the way we have tried to play the game and have seen some good football and wins.
“The more the players give the fans the more the fans will give the players.
“It’s a cliche I know but the supporters really were a 12th man against Morecambe – there are no two ways about it.
“The fans gave the players that extra energy to push on to get that victory against the odds when we beat Morecambe.
“As the manager I am proud of my players, but I’m also proud to be manager of the club and proud of the way the fans have conducted themselves.
“And, like I say, if 5,000 Poolies want to come next season and support us I’ll be more than happy.
“I’ve said this from day one that I want to put out a team that people like watching and want to support and that’s what I intend to do next season.
“We are a young team and with young players you gets ups and downs.
“But those players not only have tremendous ability but they have an affinity to the club and the town and long may that continue.
“I hope those extra people will come to have another look at us on Saturday and keep coming.”