Coops has right idea for Monks

Andy Monkhouse. Picture by FRANK REID
Andy Monkhouse. Picture by FRANK REID

NEALE Cooper admits he has a job on his hands convincing Andy Monkhouse that a change of position will bring out the best in him.

The 31-year-old believes his natural habitat is on the left-hand side of midfield, but his boss thinks otherwise.

And, tonight at Notts County, Monkhouse will again line up on the opposite flank, just as he did during his man-of-the-match display against Swindon Town on Saturday.

On that occasion the Yorkshireman was at the heart of everything good about Pools as they sought a first goal of the new season.

However, the home opener was to end goalless, although Cooper saw enough in the performance of Monkhouse to give him encouragement for the campaign going forward.

“Andy was excellent at the weekend,” said the Pools boss.

“I said to him it would suit his game and he wasn’t convinced.

“But that was the best I’ve seen him play for a while and it gives us something to think about.”

Monkhouse’s best work against The Robins came when he drifted infield, and that is something Cooper will again encourage him to do this evening.

“Andy’s got good feet and likes to cut inside, he admits himself that he’s not a jinky winger,” said the Scot.

“He works really hard and coming in across the park gives him the whole game ahead of him.

“From there he’s able to play neat passes into feet for the runners, rather than being trapped on the touchline.

“Also, right-backs defend better on their right side, but if the winger is coming across onto your left it’s different - you can go either way and that suits Monks.

“Monks won’t go outside down the line, you get bogged down at times.

“When he cuts in he seems to make better passes and get across the pitch better in general.

“That was one of the many positives from Saturday.”