Middlesbrough’s Matty Dolan was my No.1 transfer target says Colin Cooper

SCOUTING MISSION ... Colin Cooper.
SCOUTING MISSION ... Colin Cooper.

COLIN Cooper has revealed that Matty Dolan was his No.1 transfer target this summer.

The Middlesbrough midfielder looks set to debut for his hometown club when Fleetwood Town come to Victoria Park tomorrow afternoon.

Dolan’s signature on a month-long loan deal brings to an end a protracted pursuit of the 20-year-old.

And Cooper reflected: “Matty was the No.1 on my target list.

“When I got the opportunity to move here the two players on my list very early on were Matty and Christian Burgess.

“I’m chuffed to bits they’re both here now.

“Not only is Matty a good footballer, he’s a great lad with a great attitude.

“He’s got that loan experience already and has played at Wembley with Yeovil.

“So I’ve told him just to be himself and people will have to come with him.

“I have no doubt he’ll do that and he can bring others up to his standard.”

Dolan’s arrival, however, presents Cooper with a selection dilemma in the middle of the park.

With teenage star Brad Walker having made that position his own and Simon Walton also impressing in recent weeks, the Pools chief admits he has permutations to consider.

“The emergence of Brad has been fantastic and Simon has done very well in his role in the past couple of weeks,” Cooper said.

“So do we play two or three midfield players in there?

“Between Brad, Simon and Matty, who wants to be in there the most or do we play the three of them?

“It’s something to consider but it’s a nice problem to have.

“We need that competition and I think we’re getting there now.”

Should Cooper start with all three against Fleetwood then one of James Poole or Steve Howard is likely to make way in attack.

Poole could be accommodated on the right-hand side of midfield or it may well be Walton who reverts to the bench.

New signing Michael Duckworth is set to be named among the substitutes while skipper Antony Sweeney (calf) is the only absentee.

POOLS (probable): Flinders; Austin, Burgess, Baldwin, Holden; Poole, Dolan, Walker, Walton, Compton; Howard. Subs: Rafferty, Franks, Rodney, Monkhouse, Collins, Duckworth, James