Colin Cooper: New Hartlepool United boss admits to 'big task'

Colin Cooper

New Hartlepool United boss Colin Cooper says he faces a "big task" after taking over at the relegated League One club.

The 46-year-old was confirmed as John Hughes's successor on Friday to become Pools' sixth manager in five years.

Pools finished second from bottom, 10 points from safety, and Cooper told BBC Tees: "I think this is a big task.

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"If anyone sits here and pretends that you haven't got a real tough job on your hands then I think they are living in a world that doesn't exist."

Cooper named former Middlesbrough team-mate Craig Hignett as his assistant and added: "We were given this opportunity because of the situation but we are both really buoyed and excited."

Former England and Nottingham Forest defender Cooper spent four years gaining coaching qualifications after retiring from playing and said this was the opportunity he had been waiting for.

"You have got to decide what kind of person you are," he said.

"As a player I always saw myself as a captain and a leader and coaching is something that feels natural to me."

Durham-born Cooper stated that getting a job in the north east has its advantages.

"You know the area, the people and the players keeping an eye on north-east football, plus I am from the area so I have to make it successful and I don't want to let anyone down," he added.