Neale Cooper desperate to “freshen up” his “stale” Hartlepool United side
NEALE Cooper has today admitted he is desperate to “freshen up” his “stale” Hartlepool United squad.
The Scot watched in frustration at the weekend as his side surrendered a lead to lose 2-1 to relegation-threatened Chesterfield, extending their winless streak at Victoria Park to six matches.
Cooper has warned his players that he is still learning about their character, and he was not best pleased with their response to falling behind on Saturday.
And he told SportMail today: “When you go behind the pressure is on.
“You’ve got to have the mentality and bottle to deal with that.
“We had people looking for the ball when we were up and in front, but not when we were behind – you see a different side to players and I’m still learning about them.
“It all got a bit panicky towards the end and it was frustrating because we’d done so well for an hour.
“It makes it a long week now until Tranmere on Saturday.
“But this team needs four or five players to freshen things up – it’s a bit stale at times.
“Hopefully come the summer I can do that.”
Cooper admits that options are limited at present and he has used the same core of around a dozen starters for the bulk of matches since returning to the club in December.
There will be several squad members out of contract come June, and the boss is ready to show some of them the exit door.
“This is the time of year when players are being told that they are being released from other clubs,” he said when asked if summer recruitment plans were already in motion.
“For me, there are ones here who aren’t doing much for the club.
“I think you need to have freshness and competition.
“You need boys to know if they aren’t performing then there is someone waiting in the wings. There’s not a lot of options for me is there?”
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Weather for Peterlee
Sunday 19 May 2013
Temperature: 8 C to 12 C
Wind Speed: 10 mph
Wind direction: North
Temperature: 8 C to 13 C
Wind Speed: 15 mph
Wind direction: North