Franks hails new Hartlepool United management team

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HARTLEPOOL United have the perfect team off the park to bring the best out of the side on the field.

Attacking talent Jonathan Franks believes the managerial pairing of Colin Cooper and Craig Hignett are the ideal combination.

Cooper and Hignett took training for the first time yesterday as Pools returned to training ahead of their League Two preparations,

Franks has already worked under his new boss during his time at Middlesbrough.

Cooper was the assistant boss to Gareth Southgate when Franks made his Boro debut, which included a Premier League appearance in 2009.

And the striker/winger believes Pools have made the right choice.

“It’s a perfect match,” said Franks.

“The Gaffer was a very good defender.

“He’ll look to give us a solid base and you’ve got Higgy, who’s as daft as a brush!

“No, seriously, Higgy was a good advanced player so he’ll be looking to get our attack going.”

Cooper has an excellent reputation in the game, forged by a series of long and loyal service to his three clubs, Middlesbrough, Millwall and Nottingham Forest.

A consummate pro, he has carried that great professional approach into coaching, working with the senior and U18 squads at Rockliffe.

And Franks has seen enough evidence to show that Pools will play good football while being tight at the back.

“The gaffer wants to play good football and, naturally, as a good defender himself we’ll be nice and solid at the back I imagine,” said the 23-year-old who looks like being a key attacking component for Pools this season.

The Stockton-born player, like many of his team-mates, had some promising moments last season, but overall the League One programme was nothing short of disastrous for a club who had established themselves as a fixture in the third tier of English football.

“We were very upset about last year, especially the first half of the season, which was very disappointing,” he said.

“It’s important we do well for the club and the fans but we owe it to ourselves.

“We picked up in the second half but it was too late.”