Hartlepool United’s Cooper urges on-song Pools to deliver at home

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BEAMING Hartlepool United manager Colin Cooper has called on his players to repeat his side’s “outstanding” away form at Victoria Park to give the home supporters something to cheer about.

Pools were rampant in Saturday’s 3-0 League Two victory at Exeter City – their third win on the road in the space of a week on the back of victories over Mansfield Town (league) and Sheffield United in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy and saw Pools climb to 16th place with 12 points from 11 games.

A first-half header from defender Jack Baldwin, followed by an exquisite Luke James lob and a clinical, low drive from Jack Compton secured the points at Exeter.

Cooper believes his players are giving him and his coaching staff everything in terms of work ethic and commitment at the moment, but has called on them to put on a show for the home supporters – with Plymouth and AFC Wimbledon next up in a Victoria Park double header.

Cooper, who praised the 144 travelling fans who made the 680-mile round trip, said: “That was an outstanding away performance.

“Exeter started better than we did, but we got our noses in front and that knocked the stuffing out of them.

“We have gobbled everything up they have thrown at us.

“We scored three and had other good opportunities and this really rounds off what has been a really good week for us.

“I have to say, all credit to all the lads and the staff.

“Everybody is working really hard and at the moment there is a really nice feel.”

Cooper is adamant there is still room for improvement and has called on his players to show the home fans what the away followers have been enjoying in recent matches.

“Certainly, the away performances are very, very good,” added Cooper.

“We have to try and replicate something similar at home now.

“We haven’t cracked it yet. We have had a great week and nobody can take away what we have done.

“But if you think you have cracked it, you will get a smack up the backside.

“They deserve a couple of days’ rest for the work they have put in. But when we are back into the training ground, then hard work starts again building for the two home games, Plymouth and Wimbledon.”

EXETER: Krysiak, Butterfield (Moore-Taylor 22), Woodman, Bennett, Baldwin, Coles, Sercombe, Gow (O’Flynn 67), Davies, Doherty, Wheeler (Keohane 45). Subs: Pym, Nichols, Tillson, Grimes. Booked: Doherty

HARTLEPOOL: Flinders, Austin, Dolan, Burgess, Baldwin, Walton, Poole (Sweeney 86), Monkhouse, Compton (Richards 80), Duckworth, James (Franks 75). Subs: Rafferty, Holden, Rodney, Walker. Goals: Baldwin 21, James 50, Compton 62.

Att: 3,615. Ref: Andy Davies (Hampshire)