RONNIE Moore has been entrusted with the task of keeping Hartlepool United in the Football League after being appointed the club’s third manager of the season.
The 61-year-old had been the odds-on favourite for the job and he was confirmed boss on a dramatic day that also TMH 2014 Limited announced as the new owners, with IOR leaving after 17 years at the helm.
Moore – who has more than 900 games under his belt as a manager – has a wealth of experience having previously managed Rotherham, Tranmere and Oldham.
Player-coach Sam Collins had been in caretaker charge and has been appointed assistant manager to Moore.
New chairman Peter Harris has taken over the running of the club from Ken Hodcroft and he has spoken of his delight at capturing Moore’s signature.
“We’re really pleased that Ronnie will be coming in as manager,” said Harris.
“We believe that having Ronnie in charge will give the club the best possible chance of remaining in the Football League and we will provide him with all the support he needs to help him achieve that.
“He is a very experienced manager, which is something we felt was needed but he’s also a tough character who is very much prepared for the battle ahead.”
Pools are rooted to the bottom of League Two, six points adrift of safety with a goal difference of -24 and Moore has a job on his hands turning around the season with the side not winning a league match in more than two months.
Moore was not among the early contenders but emerged as a strong candidate after his son and former Pools striker Ian Thomas-Moore revealed on Twitter that the vacant post would interest his dad, who took his first full-time management job at Rotherham 17 years ago where he led them to successive promotions to the second-tier in 2001.
Moore was due to be presented to the press this morning, along with assistant Collins and chairman Harris, before leading his first training session at the club’s Maiden Castle base in Durham.
The Scouser will then take charge of the team for the first time against Oxford United at home on Saturday – a match that Pools have slashed prices for.
Moore had been looking for a return after eight months out of work after being sacked by Tranmere earlier this year for breaching betting rules.
The former striker was fined £2,000 and given a one-month suspension, suspended for two years, after he admitted an FA charge relating to betting on competitions and matches in which his club was involved.
Moore broke the rules after placing bets for family members from his account, which on one occasion included a £1 stake on Tranmere to win in a double with Manchester United, which returned less than £4.
At the time, Moore admitted he should have known the rules and held his hands up adding: “It was a genuinely honest mistake made by myself and I am embarrassed about it.”
The unfortunate episode cost him his job at Tranmere but he is now back in management at Pools.
He takes over from ex-boss Paul Murray who was sacked, along with his assistant Willie Donachie, following the 2-1 FA Cup second round defeat to Blyth Spartans 10 days ago.
Murray had only been in the role for 45 days after taking over from Colin Cooper, who resigned at the start of October.
Other names linked to the job this time included former Middlesbrough coach Mark Venus, ex-Pools and Boro Number Two Craig Hignett who told club bosses no at the weekend and ex-Scunthorpe United boss Brian Laws.