Hartlepool youngsters’ chance to impress Cooper

Hartlepool United reserve-team coach Sam Collins at the club's training camp in Spain
Hartlepool United reserve-team coach Sam Collins at the club's training camp in Spain
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BOSS Colin Cooper has taken a group of youth team players to Hartlepool United’s Spanish training camp as a reward for their efforts over the summer.

Midfielder Kieran Green, 17, winger Connor Smith, 17, and young goalkeeper Jon Barber, son of former Darlington keeper Fred, are taking part in the training sessions with the first-team squad at the La Cala Resort.

Green arrived at Pools from Stockton Town at Under-14 level and has impressed coaching staff with his determined style of play in the centre of midfield.

Smith, meanwhile, is among the latest generation coming through the ranks and made his league debut as a substitute against Exeter o the final day of last season.

Reserve-team coach Sam Collins said of Green: “He has a really good attitude, is really keen and has looked after himself really well through the summer.

“This is a bit of a pat on the back really for what he has done through the summer months and we decided to bring him along with us to Spain.

“We also have young Connor Smith, a winger. He played in the reserves a few times last year and has a great attitude and wants to learn.

“If both of them continue to work hard, want to learn and get better then they will be fine.

“We also have goalkeeper Jon Barber with us, who played a couple of reserve games last year.”

Coach Collins will be helping to oversee their continued development this year.

The 37-year-old central defender was out of contract at Pools this summer but signed a new deal, which will see him combine playing with the role of assistant first and reserve team coach at the Sky Bet League Two club.

He is in overall charge of the second string at Victoria Park.