Paul Murray: Hartlepool United appoint ex-player as manager

Paul Murray
Paul Murray was working as first-team coach at League One side Oldham

Hartlepool United have named former midfielder Paul Murray as first-team manager, following the departure of Colin Cooper earlier this month.

The 38-year-old, who made 105 appearances for Pools in three years at Victoria Park as a player, had been working at Oldham as first-team coach.

Ex-Newcastle coach Willie Donachie joins as assistant manager.

Caretaker bosses Sam Collins and Stephen Pears retain their existing jobs as coach and goalkeeping coach.

Murray made more than 500 league and cup appearances during his playing career, notably for Carlisle, QPR and Oldham.

Number two Donachie played for four English clubs, principally Manchester City, and won 35 Scotland caps before moving into coaching, which included a spell as Millwall boss in 2006-07.

Pools managers since December 2008
Colin Cooper - May 2013-October 2014
John Hughes - November 2012-May 2013
Micky Barron (caretaker) - October 2012-November 2012
Neale Cooper - December 2011-October 2012
Micky Barron (caretaker) - December 2011
Mick Wadsworth - August 2010-December 2011
Chris Turner - December 2008-August 2010
Danny Wilson - June 2006-December 2008

Pools, who are next to bottom in League Two with 11 points from 14 games, have struggled to acclimatise in the bottom tier following their relegation in 2012-13.

Cooper became their fifth manager in as many years when he succeeded John Hughes in May 2013, with no boss since Danny Wilson from 2006 to 2008 lasting two years in the job.

At one stage in his first season Cooper had Pools within six points of the play-offs, but the departure of assistant coach Craig Hignett to Middlesbrough resulted in a run of one win in nine games that saw the club avoid relegation to the Conference by only three points.

This season started with three straight defeats and although two victories followed in the next three games, a five-match winless streak saw Pools drop to the bottom of the Football League, prompting Cooper's resignation on 4 October.

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