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Excitement is the name of the game for Cooper
COLIN Cooper is out to give the Hartlepool United crowd something to cheer.
Form, entertainment and positive results have been in short supply in recent seasons, but with a new management team in place, Cooper is out to impress.
Pools sold 3,500 season tickets after putting them on offer for £150 this summer and today the home crowd get their first chance to see Cooper's side in action.
Southend, managed by Phil Brown, are the visitors and Cooper, after two away games opened their season, admitted: "The majority of fans only get to the Vic so it's a good opportunity for them to see us and for us to link in with them.
"We want them to feel part of what is a new start and a new era. There are a few spicy elements to the game with Phil coming back.
"He's got a victory under his belt but we're looking to get off to a positive start at home.
"I'd like the fans to get down and support us because I believe, if they do stick with us, they'll get a positive return over the coming weeks and months.''
Pools won just five games at Victoria Park last season, scoring a mere 19 goals.
But Cooper admitted: "We have to try and provide the fans with some football which they watch and enjoy.
"That is fast, counter-attacking football.
"With that performances and results will hopefully come and it can turn the Vic into a fortress.
"But first and foremost we want teams to come here and not get an easy ride.
"It's our job to give every one of those fans something they want to come and watch. Myself and Craig have to try to turn that 3,500 crowd into 5,000, then 6,000 and 7,000.''
Shrimpers boss Phil Brown was offered the Victoria Park job last season, and he revealed this week that consternations over the make up of his backroom team saw the deal collapse.
Cooper said of his counterpart: "Phil's career went on a different path to mine.
"We have met many times and he's a smashing guy.
"We've always got on really well and he'll certainly get a warm welcome from me and hopefully everyone else.''
Pools are a man down after selling Peter Hartley to Stevenage this week and Cooper is hoping to attract a couple of new signings following his departure.
There are no additions in for today and he said: "The ideal scenario is turning the disappointment of losing Peter into a positive by getting a couple of new lads in.
"Now there is a chink of manoeuvrability for us and we have to be productive with the two weeks that we've got left.
"What Pete leaves us with is an opportunity to bring one or two in.
"Whether that's permanents or using that money for loan fees, we'll see.
"We've lost another senior player and it leaves us young.
"The loan market is mainly younger players so hopefully we can maybe use that money to bring one or two more senior lads in.
"So I'd like to think we can utilise Pete's money to do something other than loans.
"I would still like our North-East neighbours to knock on the door and say 'we'd like this lad to play some league football, how do you feel about taking him?"