HARTLEPOOL UNITED’S retained list will be announced on Thursday morning – with the club’s search for a manager continuing and yet to be resolved.

Players who were relegated from the Football League this season will find out if they are wanted for next campaign in the National League.

The decisions are believed to have been made by Paul Watson, the club’s head of recruitment, along with chief scout David Burn, who came to the club under the wing of former boss Dave Jones.

At the end of the season, acting boss Matthew Bates said he would be happy to have an input in the decision-making process, but it is not known if he has been consulted.

Bates is under contract for another season after signing a new deal last summer.

Billy Paynter, who worked alongside Bates to take charge of the team in the last two games of the season, is out of contract and will depart but will be fit for pre-season training at a new club after Achilles surgery.

Keiron Green yesterday signed for Gateshead, while defender Rob Jones will also exit after an injury-plagued spell at the club.

Interviews have been held over the last ten days for the manager’s job, but the process is likely to drag into next week.

Sam Collins, a former skipper and assistant boss dumped by Jones in March from a coaching position, remains favourite with the bookies, with odds of 2/5. Next in the list is Kevin Cooper, who was one of Jones’ assistant managers during his woeful time in charge.

There was support within the club’s hierarchy for Cooper to return as boss, but officials have been made well aware of the backlash and disgust among players and supporters if he was to be appointed.

Collins has been interviewed, as well as Gary Brabin, who has experience of managing in the National League with Luton, Tranmere and Cambridge. His odds shortened from 20/1 to 6/1 last night.

Chris Turner, twice former Pools boss, is also keen on a return to the club.

He spent six years at Chesterfield, the majority of time as chief executive before a short spell as director of football. He has twice managed Pools and also been the club’s director of sport under former owners IOR.