HARTLEPOOL United Chairman Raj Singh has explained the decision making behind deciding to part company with manager Graeme Lee.

The former Pools player was relieved of his duties last night following five months in charge at the club. Lee managed to steer the team to League Two safety with five games remaining whilst taking the team on prolonged runs in the FA Cup and the Papa John’s Trophy.

However, following a run of just one win from their last eleven games, the club hierarchy have felt now is the right time to for change.

Singh maintains that the club is going in the right direction on and off the pitch which has played a significant role in the timing of his decision.

He explained on the club’s website: “After achieving promotion back to the Football League last year, we remain ambitious as a club to continue our progress with promotion to League One being our target.

“We have a brilliant fan base and the crowds at the Suit Direct Stadium this season have been outstanding with an average of 5,200.

“We have put a lot of work into operating the club with a robust financial and commercial model to protect it long-term. This is now allowing us to bring back the academy and we will be making a number of other significant investments into infrastructure and people this summer.

“Further, after investing money into the team in January, we will continue to add more quality this summer window and beyond.”

Singh added that work is underway to appoint a replacement swiftly as he continued: “The club has made real progress over recent years and I felt it important to make this decision now, so we can get our new manager in place as early as possible to prepare for the new season.”

Assistant manager Micky Nelson and first team coach Antony Sweeney will take first team duties for tomorrow's game against Colchester United in which is their final one of the League Two campaign.