Matthew Bates has been named as First Team Coach at Vanarama National League club Hartlepool United.
The former Middlesbrough defender had a two-game spell as caretaker manager with the Victoria Park club at the end of last season, as he tried to keep them in the Football League.
Bates took charge of a 1-0 defeat at Cheltenham Town and their home win over Doncaster Rovers on the final day of last season.
That win over an already-promoted Rovers side wasn’t enough to ensure survival, with Newport County’s home win over Notts County condemning Pools to the National League.
Now Bates has been handed a permanent role in Pools manager Craig Harrison’s backroom staff.
The thirty year old will still be registered as a player for the coming season.
However, the North East club confirmed that Bates will focus on coaching and will have control of their reserve side.
Speaking to the club’s official website Bates said “This is something I have wanted to do for a number of years, even more so after getting that taste of it last season”
“Part of what is happening is that I will be First Team Coach but I will also be taking Reserve Team games so that gives me a broad role and it’s great for my learning.
“The Club are looking to get me on the A Licence course, which is brilliant – the football will come first obviously but the qualification is a work in progress in the background to further educate me.
“I will still say registered as a player, keep myself right and be available if needed but I really want to give my all to the coaching now and learn as much as I can.
“Everything seems to be moving in the right direction – the lads are back in for pre-season, there’s a good feeling about so we have to build on that and take things to the next level.”
Article: Mark Carruthers (@marknldaily)
Image: Reuters Media