Managerless Reds stay silent over Cooper link

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Barnsley were no nearer appointing a new manager last night after it appeared that Swindon Town rejected an approach for their current boss, Mark Cooper.

Oakwell chiefs opted to remain silent yesterday after it emerged, via BBC local radio on Wiltshire, that a formal approach for Cooper had been rejected by the County Ground outfit.

It would be no surprise if Barnsley tried to lure Cooper to Oakwell because the 46-year-old ex-Peterborough, Darlington and Kettering boss has guided the Reds’ rivals to a heady second place in the League One table.

The son of former Leeds United and England full-back Terry, Cooper has done a terrific job since taking over the Robins from Kevin MacDonald in the summer of 2013.

He has since won 42, drawn 18 and lost 30 games while in charge of Swindon.

Once news leaked out of Swindon’s apparent rejection of any approach last night, attention switched to Oldham manager Lee Johnson, who was then installed as the new bookies’ favourite to replace Danny Wilson.

Johnson, aged 32, is also having a fine season in what is his first managerial position, and has guided the Latics into the play-off positions despite having minimal funds at his disposal.

It certainly promises to be an interesting question and answer session at Barnsley’s Old Number 7 pub tomorrow night when chief executive Ben Mansford and club owner Patrick Cryne are set to meet Reds fans - though numbers are limited to 50 - from 7.30pm onwards.

Reds midfielder Brad Abbott, meanwhile, has extended his loan stay at Conference Premier side Chester into a second month. Saturday’s 1-0 win at Lincoln City was due to be Abbott’s final game of his initial loan spell, but the Doncaster-born 20-year-oldd had already indicated his desire to remain at the Deva Stadium.

Abbott, who has made eight appearances for the Reds so far this season, made his Chester debut in a goalless draw at Southport, but has since helped Steve Burr’s men to four straight victories.