Chesterfield: Spireites begin new boss hunt as Cook departs

Dean Saunders is the early favourite to replace Paul Cook at Chesterfield
Dean Saunders is the early favourite to replace Paul Cook at Chesterfield
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Portsmouth unveiled Paul Cook as their new manager yesterday formally opening the race for Spireites’ new leader.

Cook has been awarded a three year contract at Fratton Park, where he’s been joined by his assistant Leam Richardson.

The move ends Cook’s successful two and a half year spell at the Proact Stadium which has seen him lead the team to the JPT Final, League Two title and League One play-off semi-final.

Spireites Chief Executive Chris Turner said: “I would like to thank Paul for the fine job he has done as manager of Chesterfield and wish him well for the future.

“We will be looking to appoint Paul’s successor as soon as possible and the incoming manager will be in the enviable position of inheriting a strong squad.”

Cook said: “I’d like to place on record my thanks to Chris, Chairman Dave Allen and the rest of the Board for giving me the opportunity to manage such a great club.

“I’d like to thank the staff in all departments of the club for everything they have done during my time at the club.

“Most importantly, I’d also like to thank the players, who have been fantastic, both on and off the pitch.

“Finally, thanks to the fans for their superb support.”

On his appointment on the South Coast, Cook said: “I won’t be taking a break until I’m comfortable that things are in place and there are a lot of things to sort out.

“But this is a new beginning and I’m delighted to be named Pompey manager.

“I had a great journey at Chesterfield and enjoyed my time there immensely.

“But being able to manage a club like this is something I’m very excited about.

“I want to steer the ship in the right direction, but a lot of hard work is needed because there is no magic wand in football.

“I’ve played against Pompey in the past and also managed against them, so know what the crowd is like.

“But I think everyone is aware of the fantastic fans here and we’ll do our best to give them a successful team.”

Ex-Doncaster Rovers boss Dean Saunders is believed to be in pole position to take over the reins at the Proact but he’ll have to work without Jimmy Ryan, Drew Talbot and Armand Gnanduillet, none of whom have been offered new deals with Spireites.