Former Forest Green manager Mark Cooper appointed as the new boss of Barrow

Former Forest Green boss Mark Cooper has made a swift return to football as manager of Barrow

The Cumbrian club confirmed Cooper’s appointment on Friday.

The 52-year-old was sacked by Forest Green after five years at the helm last month after a poor run of results saw them slip out of the automatic promotion places.

He has signed a three-year deal with Barrow, who confirmed he would be assisted by Richard Dryden.

“I’ve had five years at one club, and now I am really looking forward to the new challenge here at Barrow,” Cooper told his new club’s official website.

“The board and the owners have done everything they could to try and get me; they made it clear that they wanted me, and they want to try and evolve to make Barrow a strong force in League Two.

“One of the biggest things we’re looking forward to is seeing fans back in the stadium because it is a really hostile environment when they’re there. I know they’ll be desperate to get back in regularly and get behind the lads in the Football League for the first time in nearly 50 years.

“We have to use that support, get the fans behind us and engage with them. I think they will love the way that we’re going to play so I am looking forward to seeing the place rocking and making it an intimidating atmosphere for our opposition.”

Barrow returned to the Football League for the first time in 48 years last summer and finished two places above the relegation zone.

The Bluebirds sacked two managers over the course of the campaign – David Dunn last December and Michael Jolley in February of this year. Rob Kelly stepped in on an interim basis after each dismissal but left before Cooper’s appointment.

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