Cooper aims to build on fifth-place finish

Noah Dougherty
Friday 07 June 2019

Forest Green Rovers boss Mark Cooper says they will follow the same approach as last summer’s successful transfer window ahead of the 2019/20 season.

Having signed defender Matt Mills at the end of May to add to forward Taylor Allen, Cooper currently has a squad of 19 players, with midfielder Reece Brown out of contract at the end of the month.

FGR appointed Rich Hughes last summer as head of recruitment, an important addition to the club’s backroom staff.

Cooper has not put a number on how many more recruits could come through the door at The New Lawn this summer, but says they will be as meticulous as they were last season in order to push for the automatic spots in League Two.

“There’s no set number,” he said.

“We didn’t have a big squad last year, so we probably need three or four more.

“We’re trying to be as selective as we were last season.

“We had a really decent summer of recruitment and we want to do the same to get us that five or six more points that we need to get into the top three.

“We still might lose one or two because there is interest in one or two of our younger players, so we’ll wait to see if that does transpire then we’ll have to recruit more.

“I’m looking at four or five to start with and then see how we go.” 

Cooper says he is hoping to have his transfer business wrapped up by the time the team head away on their pre-season training camp.

Following the success of the camp in Devon last summer, Cooper will take his team to Woodbury Park on Sunday, July 7, which will last until Thursday, July 11, with the first pre-season friendly game against Weston-super-Mare on the way back.

Having all but got his squad in place before last year’s trip to Devon, he knows the value in that and forging a close-knit group.

“That’s the aim,” he added.

“It’s really tough because everyone is working in a small pool of players.

“We’re a little bit different with the pool we work in so we have more of an opportunity.

“We’re trying to work hard to make sure the ones we bring in add to a really good squad.”