EXCLUSIVE: Hopkin signs up at Ton

Published: 5 Jun 2012 12:000 comments

Former Morton midfielder David Hopkin has been appointed as the club's joint reserve-team coach, the Tele can exclusively reveal.

WELCOME RETURN: David Hopkin, pictured on the right, when he played for Morton. Below, Warren Hawke and Mark McNally, who have both welcomed his appointment as reserve-team coach.

Former Morton midfielder David Hopkin has been appointed as the club's joint reserve-team coach, the Tele can exclusively reveal.

The role will see the 41-year-old, who had two playing spells at Cappielow - the first of which saw him earn a £350,000 move to Chelsea - and starred for Crystal Palace, Leeds United and Bradford City, team up with Finn Jonatan Johansson to oversee the Ton second string.

With the SFL having offered clubs the option of participating in an

under-19 league or a reserve league next season, Morton have opted for the latter and will use the side to bridge the gap between the youth academy and the first team.

And seven-times capped Scotland internationalist Hopkin has been tasked with preparing the players for the transition to Allan Moore's squad after he was headhunted by club development consultant Warren Hawke.

Hopkin said: "Warren approached me around six weeks ago and asked if I'd be interested in getting involved with the academy.

"Coaching is something I've always enjoyed, and I was looking to get back in the game. But I didn't want to mess Warren or the club around and told him I'm more interested in working with older teenagers, players of first-team age really.

"That's when he came back to me and offered me the position of reserve-team coach alongside Jonatan Johansson.

"I get on well with Jonatan. We were both on the A licence course together down at Largs last week, and we share a lot of the same ideas about the game, so I was delighted to accept.

"I'm a local guy, I started and finished my professional career with Morton and go along to Cappielow to watch the games. This club is close to my heart - it's great to be involved here again."

As well as fielding those who were retained from last season's under-17 and 19 squads, including the likes of Lewis Hawke, Alan Frizzell and Declan McDaid, players on the fringes of the first team will also turn out for the reserves.

That being the case, Ton assistant, Mark McNally, believes he and Allan Moore can only benefit from a successful reserve side and says he is delighted that Hopkin has decided to come on board.

He said: "It's brilliant news. We'll have two good footballing guys in Hoppy and Jonatan Johansson working with the reserves.

"We're delighted to have them at the club. They have played at a very high level and that raises the profile too. It's a real win-win situation."

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