Manager Neale Cooper has praised striker Steve Howard and goalkeeper Scott Flinders following Hartlepool's 1-0 win over Sunderland.Howard, back at the club where he started his career following his summer move from Leicester, scored the only goal of the game early in the first half. "I thought Steve Howard was excellent and deserved his goal," Cooper told the club's official website. "He needs games because he hasn't played a lot at Leicester, but he looked a handful." Cooper added: "I have to say the save Scott Flinders made in the second half is genuinely one of the best I've seen in my life - it was like Gordon Banks! "It was a phenomenal save and he was brilliant all game. Having him back there you can see the defence are more confident and I was pleased with them."