Who is 'cult figure' Neil Warnock? The man tasked with saving Middlesbrough from relegation

Who is Neil Warnock? The man tasked with saving Middlesbrough from relegationWho is Neil Warnock? The man tasked with saving Middlesbrough from relegation
Who is Neil Warnock? The man tasked with saving Middlesbrough from relegation
Neil Warnock is the man tasked with saving Middlesbrough from relegation to League One after replacing Jonathan Woodgate today – but what can we expect from him?

Here, we take a look at everything you need to know about the former chiropodist…


Middlesbrough have sacked Jonathan Woodgate in order to save the club from relegation to League One – where they could potentially join Sunderland.

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Boro find themselves deep in trouble following a 3-0 defeat at the hands of Swansea City on at the Riverside Stadium on Saturday.

Woodgate has managed just nine wins all campaign and leaves Middlesbrough are level on points with third-bottom Hull City ahead of the final eight games of the Championship campaign.

In Warnock, however, Steve Gibson has appointed a man who has been widely described as a Championship specialist.


Middlesbrough are the 16th club the 71-year-old veteran has managed, with his past employers including Sheffield United, Crystal Palace, QPR and Leeds and Cardiff, who he left earlier in November.

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Since starting his managerial career in 1980 with Gainsborough Town, Warnock has won promotion to the top flight on four occasions – most recently with Cardiff in 2018 – and is noted for being bringing defensive stability to his teams.


Indeed, the charismatic Yorkshireman has become somewhat of a footballing cult figure in recent years given his touchline antics, fiery interviews and portrayal in a documentary filmed during his time at Sheffield United.

There are so many ‘Warnock-isms’ to go at, but try searching his name in YouTube alongside ‘Kevin Muscat’ and ‘Liam Gallagher’ for a flavour of the man’s intriguing managerial style.

Warnock is a stalwart of the English press conference and is every bit as entertaining as Jose Mourinho, Sam Allardyce, Sir Alex Ferguson, Ian Holloway, Mick McCarthey and the late Brian Clough.


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“David Elleray was that far away he would have needed binoculars,” Warnock said of the referee after Sheffield United’s defeat to Southampton in 2001. “I really think it’s about time we use the means to sort these things out rather than relying on some bald-headed bloke standing 50 yards away.”

A match between Sheffield United and West Brom was abandoned after the Blades received three red cards and two players went off injured, leaving the referee with no option as just six United men were on the field.

Warnock said in the aftermath: “The way it has all come out so far, you would think I was guilty of committing more crimes than Osama Bin Laden.”

On the former Liverpool and Blackburn attacker El Haj Diouf, Warnock explained: “For many years I have thought he was the gutter type… I was going to call him a sewer rat, but that might be insulting to sewer rats. He’s the lowest of the low.”

In a bizarre turn of events, he went on to sign Diouf while in charge at Leeds United.