Neil Warnock and Cardiff City, a match made in Heaven?

Coymay

I’ve just finished watching a programme in which Dean Saunders investigated the impact Wales’ success in the Euros this summer has had on grass roots football in this country. This sounds patronising, but I wasn’t expect a great deal from the programme because I thought it would be a rose tinted view of things, but I ended up being impressed –  it was well researched and there was a degree of realism involved that I didn’t see coming, but, essentially, the conclusions reached were optimistic ones which suggested that at it’s top and bottom levels, Welsh football is in good health.

Unfortunately, at the next level below the national team (i.e. the four senior Welsh clubs that compete in the English pyramid system), the situation is completely different – in fact, it could be argued that things are as bad as they’ve been for more than a decade.

After all, we are currently coming to the end of an unprecedented week where three of them have sacked their managers and with Wrexham’s dead man walking boss Gary Mills having seen his team lose at home last night, there’s still time for the North Wales club to make it a quartet of managerial dismissals (I’ve just checked and he’s not gone yet!).

Newport’s former boss, the ex City striker Warren Feeney,  went after County’s 1-0 defeat at Grimsby eight days ago which left them at the bottom of League Two  and Swansea’s Francesco Guidolin was sacked on his sixty first birthday on Monday with his former side only being kept put of the relegation places on goal difference following a run of no wins since the opening day of the season.

Both the decision to dismiss Guidolin and the manner in which Swansea went about it has, seemingly, caused great consternation among jacks supporters with what I believe was a unanimously negative feedback being recorded on the Radio Wales phone in held on Monday to discuss the sacking and the appointment of new boss Bob Bradley.

Last night, there was another phone in to discuss the latest sacking at a top Welsh club and this time the response was completely different.

I can remember Bobby Gould, Alan Cork and Dave Jones out of the crop of City managers we’ve had this century losing their jobs after chants were heard against them at what turned out to be their final game in charge and now Paul Trollope can be added to the list.

A cruel rendition of “Trollope for England” heard at the 2-0 defeat at Burton on Saturday signified the moment when the widespread individual disquiet with the Head Coach turned into something more unified  and significant and while a “You’re getting sacked in the morning” chant turned out to be forty eight hours or so out, go Trollope did with City last but one in the Championship following just two wins from the dozen competitive matches he had charge of.

City’s triumvirate at the top when it comes to off field management (Vincent Tan, Mehmet Dalman and Ken Choo) have come in for a lot of criticism as the team have slid down the table and so they may have been a little concerned as to how their decision to dismiss Trollope would be received,  but they need not have bothered.

That phone in last night I mentioned earlier did not attract one caller saying the decision to change the manager/Head Coach was a wrong one – if there were any complaints, they were that it wasn’t done quickly enough.

Usually when there is a change of manager at a football club, you get a range of views for and against it, but it seems to be completely different as far as Paul Trollope is concerned. Trollope did still have the odd supporter here and there (one of which is an occasional contributor on here), but, essentially, the range of views expressed went from sympathy for a man who could still have a good future in the game, but had to go, to something approaching joy that he had gone.

I was in the former camp and still thought Trollope could survive before the Burton game, but that listless defeat coming on the heals of that tepid showing against Derby had me believing it would be best for all concerned if a change was made – it was the complete absence of signs of any improvement which did for me in the end.

There were two other departures – Assistant Lennie Lawrence and Performance Director Ryland Morgans  were seen very much as Trollope appointments and so it was almost inevitable that they would go if he did.

The departure of Lawrence made it hard to guess who would be taking over on a temporary basis as the search for a new manager went on, but, almost immediately, there were online stories linking us with Neil Warnock appearing and things moved on so quickly then that, by yesterday evening there was a general acceptance that the hugely experienced Warnock would be our new boss. This was confirmed early this morning with news that Keven Blackwell and Ronnoe Jepson (both of whom have extensive experience of working with Warnock) had also been appointed as Assistant Manager and First Team Coach respectively.

So, just as the jacks had their new manager in place less than twenty four hours after the old one left, so have City, but the comparison ends there because, while Huw Jenkins and the new American owners have been criticised by club supporters for the Bradley appointment, there has been widespread praise for their equivalents at Cardiff for the Warnock appointment – it’s fair to say that Messrs Tan, Dalman and Choo are currently basking in the praise which has followed their best day of the season so far.

Certainly, if it all goes wrong for Neil Warnock here then the only way our owner and his close associates could be blamed would be if there is a falling out between the two parties over something like interference in Warnock’s work from above – always a possibility given the personalities of Messrs Tan and Warnock I suppose.

Apart from that set of circumstances, it’s hard to see how Tan, Dalman and Choo can be criticised in the future on this appointment anyway. They acted quickly and decisively to remove someone who was just not delivering the required results or team performances and replaced him soon after with a man that has a reputation which is almost second to none (in fact, it may be second to none) where the Championship is concerned – speaking as someone who is not slow to have a go at the three gentlemen concerned, I’d say Messrs Tan, Dalman and Choo deserve to be praised this time.

That said, I’m pretty sure I’m not the only City supporter to have been no great fan of Neil Warnock in the past. In fact, in this piece under the part headed “the performance of Crystal Palace” from the very early days of this blog, it is very clear what I thought of Mr Warnock in October 2009.

I would say however, that events since then have made me reconsider those opinions to some extent. For a start, while I don’t think we’ll ever be praising a Neil Warnock side for it’s beautiful, flowing, football, his QPR Championship winning team in 2011 were capable of playing some very watchable stuff and a lot of that was down to our new manager being able to persuade very high level performances out of the brilliant, but moody, Adel Taarabt.

Although it was a tempestuous relationship at times, I would have thought that, given the way his career has gone since leaving QPR, Taarabt would have to pick Warnock as the best manager he’s played under. All of this, despite me having the Moroccan down as exactly the type of player our new manager would have got shot of while barely giving him a chance previously.

Warnock left QPR in 2012 and with subsequent spells at Leeds, Palace and then QPR again not going that well, it would have been easy to think that the man who has won promotion from this division seven times had lost his mojo, but then rescuing Rotherham from the drop in the final third of last season would have to be regarded right up there with his best achievements in management.

Upon checking it, a record of won six, drawn six and lost four at Rotherham was quite a bit worse than I expected it to be, but it doesn’t really tell the whole story, because, after only picking up one point without scoring a single goal in his first three matches in charge, Warnock’s Rotherham reeled off six wins and two draws in their next eight games to put so much distance between them and the bottom three, that they could still finish nine points clear of the drop despite not winning any of their last five matches.

A bit of a quiz for you, can you identify the two current day Championship managers in this picture from 1977/78? I googled the question

A bit of a quiz for you, can you identify the two current day Championship managers in this picture from 1977/78?
I googled the question “what sort of player was Neil Warnock?”, but didn’t really get much of an answer, I can remember him playing on the wing for Rotherham and, apparently, he was Hartlepool’s Player of the Year in 1972, but that’s about all I can tell you I’m afraid.

So, basically, Warnock was able to save the side with the smallest budget in the league from relegation within about two months of taking over – that’s an incredible achievement I feel.

Certainly, having thirty five matches to rescue City from the drop when they are currently only one point adrift of the safety mark would appear to be a doddle compared to what he faced at Rotherham, but I stick by what I said in the final paragraph of my piece on the Burton game;-

“We are a club that you just cannot see making a Terry Burton type appointment at the moment and if,  more by luck than judgment, we were able to appoint the “right” man to replace Paul Trollope, even an experienced old hand like, say, Neil Warnock would be taking on one of the biggest jobs of his career if he came here – we are getting it wrong on so many levels and have been doing so for at least a couple of years.”

As can be seen, I used Neil Warnock just as an example because there was nothing but wishful thinking on the part of a few messageboard posters linking him to Cardiff at the time and, being optimistic, I’d like to think that, perhaps, the appointment of someone who is one the most least likely yes men on the planet might be seen as an early sign that, finally, the penny has dropped among the club’s hierarchy that it’s best to let football men get on with the football.

Neil Warnock is someone who I never contemplated as a possible for the City job when it became vacant after the departures of Ole and Russell Slade, for the simple reason that he would be too much of his own man for Vincent Tan’s tastes. However, with us “getting it wrong on so many levels”, it may be that we might start resembling what passes for a normally run club in this industry.

So, assuming Neil Warnock is allowed to get on and manage, what can the players expect from him. Well, firstly, I make it that three of them will have a very good idea of what’s coming after working for him in the past – Matt Connolly was a regular in that 2011 QPR side I mentioned, Warnock tried to sign Lee Peltier for £3 million when he was at Loftus Road and appointed him as his captain when he took over at Leeds and Stuart O’Keefe would have been at Palace when he was there.

A term I see used very often in relation to Neil Warnock is “old school”. It’s a bit of a tired cliche to apply I suppose, but, as someone who is old enough to have cut his teeth at a time when the job of managing a football club was much different to what it is now, it is easy to conjure up this mental image of him having nowt to do with these new fangled diets, analytics and performance stats.

I daresay this is an image that Warnock plays up to a bit himself, because it’s hard to imagine someone who is completely averse to new thinking and methods being able to stay in the game as long as he’s done. Deep down though, he does seem to be an old fashioned motivator at heart and, to my mind at least, that is exactly what the City team has been most in need of over the past couple of months.

I have an inking that if “the Cardiff Way” still exists, our conversion to it will be put on hold for the rest of the season at least, because keeping us in this division by any means possible will have become the order of the day for our new manager and highfalutin ideas about a club identity will be for someone else to introduce.

In saying that, as the manager who included a fifteen year old John Bostock in  the Palace team which visited Ninian Park in November 2007, Warnock has shown that he may not be averse to including a kid in his team in the way that a predecessor of his at Cardiff, who also could be termed old school, was.

I always think that a facet of football management which does not get the credit it deserves is the ability to improve the players you inherit when you go to a new club. With no loan window to fall back on, this is a talent which becomes even more vital this season and            I’m sure Neil Warnock will, rightly, believe that he can do that with the City squad.

However, given the very poor level of performance we have seen in virtually every game this season and with confidence levels being as low as I can remember them being at any time since our return to the second tier thirteen years ago, that level of improvement will need to be a lot bigger than what you might normally expect when a manager with a reputation like Warnock’s goes to a new club – especially one with a historically “eccentric” way of being run. What I will say in finishing though is that I feel better about City’s immediate prospects today than I have done for months on the back of the new managerial appointment.

 

 

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13 Responses to Neil Warnock and Cardiff City, a match made in Heaven?

  1. Richard Holt says:

    I very much share the sentiments expressed in your final sentence Paul. I’d begun to feel relegation was a near-certainty but at least now there seems a reasonable chance that such a fate can be avoided. Nevertheless I still think this feels like a ‘999 emergency appointment -obviously needed in current circumstances but perhaps not the one that is going to prevent similar such circumstances returning in a post-Warnock future (note Rotherham’s current league position).
    Incidentally Paul, you may remember a quiz question I set some months ago regarding three future City managers appearing against City for three different clubs in three successive matches in October 1975 (May for Wrexham, Goodfellow for Rotherham and Mullen for Sheffield Wednesday). Well our next game in that sequence was Aldershot away with a certain Neil Warnock in Aldershot’s team. Thought I’d check the Chester team who we played next for some sort of idea as to who Warnock’s successor might be but no-one looks an obvious candidate unless Michael Owen’s dad is some sort of clue !

  2. MIKE HOPE says:

    Paul,everything has happened so quickly over the past 24 hours or so and I have looked forward to reading your initial reaction, as you are unquestionably the best read on the blogosphere or the press.['read' pronounced 'reed'].
    I anticipated the headline ”The right man at the right time ? ” to which I would have answered an unequivocal ‘Yes’. Whether a higher authority has been involved I am not qualified to say!
    You mention the impact of the Terry Burton appointment which as you have said coincided with the loan of Gary O’Neil.I can recall discussions at the time as to which of the two appointments was the main reason for our spectacular improvement in form.
    I think it was mainly the latter but his performances inspired confidence and improvements in the rest of the team. I think Joe Ledley still speaks of Gary as an influence on his career.
    I am optimistic that Warnock’s motivational skills will bring the best out of our better players and this will rub off on the rest of the squad.
    The appointment will I hope stop the argument , which I have never supported, that Tan only wants a ‘Yes man’ as manager.
    I think it is more accurate to say that he has been scarred by the money wasted by previous managers and is now more watchful.Has he learned with the appointment of Trollope that there is some truth in the maxim ”Buy cheap buy twice”?
    The acid test of whether Messrs Tan and Warnock can work together will probably come in January when the latter comes up with his shopping list.On this subject I think that Mr W will give more weight to what he knows about players than the analytical data available.
    Whatever happens and whatever one thinks of Neil Warnock I am sure that we can look forward to our next games with hope rather than trepidation and our stay at home fans can come out from behind the sofa to watch the televised games.
    P S
    The Mauve and Yellow headlines over the past year would give an interesting summary of our hopes and sufferings!

  3. Dai Woosnam says:

    Thoughtful stuff as ever, Paul. And as for Richard’s closing sentence …it had me LOL.

    Regarding your thoughts on Mr. Warnock, Paul, I know that you have long had certain
    misgivings re his modus operandi.

    And you are right to think that good manners are something to be praised. I do too. And the civil discourse that is the very hallmark of MAYA, is truly something to be commended.
    But here is the thing…

    That incident the other week, with Gary Monk and the penalty Leeds earned, was sooo illuminating.

    Monk tossed a wobbler with the Fourth Official, when one of his players fell to the ground at a corner. The Fourth Official clearly then got in the ear of the referee, and told him that the Leeds manager was screaming for a spot kick.
    Then within seconds, Leeds get another corner, and Connolly stupidly wrestles with their big Swede, and the blond chap ends up on the floor…and the ref whistles and points to the spot.
    Our manager, by contrast, would not say boo to a goose…and if a goose said boo to him, looks like he would probably burst into tears.
    So Paul, whilst I am with you in preferring gents to knaves, I think that football managers who are too polite, win nothing.

    Whether Ronald Koeman is the exception to the rule, I know not. But I recall his attitude to Nigel Clough and his Sheffield United assistant Chris Morgan, a year or so back, and I applauded his decision NOT to shake hands with either after the game…claiming that their non-stop attempts to intimidate the officials had been deplorable. And I thought Koeman was behaving in a principled way.
    But in the real world, most fans would sooner a Nigel Clough in their dugout than a Paul Trollope.

    As for Warnock…I have listened to him a lot on Talksport in recent years. And I must say, that I have grown to rather like the bloke. So I wish him well.

    But that said, he cannot ALWAYS perform heroics. He is due a failure.
    Let us hope it is not to be at Cardiff City.

    And finally…a big “well done” to Sir Vincent. WHAT a man !! Far too good an owner for a tiny “riff-raff, bear a grudge” minority of our supporters.

  4. Dai Woosnam says:

    I forgot to add a postcript.
    50 years from now, this will be a Trivial Pursuit question:
    Name the year when all three of South Wales’ professional Football League teams, sacked their managers inside the space of 7 days?

  5. Lindsay Davies says:

    Well, it looks as though my decision to calm down and take what comes with better grace was, uncharacteristically, well-timed. A relatively exciting and, certainly, re-assuring, appointment – although I was rather hoping for Bruce (was that always out-of-the-question?). I agree with Dai W – Warnock may well be more likeable than is generally perceived. Mind you, my QPR-supporting stepson has drawn my attention to an unflattering anagram of our new Manager’s name; rather too rude for these well-mannered columns!
    Richard – I think I was at that Aldershot match; I certainly saw them lose away to the ‘Shots, one midweek in the 70s – and, even Cardiff can’t have done that too often.

  6. Barry Cole says:

    Well Paul like you and most of the lads on here I am absolutely delighted that at last a football decision has been made and tan has got it totally correct. Yes I was sorry that Trollope went but he wasn’t the right man neither was slade, too much yes sir.
    This is a double whammy in that warnock brings in his vast football knowledge something we have lacked since Dave Jones.
    I feel really positive on this appointment and perhaps tan now realises that to get the best returns he needs the football manager to manage the football and he and his team manage the finances.
    Another plus for him is that Warnock is not known for spending silly money and I am sure that was one of the pluses in the decision.
    The one thing in all this is we have a manager that has a soft spot for Cardiff and the fans, a manager who will fight for his beliefs and a manager with a good track record.
    He wants that eighth promotion and I really fancy our chances of getting in the top six now. We have lost a couple of good players but by Christmas Warnock will know exactly who he wants and I am sure that he will get any funds to make that top six a goal.

  7. Russell says:

    Thanks Paul it’s interesting times indeed, my guess Warnock will begin to wind up his foes quickly starting with Johnson’s Bristol side

    He is probably grinning with delight at the thought of rocking up at Rafa’s Newcastle as massive mighty underdogs ,and annoying him., as this is what gets him and his team’s going, he does motivate and yes he implodes, but hey ,who cares this season was going down the pan anyway , let’s do if style I say.

    I read that he should bring in players,I for one don’t think he will, we have good players, lets try Gunnerson as a captain, Whitt’s playing in his natural positon would be a good starter, from where he used to score freely.

    Manga to play with forward impetus rather than looking sideways.

    Kaden as a support striker perhaps .

    Pilkington out wide where he belongs.

    Pelts in along with another solid full back with no specials skills or expectation other than defending .

    Ten yards up the field when defending .

    442.

    Not play the newly failed Cardiff way ,a simple winning football way, will do nicely,thanks .

    Play offs here we come.

    And as a post note ,well done the board and owner for acting quickly and proving you listen and care and appear to be for the long haul .

    I’m actually looking forward the the next game , early start ,few beers and a win against our old foe.

  8. Gerry says:

    I am a long time reader of this excellent site but this is my first post on it.
    I have to start with a big thankyou to Paul for his consistently well written and illuminating articles. Today’s is no exception.
    I have never liked Neil Warnock. His behaviour and that of his teams in the past has often bordered on disgraceful. It saddens me that we have got to a point where we are relying on him to be our saviour. That said , given our position in the League and financial constraints, he probably represents the best option available to the Board to rescue a season that was heading towards disaster. In that sense they have probably done the right thing. Through gritted teeth I wish him success.

    I don’t think he will find it easy. I don’think we have a squad capable of reaching the top end of the table. It is almost completely lacking pace and creativity (the fact that people see the very limited Kareem Harris as a potential answer speaks volumes). Warnock’s powers of motivation should be enough to get us up the table a bit. But we will need major strengthening in January to get much further.

  9. Clive Harry says:

    Hi Everybody,
    Quiz answers Paul are Mick McCarthy and Neil Warnock.
    Turning to today’s business, it’s probably the most uplifting bit of news coming out of the Club since Bellamy’s signing. At last someone experienced is being brought into the club who has also been successful (I mentioned successful because dear old Rusty Spade was experienced but had never really achieved anything). I was even more pleased to see he is bringing his two evil henchmen with him to make up The Three Horsemen of the Warnockalypse. Hopefully we will now see an end to the sterile selections and bizarre substitutions we have become accustomed to and there will hopefully be a few teacups flying around if there are any more lacklustre displays.
    First up for me though will be the U23’s next Monday – with nowhere to hide at Leckwith, it will be interesting to see if Colin W is there (I’m afraid I mentioned his nickname on here previously Lindsay!).

  10. Lindsay Davies says:

    Thanks, Clive. My stepson had gently taunted me with a text earlier – “”So, it’s your turn with Colin – crackin’ cloob, Caaardiff, greht fanns..”.
    Mr Pollyanna here had no idea what he was talking about.
    Anyway, I’m all for it for now – Warnock is my age, so he gets the My Generation vote.

  11. Dai Woosnam says:

    Clive’s “Three Horsemen” line made me smile, but his “Rusty Spade” line was even better. And both lines had the bonus of not smacking of the midnight oil.

    And Lindsay’s stepson’s attempt at the Sheffield vernacular favoured by our new “merchant banker”, was also pretty impressive. Particularly liked his “eh” in his “great”, and his double n in “fanns”. (Not rightly sure why the latter works, but it succeeds somehow.)

    He does of course miss out the ubiquitous “me” though: and with Neil Warnock, that is something of an oversight, because when relaxed and bordering on the philosophical, NW peppers his sentences with that pronoun…as in…
    ‘…
    I love it, me…
    I rate him, me…
    …’

    So in the case of that sentence in Lindsay’s posting, I figure it would come out of NW’s mouth as …
    ‘…
    Me? Oh, I reckon they are a crackin cloob, me…
    …’

    Oh apropos of nothing …re the North of England pronunciation of “club”…(i.e. “cloob”):
    I cannot help but smile at the number of British radio and TV presenters who have commented with wry amusement on Rafa Benitez’ pronunciation of that word. And they wrongly take it as a sign of him “going native”, since he went to live in West Kirby.

    Not so. I think, were they to listen to Spanish football reports, that they would quickly discover that this is the way the word is pronounced throughout Spain !!
    DW.

  12. The other Bob Wilson says:

    Morning everyone, not got much time this morning, so I’m going to try (and probably fail!) to keep this brief.
    Clive, your quiz answers are right. There’s also an Academy game at Leckwith this Saturday lunchtime and, like you, I’ve wondered if our new manager might get along to have a look at some of his younger players – would have thought the Monday match was the more likely. We’ll never know whether Paul Trollope was a watcher of the junior teams then – all I can say for definite is that I never saw him at Treforest for an Academy match, but as I’ve never ever seen a City manager there at a game in eleven years of going to that venue, that hardly qualifies as another stick to beat him with!
    Gerry, first of all, welcome to the Feedback section, it’s great to hear from you. My opinion towards Neil Warnock has mellowed a bit these last few years – I don’t think the football his sides play is as agricultural as it once was and I believe he is shrewd enough to realise that teams cannot be as physical these days as they were, say, fifteen years ago, therefore, I wouldn’t be surprised if he has decided that continuing with the sort of approach I once associated with his sides is counter productive now.
    Where I’m with you though is with your assessment of how we are likely to do under Warnock’s management. No amount of motivation will be able to add pace to a player or a squad and you, very effectively, illustrate how deep our problems are when you point out that Kadeem Harris, who has come to be regarded as a vital player for us in the eyes of many, is really someone who is still unproven at this level and would probably struggle to get into most other Championship sides. I cannot share the optimism that sees us now regarded as top six candidates in some people’s eyes. I’d say a finishing position to match our one of season 13/14 (eleventh) is more realistic, but I think that may well be setting the bar too high as well – there’s been so much that is poor about our play this season that I feel there is only so much Warnock can do until January when he, hopefully, will get a chance to bring some of his own players in (although, I wouldn’t be surprised if the money we had to find to get Neil Warnock here will mean that he will be limited as to how much he can do in the next transfer window).
    Russell, I think we might see a change of captain as well and I agree that, on the face of it, Gunnarsson seems like a Warnock type player, but I think Lee Peltier may be a possible choice for the job, given what happened when Warnock was at Leeds.
    Barry, as mentioned earlier, I can’t see us challenging for the top six, I’ll be happy if Neil Warnock plays a major part in arresting the inexorable decline we’ve seen since we got promoted – if he can be a factor in changing attitudes on and off the pitch, we can start looking upwards again with a bit of realism as opposed to the pie in the sky stuff we’ve had since we were relegated.
    Lindsay, nice to hear from you again and, as Clive says, don’t worry about that nickname – I’m pretty certain that Colin Wanker has put in an appearance on here in one of my match pieces somewhere along the line!
    Dai, my main beef with Neil Warnock has been more to do with how his sides have played, both in terms of the type of football and the physical nature of much of it, than his behaviour, but I take your point. I’ve been watching a few Warnock videos since his appointment by City and came across this forty five minute documentary on him;-

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-vjItStmovU

    Now, I should say that if an expletive every other word isn’t for you, then it’s best you don’t bother with it, but, if you are okay with that, then it’s a fascinating watch and the part I think is really relevant to what you say is when the film concentrates on Warnock haranguing a linesman. If I had been that linesman, I’m sure I would eventually have ended up giving Sheffield United a dodgy decision just to try and shut him up for a while and, in the process, I’d be doing exactly what he was trying to get me to do. There’s another bit where he tells one of the subs to go and warm up by the linesman so he can keep on to him about an offside decision he’s just made – I’m sure it’s the sort of thing that goes on to an extent with all managers, but I bet Neil Warnock is better/worse at it than most!
    Mike, I broadly agree with everything you say, I say “broadly” because I’m not wholly convinced when it comes to Vincent Tan and yes men, but you’ve come close to how I feel when you say he may have learned something from the Trollope appointment. For two years and more, I’ve felt that every time we’ve looked for a new manager, we’ve been limited in the field of realistic contenders because Vincent Tan tended not to look outside a certain type who fell within his tightly defined list of “acceptable” candidates – I’d say this time Mr Tan has realised that he needed to cast the net wider.
    Interesting stuff about Gary O’Neil – I agree with you about him having more impact than Terry Burton, but I would add that I think Burton was a very good appointment and, going back to my reference to managers not attending Academy games earlier, he was was the only person I’ve seen in the City football management/coaching hierarchy who made a habit of showing up at Saturday morning Under 18 matches when the first team was at home later that day.
    Richard, as you can see above, I tend more towards your view of what our future holds than the one which has us a possible Play Off candidate this season.
    That’s amazing about Warnock and Aldershot – from memory, we lost that game 2-1 and I was going to say that Brian Attley scored his only goal for us that evening, but, on second thoughts, I believe it was in another defeat by the same score somewhere else that season – Port Vale?
    Didn’t that Chester team stuff Leeds in the League Cup shortly before we played there? Forget that, I’ve just checked and it was the season before, but based on my extensive research into that Chester side, I can tell everyone that Tony Loska will become Cardiff City manager in the not too distant future.

  13. Lindsay Davies says:

    Paul – I’m pretty certain that Aldershot game was a 2-1 defeat. I frequently use it as symbolising the bottom of the roller-coaster ride, citing a variation of one of Mr Max Boyce’s tropes – “I was EVEN there when…”. I seem to remember being rather touched that there were autumn leaves on the pitch. As you guys are probably aware, the Recreation Ground really is just off the High Street, and right in the local park.

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