Stickied Middlesbrough: What Can be Achieved Under Neil Warnock

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Middlesbrough: What Can be Achieved Under Neil Warnock

On June 23rd 2020, former Cardiff City manager, Neil Warnock, was announced as the new Middlesbrough manager following the sacking of Jonathan Woodgate. The 71-year-old manager had been out of work following his decision to walk away from the Cardiff City Stadium in November 2019. Following his appointment, Warnock has labelled his decision to take over at Boro as a “no-brainer”. So, let’s consider what the much-travelled manager can achieve at the Riverside Stadium.

Possessing the Qualities Needed at the Riverside

Throughout the English game, Warnock has developed a reputation for being a promotion-winning manager who sets his side up in a manner that is hard to beat. Including caretaker roles, the Sheffield-born coach has managed a total of 18 clubs, with Boro being his latest. According to a report by The Guardian, Steve Gibson, the owner of Middlesbrough, is both a longstanding friend and admirer of Warnock.


Fundamentally, there can be no doubts that change was needed at Riverside with Woodgate losing 3-0 in his final match at home to Swansea. Despite only signing an eight-game deal, which will see Warnock conclude the 2019-20 season as the Boro manager, he’s believed to be keeping an open mind on his managerial future. Crucially, few can argue that the 71-year-old doesn't have the credentials needed to get the 2004 League Cup winners back on track.



Encouragingly, the early signs appear positive under Warnock, with the club taking a big step in seeking to achieve their objective of avoiding relegation from the Championship. In beating Stoke City 2-0, Warnock was the first manager to win his first game in charge of Boro since Bryan Robson in 1994. The goals from Ashley Fletcher and Marcus Tavernier have moved the North Yorkshire club to 7/1 to be relegated in the Championship betting come the end of the 2019-20 campaign, as of June 30th.

What Could a Long-Term Future Hold?

Although a long-term approach seemingly isn’t set in stone in relation to Warnock’s future at the Riverside Stadium, supporters will be hoping that the 71-year-old does envisage a season-long spell in North Yorkshire. Crucially, since turning to management, the former winger has the most decorated CV in English football when looking at promotions.


To date, the 71-year-old holds the record for the most promotions in English football, having secured this achievement on eight different occasions. Although, at the time of writing, Boro are faced with a relegation battle, there’s undoubtedly a sense of optimism that, should he stay, the club founded in 1876 could turn their attention to promotion to the top flight.


It’s a testament to Warnock’s managerial abilities that he was able to guide Cardiff to automatic promotion in just his second full season in charge of the Bluebirds back in 2018. Although, of course, nothing is guaranteed in football, particularly in the ever-competitive Championship, there are no doubts that Warnock arrives at Boro with a reputation for making supporters promotion dreams a reality.



A Proven Appointment

Ultimately, in giving the 71-year-old the job on a short-term basis, Boro have taken a sensible approach following the failure surrounding their gamble on Woodgate. While avoiding relegation is of utmost importance in the closing stages of the season, Warnock brings with him a sense of optimism that, should he stay, anything is possible at the Riverside Stadium.

 

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