Simon Jordan has tipped Neil Warnock to save Middlesbrough from relegation after the veteran tactician replaced Jonathan Woodgate at Riverside, speaking to Jim White on talkSPORT (23 June, 10am).
After leaving Cardiff City in the autumn, Warnock said that he would be giving up his whiteboard and his whistle after 40 years in coaching.
But a man who has come out of retirement more times than John McClane has made another dramatic return to English football, replacing a man 31 years his junior at Middlesbrough.
Woodgate bit the bullet after a 3-0 trouncing at home to Swansea which has Boro staring down the barrel of relegation.
But, as Warnock’s former Crystal Palace boss Jordan points out, there are few better firefighters in English football than a man who has been tasked with guiding Boro away from the mire.
“The Middlesbrough situation has been brewing for some time. Woodgate is a very capable young manager who was learning his trade at a difficult time for Middlesbrough. I don’t think its worked out,” Jordan says after speaking on the phone to Warnock once his appointment was confirmed.
“Neil is a very good friend of mind and a brilliant manager. They need some stabilising and he’ll work really well with (Boro owner) Steve Gibson. He is his sort of chairman.
“Neil will go in there and do what he does – he will get them facing in the right direction.
“Look at what he did at Rotherham, he galvanises teams. Look what he did at Cardiff, Palace at Sheffield United.”
When Warnock was given the reigns at the New York Stadium in February 2016, Rotherham were three points adrift of safety and stuck in the Championship relegation zone. By the end of May, the Millers were nine points clear of the drop.
If Warnock can work similar wonders in the north east, Middlesbrough will be a Championship team next season.