Warnock: Second half gamble worked
Neil Warnock celebrated his 69th birthday with a terrific comeback victory over Norwich City on Friday evening.
City moved to within in a point of leaders Wolves, who travel to Birmingham City on Monday night.
And speaking to the press and media after the game, the manager cited a rare half-time grilling as having been essential.
“I shouldn’t have to go like that at half time – especially on my birthday,” said a jubilant Neil. “I’m not sure I’ve had to do it since I’ve been here, but we were so poor in the first half and something had to be done.
“In the end we made a couple of changes which is again something I don’t often do. But we took the gamble and it worked for us – we could have scored five or six in the end.
“I have to give Kevin Blackwell and Ronnie Jepson a pat on the back for the part they played at half time too. We had a chat about what needed changing and I thought they were fantastic.”
Marco Stiepermann’s strike just before the break but the Canaries in the ascendancy going in to the second 45 minutes.
“I felt the best we could hope for at half time was to get in at 0-0, but then they scored and it became even worse for us," the manager reflected. "We had to change things and then in the second half we showed what we’re all about.
“Maybe we were feeling a bit sorry for ourselves in the first half after one or two niggles and knocks in training. But then we were so much better after the break.”
And the Manager reserved some special praise for one of his star performers this season, Junior Hoilett, who registered his sixth of the season with a wonderful dipping shot to make it two one.
The Gaffer mused: “Wingers are supposed to be a bit lazy aren’t they? Not Junior – I just told him I don’t think I’ve ever seen somebody work so hard.
“I’m pleased for him. He’s got his confidence now and he deserved his goal.”
Happy Birthday, Gaffer.