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Football

Neil Warnock would pick team based on his wife's dreams... and it actually worked

Jack Kenmare

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Neil Warnock would pick team based on his wife's dreams... and it actually worked

A number of players who played under Neil Warnock have recently revealed that he would sometimes make a decision based on his wife's dreams.

Darren Ambrose and Paul Ifill, who played at Crystal Palace and Sheffield United with Warnock in charge, have opened up about their incredible stories in recent days.

It all began when former Palace midfielder Ambrose, who made over 100 appearances for the Eagles, recalled his shock of finding out that defender Danny Butterfield would start upfront in a 2010 FA Cup game against Wolves.

Image credit: PA
Image credit: PA

Butterfield, who only managed 14 goals in his 569-game career, remarkably netted a six-minute 'perfect' hat-trick that day, with Sharon Warnock's dream playing a key role in the 3-1 win at Selhurst Park.

Looking back, an incredible 21 percent of Butterfield's career goals were scored against Wolves that day.

Yes, they may have just lost young forward Victor Moses on transfer deadline day but Warnock's surprising decision to play the reliable full-back worked a treat. Check out Paul Merson's reaction to the action below. Priceless.

Years later and Darren Ambrose, who played the full 90 minutes against Wolves, spoke about former boss Warnock and his decision to play Butterfield in a recent chat with talkSPORT. This is quality.

He began: "Apart from Sir Bobby, he was my favourite manager, honestly, such a great guy.

“I was known as the son of [Warnock] I’ve got many stories. Him cutting my toenails… he was a qualified chiropodist!

"We also got a draw away at Wolves and he came in and said, ‘My wife Sharon, she had a dream last night,’ no one really laughed because that was what he was like.

“He said, ‘She dreamt that my right-back scores the winning goal today’, So he said, ‘Danny Butterfield, you’re playing up front’.

“He wasn’t even the right-back at the time, he was a fringe player because Nathaniel Clyne was playing.

“We all started laughing then and he was like, ‘No I’m being serious’. I was taking kick-off with him and I was looking over to the bench thinking, ‘Gaffer is this a joke? Put him back to right-back’.

“I think about 12 minutes later he had a perfect hat-trick, Butterfield. We won 3-1. Left foot, right foot, header – every team talk after that all the fringe players were saying, ‘Gaffer has Sharon had a dream last night? Am I in the team, am I going to score?’

“The guy was insane. Old school. If it was raining he’d bring his umbrella in and pull me aside, always the Gaffer’s son.”

Shortly after Ambrose's appearance on the radio, former Sheffield United man Paul Ifill revealed his own Warnock-related tale involving Sharon's dreams.

"I've been telling people about his wife’s dreams for years!" Ifill wrote on Twitter. "He once dropped me because of her dream the night before the Sheffield derby. He replaced me with Alan Quinn who scored the only goal! Madness."

Ifill added: "I was fuming and was gonna go in on the Monday to have a moan up but his missus had nailed it! I just had to eat my shit sandwich!"

Never change, Neil.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy/talkSPORT

Topics: Neil Warnock, Sheffield United, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Crystal Palace, Football, Premier League, FA Cup

Jack Kenmare
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