Neil Warnock on Simon Grayson, past Sunderland links and Cardiff City clash

Neil Warnock says Simon Grayson faces a big challenge getting his squad to adjust to the Championship, but has backed him to get it right in time.

Friday, 22nd September 2017, 11:27 am
Updated Friday, 22nd September 2017, 11:30 am
Warnock says Grayson will 'crack it' at Sunderland

Warnock, who has managed 17 clubs in a 26 year career, has been linked with the Black Cats post on numerous occasions in his career.

He says, however, that he was never in the running to take over from David Moyes this summer.

The 68-year-old is backing fellow Yorkshireman Grayson to make a big impact on Wearside.

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"Simon Grayson did such a good job at Preston and Leeds," he told WalesOnline."You can’t change what’s there as quickly as you like after you come down from the Premier League. I found that here at Cardiff. It is so difficult to get rid of players given the money they are on. They don’t want to go. In my day you wanted to go to play football, but nowadays they don’t want to go unless they get paid up. It’s the way that the morals are now.

"That makes it difficult. Simon will crack that. I’ve listened to some of the fans up there and while they aren’t happy with things, they still think he’s the right man. You can’t keep changing managers and he knows what he’s doing at Championship level. Some of their previous managers wouldn’t have managed in the Championship before like him. I have no doubt that he will crack it and that the fans will stick with him."

Cardiff are third in the table after a superb start to the season, but Warnock has warned his side that they could face a repeat of their one defeat thus far, a 3-0 drubbing against Preston, if they are complacent.

"If they get an early goal then we could be in for another Preston," he said.

"It is whether their players can click. In our last few games the visiting goalkeepers have played very, very well. We would have had a number of goals if it hadn’t been for some great saves. We will be looking to go and have a go at them. I think it will be two teams having a go."

Warnock was one of many names linked with the Sunderland job over the summer but says he was never tempted to leave his Cardiff project.

He said: "It’s one of the few clubs I've spoken over the last few years - they have the right colours!"

"You don’t get the opportunity so you move onto something better. I’m a big believer in fate and I think fate brought me here. Fans got on my back here before but always respectful Welsh banter.

"I was linked this summer but it wasn’t anything really, because I always had my heart here.

"I work for people me and Mehmet [Dalman] is as good I’ve ever had as a chairman I’ve worked for. I trust him 100% and when you trust a chairman like that it’s fabulous. It’s a good relationship that brings the best out of me. I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for him. It’s probably disrespectful but I look at him like a father figure! Sometimes I say things a little rash but he can calm it down, looks at it from the outside and comes back with the answer and he’s usually right.

"At my age you might think you know everything, but you don’t. You need support and someone with the answers and he’s been a blessing in disguise for me."