Gaffer is a master at easing pressure on team – Hoilett
JUNIOR Hoilett has credited Neil Warnock’s man-management skills as a key factor in helping Cardiff City bounce back in the hunt for automatic promotion.
The Bluebirds put themselves ahead of rivals Fulham and back in the driving seat for that crucial second-place spot in the Championship with a dramatic late win over Norwich City at Carrow Road.
Kenneth Zohore made the breakthrough from the bench four minutes from time, before Hoilett himself made sure of the points with a brilliant volley deep into stoppage time.
The result brings a halt to what’s been a difficult recent run for the Bluebirds, who were on the end of gut-wrenching defeats at the hands of Aston Villa and champions-elect Wolves before their return to winning ways at Carrow Road.
Having seen his side overtaken by Fulham following a run of just one point form a possible nine ahead of the trip to Norfolk, Warnock admitted that picking his players back up and ready to fight again was the biggest task of the week.
He said on Friday: “I think it’s all upstairs really, personally. Nearly 100 per cent is upstairs.
“They know they’ve got ability because we’ve pushed them right to the limit, so it’s all about how you deal with that.
“I think that’s been my biggest job this week, dealing one-on-one with players and trying to lift people who are little bit down.
“It’s amazing that different people have different problems. I’ve got to be like a Marjorie Proops!”
But while he may joke about comparisons to one of Britain’s most famous agony aunts, the famed ‘Warnock effect’ is, according to Hoilett, very, very real.
“We were unlucky against Wolves and Aston Villa,” Hoilett said.
“It was disappointing to lose two on the bounce but everyone stayed positive. We’ve been through a lot this season and the team have stuck together.
“We’re like a family. “Everybody supports one another so we just stay positive and you can see that from our shift.
“The gaffer has been positive, relaxed and relieved tension from the players and staff.
“He’s been great.
“To be where we are today is a massive bonus compared to where we were at this stage last season.”
Despite being by far one of Cardiff’s best performers this season, the Canadian’s strike on Saturday was his first since February, and he admits he could do with adding more goals to his game.
“I’ve been playing well and been contributing either with assists or a good shift,” he added.
“I’ve no idea how it took me twelve games to score but I’ll take that as a bonus and look forward to the next game.”