Neil Warnock once started a right-back after the idea came to his wife in a dream, and was rewarded with a perfect hat trick.
talkSPORT host Darren Ambrose has recalled the amazing story of his days at Crystal Palace that will go down in folklore, with defender Danny Butterfield managing just 14 goals in his 569-game career.
Surprisingly though, 21% of his career efforts have come in a single game thanks to Warnock’s incredible call at Selhurst Park, earning a 3-1 win over Wolves in the FA Cup.
Ambrose played all 90 minutes that day and, despite an absolutely bewildered start to the game at his manager’s decision, he was also stunned to see it paying off.
Discussing Warnock on talkSPORT Breakfast, Ambrose said: “Other than Sir Bobby he was my favorite manager, honestly such a great guy.
“I was known as the son of [Warnock] I have many stories. Him cutting my nails… he was a qualified podiatrist!
But, delving into his favorite anecdote, Ambrose said: “We got a draw at Wolves and he came in and said, ‘My wife Sharon, she had a dream last night’, nobody really laughed because that was how he was. .
“He said, ‘She dreamed my right-back scored the winning goal today’, so he said, ‘Danny Butterfield, you’re playing in front’.
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“He wasn’t even the right-back back then, he was a fringe player because Nathaniel Clyne was playing.
“We all started laughing at that point and he was like, ‘No, I’m serious.’ I was kicking off with him and looking at the bench thinking, ‘Gaffer is this a joke? Put it back to the right back”.
“I think about 12 minutes later he had a perfect hat-trick, Butterfield. We won 3-1. Left foot, right foot, head – every team speaks after all the fringe players say: ‘Did Gaffer have a dream on Sharon last night? Am I in the team, will I score?’
“The guy was crazy. Old school. If it rained he would bring his umbrella and pull me aside, still the Gaffer’s son.
However, it seems that rather than Warnock being angry, his wife apparently had a creepy gift, as it turns out that wasn’t the only time his dreams came true on the football pitch.
Former Millwall and Sheffield United winger Paul Ifill has also contacted talkSPORT to find out when the same thing happened in Warnock’s reign at Bramall Lane on the eve of the Sheffield derby against Wednesday, no less .
This is quite the step to take another chance at your wife’s apparent clairvoyance but, again, it worked.
“He’s been telling people about his wife’s dreams for years,” he wrote on Twitter.
“He once let me down because of his dream the day before the Sheffield derby, he replaced me with Alan Quinn who scored the only goal!”
He added: “I was fuming. I was going to go on Monday to moan, but his wife had understood!
“I just had to eat my fucking sandwich!”
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