Luton chief not sure his heart would survive getting close to Warnock's milestone

Town boss hails achievements of 'legendary' Boro boss

By Mike Simmonds
Wednesday, 3rd November 2021, 9:41 am
Updated Wednesday, 3rd November 2021, 9:42 am
Hatters boss Nathan Jones celebrates beating Middlesbrough at Kenilworth Road
Hatters boss Nathan Jones celebrates beating Middlesbrough at Kenilworth Road

Hatters boss Nathan Jones didn’t think either his heart or his marriage would survive achieving the kind of longevity in the managerial game that last night's opposite number Neil Warnock has done.

The Middlesbrough chief set a new record at Kenilworth Road yesterday evening, taking charge of his 1,602nd English Football League game, overtaking former Crewe manager Dario Gradi in the process.

It looked like he might notch up another victory too when Josh Coburn opened the scoring in the first half, sliding home after a quickfire break by the visitors.

However, Luton went on to spoil his evening, netting three times in just five second half minutes, with Sonny Bradley, Elijah Adebayo and Harry Cornick all on target to seal a 3-1 triumph.

Jones, who is now up to 285 matches himself, said on putting one over the 72-year-old, who had never lost against Luton in six previous league meetings, spanning way back to when he was at Notts County in 1991: “Would he have done the same for me?

“We played Middlesbrough twice last year, missed two penalties, so I think we've done enough for him.

“You only have respect for him though.

“If you get to 100 games you've been a decent manager, if you get to 1,000 games, you've been a legendary manager, if you get to 1,602, you have to do something very, very well.

“He started in an era where it was tough, some real good characters, your Harry Redknapps when they started, he's come through that and football evolves, so he's had to evolve as well.

“Fair play, he's had a wonderful, wonderful career, you look back in awe and say that's the career you want to carve out, as if you take 1,600 games, then you've done something right.

“I’m not sure my heart could take 1,600 games, genuinely.

"It’s a different era now, but one thing is you play a lot of games now, so you can rack up things.

"I’m not far off 300, so I’ve got a hell of a long time to go, but I’m not sure my marriage or my heart would actually survive 1,600 if I’m honest.

"It’s a fantastic achievement, anyone who gets to 1,000 games has done something phenomenal, and anyone who gets that level of games has gone above and beyond.”