Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

O'Neill Is Brains Behind the Cats' Revival

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

O'Neill Is Brains Behind the Cats' Revival

Article excerpt

Byline: Matt Leslie

INTELLIGENCE is the key to being a good manager - and Middlesbrough boss Tony Mowbray believes Martin O'Neill has it in abundance.

The Boro supremo will pit his wits against Sunderland manager O'Neill to resume a battle between the two which has taken the pair of them from Scotland to the West Midlands.

The record between the two when up against each other when in charge of Celtic and Aston Villa (O'Neill) and Hibernian and West Bromwich Albion (Mowbray) is in the current Cats boss' favour by four wins to one - with another fixture being drawn.

O'Neill's overall record in management speaks for itself, with his name regularly cropping up whenever a prestigious post becomes available.

One reason for his high standing in the game is the intelligent way in which he carries himself both in and out the dugout - a quality Mowbray feels is invaluable.

He said: "Martin is a very charming, intelligent man who knows how to get results.

"He never gets caught out saying the wrong thing. His calmness allows him to take the moral high ground. Intelligence is key in football management and he intelligent.

"He knows when to get his team to gamble and when to sit tight and when to press. He is very good at it.

"Hard work, drive, desire, passion, Sunderland will be full of those components.

"That is what he gets from all of his teams.

"He is a winner and his teams generally win, which is not a bad ingredient to have as a football boss."

Mowbray added: "We have come across each other a fair bit, Villa v West Brom, Celtic v Hibs, but I do not need to eulogise about Martin O'Neill - his career speaks for itself as do his achievements.

What he has done since going to Sunderland speaks for itself.

"We know his teams are hard to play against and will cause us plenty of problems but we hope to cause them one or two as well. …

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