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Kirk Broadfoot expects his former Rotherham manager Neil Warnock to be a success at Aberdeen

The experienced defender played under Warnock as Rotherham escaped the drop from the Championship in stunning fashion in 2016.

Aberdeen interim manager Neil Warnock.
Aberdeen interim manager Neil Warnock. Image: SNS

Kirk Broadfoot praised Aberdeen for appointing his former boss Neil Warnock – and expects him to be a success at Pittodrie.

The 39-year-old Morton centre-half has played for, among others, St Mirren, Rangers, Blackpool, Kilmarnock and Inverness.

His four-year spell at Rotherham was memorable in 2015-2016 in particular when the then Championship club – against all the odds – survived the drop thanks to a 16-match and three-month stint with Warnock in charge.

The 75-year-old replaced Barry Robson as the Dons manager on Monday as interim manager as the inconsistent side aim to turn around their season by pushing up from the bottom half of the Premiership – and having a go at the Scottish Cup.

Managerial legend Warnock, in his first role within Scottish football, says winning the cup and taking the team as high up the league as possible are his twin goals.

Kirk Broadfoot, who has praised the appointment of Aberdeen interim manager Neil Warnock
Kirk Broadfoot helped Inverness reach the Premiership play-off final two years ago. Image: SNS

Dons supporters ‘will really like him’

Ex-Scotland international Broadfoot has no doubt he’ll get a positive reaction from the Aberdeen squad – and the Reds supporters.

He said: “He will get all the boys together and make them believe the world is against them.

“On paper, Aberdeen have a good squad. They maybe, at this time, just need someone with Neil’s experience to drive them on.

“He’ll actually take pressure off the players. Because of his high-profile and who is he, much of the limelight will go on to him. That will help the players.

“It will also help the club, because there will be big interest from down south and beyond.

“The Aberdeen fans will really like him. They will have a team on the pitch giving 100%. If you don’t give 100% for him, you won’t play for him and it doesn’t matter who you are.”

‘We got into a roll’ at Rotherham

Broadfoot reflected on a remarkable end to that season at the Millers when Rotherham, super-charged by Warnock, pulled off the great escape.

He said: “I have nothing but good things to say about Neil. We got on really well and I think he liked the way I was a no-nonsense player who put my head in where it hurts. He likes his defenders to do that.

“When he arrived at Rotherham, he got us going. I think he came in for the last 16 games and we went 11 unbeaten on the bounce, beating five of the top six.

“We got into a roll, like beating Middlesbrough at home, who were flying at the top of the league. No one wanted to play us. I can see that happening at Aberdeen.

“We were away – I genuinely believe Rotherham would have been relegated that season if it wasn’t for Neil.

“I liked him. You always knew where you stood with him. Everyone knew their jobs. If you didn’t do your job, he’d certainly make sure he told you.

“While he gave me a rough time at Rotherham, he always knew what he was getting from me and he thanked me for it.

“I think if he had got another job that summer he would have taken me with him.”

Neil Warnock targets Scottish Cup glory and Premiership ascent during short-term Aberdeen stint

Warnock ‘will get Aberdeen going’

And Broadfoot believes a push for a European place is not impossible under Warnock, with the top-six right now within striking range.

He added: “Neil will be good for Scottish football. He’s a character, who will be a breath of fresh air. Everyone will like him.

“He seems the right fit for Aberdeen and I would not be surprised if he gets them going now and takes them into the top six and, who knows, they might sneak into a European place.

“With his vast experience, he’s someone Aberdeen need right now.

“And I can tell you, Aberdeen won’t be a nice place to go (as a visiting team). He will have them going really well.”

Morton v Aberdeen dream cup draw

Warnock, who owns a holiday home in Dunoon, is a fan of Greenock Morton.

The Cappielow club, who have roared into the top four in the Championship thanks to a 12-match unbeaten run under Dougie Imrie, host Motherwell in the Scottish Cup this Friday night, a game which will be live on BBC Scotland.

With Aberdeen entertaining League Two visitors Bonnyrigg Rose on Saturday, the experience centre-half would knows the dream draw he would want in the last-eight.

He said: “It would actually be nice if we could win our Scottish Cup tie and Aberdeen win theirs and we meet them – a home draw against Neil Warnock’s Aberdeen team would be nice for everyone.

“While I’ve not seen Neil at Cappielow, he texted the gaffer the other week when he got a new deal and he congratulated him on that and said ‘tell the big man I was asking for him’, referring to me.”