Neil Warnock has revealed that a last-minute phone call with Steve Gibson was key in completing the signing of Neeskens Kebano.
Middlesbrough completed a move for the Fulham man in the final moments of the January transfer window after signing the midfielder on a loan deal until the end of the season.
The 28-year-old has struggled for gametime at Craven Cottage this term but is undoubtedly a top talent at Championship level.
Warnock admitted that he had tried to sign the player earlier in the January transfer window, and speaking ahead of the Brentford clash, he couldn’t hide his delight at the team effort that led to the midfielder’s arrival.
Discussing the move for Kebano, Warnock told the Hartlepool Mail: “I’m definitely happier with the squad now, We talked about it all the time with Steve.
“I had to call Steve up on Monday night when the Neeskens thing came up at half nine because I’d already got Mendez and Yannick then. Straight away, Steve said, ‘Yes, go on then’.
“That’s the support that I’ve got. He knows that when you were looking behind and looking at the bench, no disrespect to the bench, but it hasn’t been a bench where you could put players on to win a game. Whereas I do now. I think you could change a game now at the drop of a hat.”
Asked if Kebano was one of the players he’d previously missed out on, Warnock said: “Yeah I was told the manager wouldn’t let him go so I was delighted.
“It was accidental really, Alaster from Fulham rang me from thin air and the owner was on the phone, we just switched on one of these Zoom things in America and I had five minutes with him.
“After that five minutes he agreed to my request and I was delighted.
“We managed to do it in the office with Karen and Laura, how they got it done in an hour and a half was unbelievable.
“That was just for one player, the amount of paperwork you have to do so all credit to them.”
Assombalonga? Saville? – Can you name which Middlesbrough player scored each these 15 goals this season?
It’s no surprise that Neil Warnock is thrilled by the signing of Neeskens Kebano.
To bring in the Fulham man is a real coup for Middlesbrough and the hope is that he’ll be able to make a big impact between now and the end of the season.
If he does hit the ground running then there’s every chance that he could be the difference in helping the Teessiders to secure a top six finish.