Brian Clough: 10 years gone today but here are some reasons why we will always love him 8 years ago

Brian Clough: 10 years gone today but here are some reasons why we will always love him

10 years gone but never forgotten...

Before Ferguson or Mourinho established themselves as the leading managerial personalities in English football there was one man who reigned supreme.


It's unlikely that the football world will ever see another Brian Clough. 'Old Big Head' was blessed with charisma and a God-like managerial talent that saw him take Derby County and Nottingham Forest to the top of English football. His assistant Peter Taylor also played a vital role in both clubs' successes.

At the City Ground they performed a feat that will never be seen again, winning consecutive European Cups, which meant that Forest became the first side to win Europe's biggest trophy more times than their own domestic title. His team also went 42 league games unbeaten, which was a record that survived up until the Arsenal Invincibles team.

Here are some of the great man's best quotes and interviews from over the years.

On his own genius


“Rome wasn’t built in a day, but then again I wasn’t on that particular job.”

His career as a player

He scored 251 league goals from 274 starts with Middlesbrough and Sunderland. Clough was also capped by England twice before injury cruelly cut short his playing career.

Brian Clough Sunderland playing days


This clip from Muhammad Ali

What he did as manager at Derby County

In 1969 he won promotion with Derby County to the First Division and within three years he won the title. Incredible.


His football philosophy

“If God had wanted us to play football in the clouds, he’d have put grass up there.”

How he motivated players

Any regrets?


“Telling the entire world and his dog how good a manager I was. I knew I was the best but I should have said nowt and kept the pressure off ‘cos they’d have worked it out for themselves.”

On Martin O’Neill’s success at Leicester City

“Anybody who can do anything in Leicester other than knit a jumper has got to be a genius. If he’d been English or Swedish, he’d have walked the England job.”

O'Neill's sheer love for the man

Telling Martin O'Neill he was dropped to the reserves

“Because you’re too good for the first team.”

His relationship with Roy Keane

"I only ever hit [him] the once. He got up so I couldn't have hit him very hard"

Keane still idolises the man

What he did as manager of Nottingham Forrest in the league

In 1977, Forest were promoted to the top flight and the following season won the league title.

His European record at Forrest

Two consecutive European Cups (in 1979 and 1980)

Brian Clough Forrest

This brilliant story from Clive Tyldesley

His thoughts on Manchester United dropping out of the FA Cup in 1999

“United in Brazil? I hope they all get bloody diarrhea.”

These views on beauty

“The ugliest player I ever signed was Kenny Burns.”

What's the best thing he ever did?

"Meeting my wife Barbara was the best thing I ever did."

This ill-fated piece of punditry on Mick McCarthy before Euro '88...

...and Polish keeper Jan Tomaszewski

On Eric Cantona’s infamous kung-fu kick at Selhurst Park

“I’d have cut his balls off.”

Regarding his own genius

“The River Trent is lovely, I know because I have walked on it for 18 years.”

The best piece of TV that you'll ever see following his sacking by Leeds

This reaction to Stuart Pearce getting concussion

“Tell him he’s Pele and that he’s playing up front for the last 10 minutes.”

On his idols

“Ah yes, Frank Sinatra. He met me once y’know?”

After his liver transplant

“Don’t send me flowers when I’m dead. If you like me, send them while I’m alive."

The passion never diminished

On his legacy

“I want no epitaphs of profound history and all that type of thing. I contributed. I would hope they would say that, and I would hope somebody liked me.”

How he views his managerial talent 

“I wouldn’t say I was the best manager in the business…but I was in the top one.”

Brian Clough Tribute

This interview with David Frost after leaving Leeds

How he views God

“When I go, God’s going to have to give up his favourite chair.”

A statue in Nottingham

Clough Statue

Image via - Flickr

This lovely tribute from the BBC