ARCHIVE NEWS 2008
Special signing sessions have been held to promote a popular new tribute book about the Master Manager. Author Marcus Alton has been signing copies of 'Young Man, You've Made My Day,' which has a foreword written by Brian's widow, Barbara.
The book describes how one fan’s admiration for his hero led to lasting tributes, on-line and in bronze, for the Master Manager. It includes the full story behind the Cloughie statue recently unveiled in Nottingham city centre.
Cloughie's European Cup winning captain John McGovern has been signing copies of the book. McGovern joined Marcus at the Nottingham Forest club shop.
Said John: "There's no doubt the statue is a superb tribute to
Brian Clough and it was fantastic to be there in November to see it unveiled in
front of thousands of people in Nottingham city centre. I'm very pleased to
support this tribute book which describes how the statue came about and is also
raising money for the Brian Clough Memorial Fund. I'm sure the book will be a
popular stocking filler this Christmas."
The book costs just £7.99 and is available to buy in shops and on-line. Marcus also signed copies of the book at MSR Newsagents in the Broadmarsh Centre in Nottingham on Saturday, December 20th. There are more details about the book HERE.
Brian Clough's widow Barbara has praised a special tribute book about the Master Manager. Mrs Clough and her family were among the special guests at the official launch of the book entitled 'Young Man, You've Made My Day.' European Cup legends Martin O'Neill, John Robertson and Garry Birtles also attended the event at the Council House in Nottingham (December, 2008).
The book has been written by the editor of this website, Marcus Alton, with a foreword by Mrs Clough. It tells the inside story behind the campaign for a statue in Nottingham and describes the times Marcus met the Great Man. It also explains the inspiration behind this website and the worldwide campaign for a knighthood.
The book contains exclusive photo's of the statue during its production and reveals how the statue fund nearly failed less than two weeks before the planned launch. In the foreword, Mrs Clough describes the book as an inspirational story. It was published on December 8th, 2008, and is available to buy on-line and in shops. More details HERE. Marcus' proceeds from the book are going to the Brian Clough Memorial Fund. Martin O'Neill said he was delighted to receive a copy of the tribute book.
Martin O'Neill & Marcus Alton
Said O'Neill: "It was fantastic that fans raised the money for the
statue and I'm thrilled to receive a copy of the book. There is no doubt that
Brian Clough was the most charistmatic manager there has ever been." Mrs
Clough was also presented with a special copy of the book, as were John
Robertson and Garry Birtles.
Cloughie proved to be the inspiration behind the first Premier League win of the season for a women's football team. The manager of Nottingham Forest Ladies, Lisa Dawkins, decided to wear her green tribute sweatshirt during the match against Fulham and guided the Reds to a 3-1 win (November, 2008). Lisa had bought the green jumper from Nottingham's statue fund, during fund-raising for the bronze sculpture in the city. Said Lisa: "He will always be my inspiration and we play the Brian Clough way!"
Former Cloughie player Garry Birtles has praised the volunteers who raised £70,000 for the statue of the Master Manager in Nottingham city centre. The bronze figure was unveiled by Brian's widow, Barbara, in front of a crowd of more than five-thousand people. Writing his regular column in the Nottingham Evening Post, Birtles described it as a fantastic turn-out for a fitting tribute.
He said: "It cannot be underestimated the impact the man had, not only locally but also globally. You can still go abroad now and say you are from Nottingham and people mention two names - Robin Hood and Brian Clough, which says everything. The fans who raised the money for this can be proud." There is a report on the event, with special photo's HERE.
Thousands of people turned-out to see Nottingham's Brian Clough statue unveiled by his widow Barbara. "The statue is absolutely incredible," Mrs Clough told this website after the ceremony near Old Market Square. The nine-feet high bronze sculpture (above) stands at the junction of King Street and Queen Street. Many of Cloughie's former players attended the unveiling, including a number of European Cup winners.
Viv Anderson said he was very impressed with the statue: "It's a remarkable day for the players and supporters. It's a great tribute to him." Kenny Burns said: "It looks very much like him. But I never saw him as quiet as this!" Tony Woodcock added: "As a Nottingham boy, born and bred, I think it is a fantastic tribute in the city centre." Cloughie's captain John McGovern said: "It's a very fitting tribute. They have got the image absolutely right." See more photo's and watch a video of the unveiling by visiting the Statue Page. There is a report on the event, with special photo's HERE.
The Great Man's eldest son, Simon, has paid tribute to all those who made the statue fund such a success. "As a family we cannot say enough about those who came up with the idea in the first place and then set about the task of raising so much money for the statue," he said.
Simon paid special tribute to the editor of this website and the statue fund committee, as well as everyone who contributed to the project. Mrs Clough has also given a special interview to mark the unveiling. There's more about Simon's comments and Mrs Clough's interview HERE. There are exclusive photo's of the statue arriving HERE.
Nottingham's Cloughie statue was carefully lowered into place, ahead of the official unveiling at 1pm on Thursday, November 6th, 2008. The nine-feet high bronze figure arrived early on Sunday, November 2nd, and was lifted by a crane after being transported from a foundry in London by lorry.
On the same day that the statue was installed, it was also revealed that some of Cloughie's famous quotes have been engraved into the new granite paving surrounding the impressive plinth. The quotes are top three voted in an on-line poll through this website. This exclusive photo shows the statue, partly protected by plastic, being put into place.
Two of the Master Manager's former teams competed for the Brian Clough Trophy for the second time, when they met at Pride Park on Sunday, November 2nd, 2008. The trophy is the prize every time Derby County and Nottingham Forest play each other. The Rams retained the trophy after a 1-1 draw in the Championship match. Read more about the first trophy match HERE.
A former Cloughie player has described how inspiration from the Master Manager brought success to his team in Scotland. Jim McInally is the boss of East Stirlingshire, who turned round a 2-1 deficit by scoring three goals in the final 20 minutes to beat Preston Athletic 4-2 (October, 2008).
McInally, who played for Cloughie at Forest in the Eighties, said it wasn't a telling-off that got the best out of his players. Instead he thought back to his teenage years under Cloughie. "When things aren't going your way, you need people to encourage you rather than get on at you," he told the Falkirk Herald.
"When you are down and struggling with your game you need someone to pick you up and, in all my years in football, the greatest man ever for that was Brian Clough. When you were having a bad game he would find something positive to lift you and encourage you. I see a lot of people slaughtering each other when things aren't going well, not just at this club but across football, and I don't think there's a place for that in the game.
"That was the biggest message to them at half-time. I told them they had to stick by each other, because if they did that then I was sure they would get the right result."
The statue of Cloughie to be unveiled in Nottingham next month has been given the total approval of the person who knew him best – his wife Barbara. Mrs Clough will perform the ceremony on Thursday, November 6th, near Old Market Square where the lasting tribute will stand. Mrs Clough will do so happy in the knowledge that the sculpture of her husband is "just perfect."
Barbara visited the studio of world-renowned sculptor Les Johnson to see the nine-foot high clay figure as the final touches were made. Mrs Clough was delighted with the work: "My daughter Elizabeth and I travelled down to Hampshire to see Les and the statue and we just looked at each other and said 'It's perfection.' It took our breath away. Les has done a marvellous job and captured Brian's personality so remarkably well."
There are exclusive quotes and more information about the statue HERE.
Getting It Right
There's more information about a forthcoming television documentary about the Master Manager. This website originally reported news about the programme several weeks ago, when the producers were appealing for fans to help with home-made archive footage of Cloughie's glory years at Forest (see below). ITV are behind the project.
Reporting in the Daily Mail (October, 2008), Charles Sale says the major documentary will portray a vastly different image of Cloughie than the big screen version that is due out around the same time next spring. The cinema version is based on the controversial book The Damned United which has been criticised by Brian's widow Barbara for the way it portrays her husband. The book is a novel, but written as if it's fact.
Sale says: "ITV have the advantage of many hours of archive material of the real, confident Clough, who did almost all his TV work with them." He adds the producers are in discussions with Clough's family. Thankfully, the documentary will give the Master Manager's friends and family the opportunity to set the record straight.
Hall Of Fame
Cloughie has been officially included in the National Football Museum's European Hall of Fame. He was one of five British managers to be inducted at a special event (October, 2008). His son Nigel received an award on his father's behalf and described it as a huge honour.
Speaking at the dinner in Liverpool, Nigel told this website's editor that his father would have been extremely proud. "He would have loved to have been here in such company, with so many people who he had an immense amount of respect for in his business. I think pretty much everyone who's anyone in European football in the last 30 years is here. A lot of people he competed against and a lot of them he supported over the years."
The guest of honour was Michel Platini, the president of European football's governing body, UEFA. He described Clough's record as a big achievement. Among the other managers inducted was the late Liverpool boss Bob Paisley. Nigel said his father often spoke with affection and admiration about Paisley.
Former Liverpool defender Phil Neal was among the guests and told this website that he was pleased both Clough and Paisley were being honoured (they were the only two managers out of five being inducted who had not received knighthoods - the others were Sir Alex Ferguson, Sir Bobby Robson and Sir Matt Busby).
On Clough's inclusion, Neal said: "It is justified in recognising Brian Clough for what he did for the national game let alone Nottingham Forest too." Cloughie's captain John McGovern said: "It's nice when the football world gets together and says this is true recognition from everyone." Although the football museum is in Preston, the event was in Liverpool because it's the 2008 European Capital of Culture.
Statue Date Confirmed
Nottingham's lasting tribute to Cloughie will be unveiled by his widow Barbara on Thursday November 6th, 2008, at 1pm. The bronze statue, which captures Brian's personality perfectly, will stand nine-feet high.
Said Mrs Clough: "The sculpture will be a fitting tribute and I am really looking forward to unveiling the bronze statue in Nottingham." She thanked everyone who had contributed to making it all possible, including the small group of volunteers who raised the money.
The statue is the work of world renowned sculptor Les Johnson. He has taken special care over re-creating Cloughie's facial features, to ensure they look just right. He told this website: "I’m proud to be involved in such a prestigious project as this. I have tried to capture that special character, that twinkle in the eye."
The money for the sculpture was raised by the Brian Clough Statue Fund. Volunteers smashed through their £60,000 in just 18 months. The statue will be near Old Market Square, where King Street meets Queen Street. There are more quotes, details about the unveiling, plus information on the statue HERE.
A Different Class
Former Cloughie player Colin Walsh has admitted he made one big mistake is his dealings with the Master Manager. Walsh spent eight years at Nottingham Forest during Cloughie's reign and described it as a "sheer privilege." He recalled: "Cloughie was a genius and the side he put together made the game look so easy." But Walsh confesses he made an error of judgement during contract talks.
"I was trying to negotiate a new contract and I mentioned the possibility of a signing on fee. Let's just say I wished I had never posed the question. But it was easy to understand why players wanted to play for him and why he got the best out of them. He was different class and playing for him - and Forest - will always mean something special to me." Walsh's comments were featured in the Reds' matchday programme on September 20th, 2008 - the fourth anniversary of Cloughie's death. Hey, we still miss you!
There's been a further call for a Cloughie statue in Derby. A senior councillor says he wants to hear from other fans who may be interested in having a statue erected in the city - following the success of fans in Nottingham who raised £70,000 in 18 months for a statue there.
Councillor Joe Naitta, the cabinet member responsible for leisure and culture at Derby City Council told the Derby Evening Telegraph (September, 2008): "I think it is only right that we should honour Brian Clough with a statue in Derby." Mr Naita said he had spoken to Derby County who have their own plans to name a square after Cloughie in the proposed Pride Plaza development. He hopes a statue could be put up at a roundabout approaching the ground.
In the same way fans had been involved in getting statues in Nottingham and Middlesbrough, Mr Naitta hopes the community in Derby will work together. "I would like the fans to be involved in as much of it as possible, from fund raising to choosing designs."
In Nottingham, a small group of volunteers set-up the Brian Clough Statue Fund and smashed through their fund-raising target in 18 months. The committee was put together by the editor of this website. Work on the statue is progressing well and it is expected to be unveiled in the city centre later this year. Fund-raisers in Middlesbrough also secured a statue of the Great Man in his home town.
The producers of a forthcoming television documentary about Cloughie are appealing to fans for help. They want to hear from any Forest supporters who may have filmed their own footage from the Seventies and Eighties - in particular the glory nights of the European Cup Finals in Munich and Madrid. Anyone who may be able to help can contact the producersHERE. (Archve Note: programme has now been broadcast).
Former Cloughie player Roy Keane has described the Master Manager as a genius. Keane was speaking as he took his Sunderland team to play Nottingham Forest in the Carling Cup. Said Keane: "I just feel very lucky, like other players who played under him, to have had that opportunity. He was a genius and he has still left his mark on the football club." (Metro, August 2008).
Many fans who went to the cup match between Cloughie's two former teams wore green in tribute to Old Big 'Ead. The Reds boss Colin Calderwood had urged supporters to remember the Master Manager, whose famous green sweatshirt became a regular fixture on the touchline.
"Anyone who holds Forest close to their hearts won't need telling about the contribution Brian made," said Calderwood. "I'm also aware of the massive impact he made as a Sunderland player and I want both sets of fans to honour him."
It was the second time the two sides had met within the space of two months. Before a friendly in July, Keane had described Cloughie as the best manager he had worked for.
Nottingham Forest's new striker Andrew Cole has revealed how Cloughie once tried to sign him. Cole was playing for Bristol City in 1993 when Forest made a bid for him. "I found out about it before a game we played on the Saturday," Cole told The Independent newspaper (August, 2008). But the bid was turned down and the Nottingham-born player signed for Newcastle.
Cole also said his grandfather was a big Cloughie fan. "My grandad was like Clough in some ways," says Cole. "When he spoke, everyone sat up and listened and those kind of things always stay with you. He liked Clough, too: the way he was; the fact he always spoke his mind." Cole says he made a promise to his grandfather, Vincent Lewis, that he would one day play for his hometown club.
The Number One
Former Cloughie player Roy Keane has named the Great Man as the best manager he worked for. Keane was speaking on his return to the City Ground, for a friendly between Forest and his new side Sunderland, where he is manager (July, 2008).
Keane told the Forest website that he was happy to go back to the club, which he left to join Alex Ferguson's Manchester United in 1993. "I've got great memories of my three years there. Brian Clough gave me a chance and that is something that you never forget," he said. "I don't know if I've picked up any of Brian Clough's traits but I just feel very lucky and honoured to have played under him. He was an absolute genius and when I look back at the managers I've played under, he's certainly number one. He was brilliant with me, great to my family and you never forget these things."
Two signed Cloughie books are the prizes in this website's latest competition. Duncan Hamilton has signed paperback copies of his award-winning book 'Provided You Don't Kiss Me.' Read more about the book HERE. (Archive Note: competition now closed).
Hall Of Fame
Officials at the National Football Museum have announced that Cloughie is to be included in a special European Hall of Fame. He's one of five managers to be inducted, including Sir Matt Busby, Sir Bobby Robson, Bob Paisley and Sir Alex Ferguson. The selection panel included Sir Tom Finney, Sir Trevor Brooking, Jimmy Greaves and Gary Lineker. A special ceremony will be held in Liverpool on October 8th, 2008.
The editor of this website, Marcus Alton, welcomed the news of Cloughie's inclusion: "This serves as a clear reminder of the Great Man's undoubted genius. The outstanding achievement of winning two consecutive European Cups failed to get the full recognition it deserved at the time, but this goes some way to acknowledging Cloughie's remarkable talent." Knighthood campaigner Mike Simpson added: "When you look at most of the other names inducted alongside Cloughie, it makes it even more puzzling as to why he didn't receive a knighthood."
I've Started So I'll Finish...
The life and career of Cloughie was the specialist subject of one of the contestants on BBC TV's Sport Mastermind series (July, 2008). Marketing manager Simon Gilbert scored eighteen points (and no passes) answering questions about the Master Manager. He scored thirty-two points in total after the second round of general sporting knowledge, finishing second overall.
On The Move
It's been claimed Cloughie would have moved the Football Association headquarters from London to South Yorkshire, if he'd become England manager. That revelation was described by the author Duncan Hamilton during a special evening to mark the publication of the paperback version of his award-winning book.
Duncan told an audience at the Broadway venue in Nottingham (June, 2008): "He would have had a hard time as England manager. He would have been great with the football side of things. He wanted to move the FA to South Yorkshire. He would have have had one enormous bust-up within the first six months of starting the job."
Duncan, who worked closely with Cloughie as a sports reporter, was in conversation with the playwright Stephen Lowe. The evening also featured fantastic archive film and TV footage. There's a full report and photo's HERE. Read more about the book HERE.
Following the media coverage of the forthcoming film 'The Damned United' - a fictional account of Cloughie's ill-fated forty-four days at Leeds United - it is timely to remind fans what has previously been said about the book upon which it is based and from which it takes its name.
Cloughie's widow Barbara has criticised the book, which is a fictional account but written as if it's the Master Manager's own words. It relies on imaginary thoughts and conversations. Mrs Clough was quoted last year as saying the book misrepresents her husband and portrays him as a thoroughly unpleasant man. "I have to feel strongly about something for me to make a comment about it so this goes to show how upset I am about this book," said Mrs Clough.
Last year, the Cloughs asked a family friend, the Derby-based TV and film writer Don Shaw, to raise their concerns. In a joint statement, Mr Shaw said: "Barbara Clough and I are together in condemning the portrayal of Brian in the book. He was considerate and civilised but with enormous self-confidence which made him a great manager. His small acts of generosity are well known among his friends and ex-players."
Also last year, the Derby Evening Telegraph reported that Cloughie's son Nigel is disappointed that the film will focus on the short time at Leeds. Like many fans, Nigel said such a project should reflect his father's thirty years in football management, including his successful years at Nottingham Forest and Derby County. Nigel told the paper: "It is a pity they have chosen to focus on that small period. If you spoke to the people of Derby or Nottingham about my father they wouldn't talk about those forty-four days at Leeds United. I bet a few people wouldn't have even heard of his time at Leeds."
True Clough fans feel the book doesn't do him any justice and ignores the amazing, unprecedented success the Great Man brought to two formerly small clubs. Fans who enjoyed the decades of success that he generated believe it is a huge shame that the film will live-off that distasteful and inaccurate book.
A hospice which Cloughie supported keenly is to benefit from a charity match between his former club Nottingham Forest and his son Nigel's Burton Albion. Gate money will go to the Treetops Hospice Ripple Appeal, which aims to raise money for a care centre. Cloughie was once quoted as saying, "Treetops does a brilliant job and deserves your support." The match will be held at Burton's Pirelli Stadium on Tuesday, July 22nd, 2008.
It's emerged that Cloughie's statue in Middlesbrough has sustained a mysterious injury to the same leg that ended his playing career. The bronze figure was erected last year in Albert Park. But officials have now noticed a serious fatigue fracture on its right leg, which mirrors the Great Man's ligament injury back in 1962.
Cloughie's sister, Doreen, said she hoped it could be repaired. "When the statue went up, we thought it would be there forever. It's strange that the damage is on the right leg, but I suppose the statue is more true to life." The 7ft statue has now been protected behind temporary fencing while an investigation into the extent and cause of the fracture is carried out.
One possible cause being considered by council officials is that the crack may have been due to children swinging on the leg. Councillor John McPartland, who chaired the fund-raising committee, said: "It's the same leg Cloughie injured in 1962. I think he might be telling us something from up in heaven." Read about the original unveiling ceremony HERE. Meanwhile, work on Nottingham's statue is continuing well and the bronze figure is due to be unveiled later this year.
Fact Not Fiction
The man who led the campaign to keep Cloughie at Derby County in the 1970's has revealed he is writing a book which will shed new light on the legend. In an exclusive interview with this website, the playwright Don Shaw described 'Clough's War' as an exciting project which he had been meaning to write for thirty years.
"I have read a lot of things about Brian Clough over the years, but I have a lot more to say," said Mr Shaw, who is a friend of the Clough family. The book will tell the story of the Great Man's epic rise and fall at Derby County, including his acrimonious resignation in 1973.
The book will also set the record straight over what he was really like, following the negative image portrayed in the dismal book 'The Damned United,' a fictional account of Cloughie's 44 days at Leeds United. Publishing Director at Ebury Press, Andrew Goodfellow, commented: "What David Peace speculated on, Don Shaw knows for real, because he was there as it happened."
Don Shaw added: "Brian Clough was a genius and a great man and I want to show the whole person. Yes, he could be very brutally outspoken, but he was also a caring, family man. He didn't use the obscenities that are in the Damned United, a book which paints Clough as a one-dimensional character." Don Shaw's book is due out in May 2009.
BBC commentator John Motson has described a book about Cloughie as one of the best football books he has ever read. Motty was commenting on the award-winning 'Provided You Don't Kiss Me' which has now been published in paperback. This latest edition has several features not included in the original hardback version.
Among the additions is a section where the author Duncan Hamilton reflects on the experience of writing the book and the twenty years spent working closely with Cloughie as a reporter. He goes on to recall meeting John Motson at a recording for BBC Radio Four. "John's respect and adoration for Brian was as tangible as my own," he says.
Duncan Hamilton will also be discussing his book at a special event in Nottingham on June 24th, 2008. He will be in conversation with playwright Stephen Lowe at the Broadway venue. The event, starting at 1800, will also include archive film footage and a book-signing. Read more about the book HERE.
Top British Boss
A leading football writer has named Cloughie as the best ever British manager. Jeff Powell chose Old Big 'Ead as the boss of his greatest British team - made up of players who have taken part in European Cup finals. Peter Shilton and Keny Burns, from Cloughie's double European Cup winning teams, were also included.
Powell's report in the Daily Mail marked the all-British Champions League Final in which Manchester United beat Chelsea (May, 2008). It remains to be seen if United's manager can match Cloughie's remarkable achievement of winning two consecutive European Cups. The Master Manager won the trophies despite scant resources at the City Ground, taking the Reds from the old Second Division to European glory.
One of the volunteers who helped to raise £70,000 for a Brian Clough statue in Nottingham is now planning his next charity challenge. Rich Fisher is getting behind the wheel for the Mongol Rally and hopes fans of one of Cloughie's former clubs will donate their Nottingham Forest shirts to take with him for Mongolian orphans. Rich, a member of the statue fund committee, said: "It was fantastic to be part of the group which raised money for the Cloughie statue and now I'm hoping Reds fans will get behind another good cause." Get in touch with Rich HERE
Fans now face the prospect of two matches competing for the Brian Clough Trophy next season, following Derby County's relegation from the Premiership and Nottingham Forest's promotion from League One (May, 2008). Both of Cloughie's former clubs will be playing in the Championship, with the trophy going to the winners when the two sides meet. The Rams are the current holders following the first trophy match, in July 2007, and will keep the cup if the next game ends in a draw. There's more about the trophy HERE.
Fit For a King
Work has started on repaving part of Nottingham city centre which will house the new Brian Clough statue. The area at the bottom of King Sreet will have the same high quality granite paving which was laid in the Old Market Square. It is hoped the paving scheme will be completed by September, with the statue installed later in the year. Fans raised £70,000 for the statue, which will be cast in bronze.
Praise Is Granted
A Premiership manager has praised Cloughie, describing him as a 'great man.' Chelsea boss Avram Grant recalled his time visiting Forest's City Ground during the Master Manager's European glory days. "I arrived on the Monday and Clough wasn't there," he told the Daily Mail.
"They told me he should be in the next day but, again, he didn't show. I didn't see him until the Friday and when he turned up he had his dog with him! But he was very kind. People warned me...but I thought he was a very generous as well as a great man."
Driving Mr Clough
A former coach driver for Nottingham Forest has revealed how Cloughie took the team for an unusual visit during a trip to Middlesbrough. Tony Hughes has recently retired as the Reds' first-team driver after taking-up the post in 1991. He told the Forest matchday programme (March 24th, 2008): "Obviously getting the chance to work for Brian Clough and drive his teams around the country was something really special. I used to wake up on a morning and pinch myself and think 'can this be happening to me?'
"We were on our way to Middlesbrough for one game and I had organised a police escort to take us to the match. But on the way the gaffer told me to turn left, which was not on the route. As you do, I turned left and we ended up in this council estate. He got me to stop the bus, the police arrived and he was out on the pavement pointing to an upstairs window and telling everybody he was born in that room!"
Tony also remembers a visit to Sunderland's old ground, Roker Park, when a large crowd of youngsters wanted the autographs of Cloughie and his players after the match. "He got me to open the front door and the back door of the bus and one by one the kids streamed through getting his and all the players autographs. It was like the Pied Piper!
"We must have been there for an hour and a half and one or two of the players weren't very happy about it. But the kids were thrilled to bits. That was Brian all over...and there are countless other stories like that to show how generous and kind he was."
England Under-21 boss Stuart Pearce says Fabio Capello scares him in the same way Brian Clough did. The former Forest captain says the England manager has the same kind of no-nonsense attitude that Cloughie had. "You've only got to spend ten minutes in the fella's company to realise he's a serious performer," said Psycho. "I find him very similar to Brian Clough.
"I worked with Brian and, to be fair, he scared the life out of me and you were on your toes all the time. I get the same impression working with this fella now. He doesn't want to talk for hours about this and that and rubbish, he just wants to get on with the job.
"You could feel that in the dressing room in the first game. You could feel the atmosphere within the dressing room - he had the players on their toes. To be honest with you, I think that can only be good for the English game." Pearce's comments were reported in several British daily newspapers (March, 2008).
Message To Managers
A non-league referee says more managers should copy Cloughie's insistence on good behaviour on the pitch. Reuben Smith, who is based in Hounslow, says bosses who fail to prevent their players from showing dissent are to blame for a shortage of matchday officials. He says people are put-off from becoming referees because of the abuse they receive.
Smith, who officiates in the Combined Counties League, told a local newspaper in south-west London (February, 2008) that managers should set an example. "The greatest manager of recent decades, in my opinion, was the late great Brian Clough," he said. "I have heard endless stories from referees who came across his teams and always spoke about how well-behaved and disciplined they were.
"You only have to look at how well-behaved Roy Keane was at Forest and compare that to when he left them to see the influence he had. I wonder how many key 50-50 decisions went Forest's way because of the discipline in the team? Did referees subconsciously go in their favour when there was doubt over the decision? That is something we will never know, but it's something all intelligent managers should think about."
A Huge Mistake
The failure to give Brian Clough the England manager's job has been voted one of Britain's biggest mistakes. The poll in The Times newspaper (February, 2008) ranked the howler alongside other errors such as Chamberlain's appeasement of Hitler in 1938. One contributor wrote: "Not giving Brian Clough the job of managing England was a disaster."
A campaign has started to have a statue of Cloughie at Derby County's Pride Park Stadium. Teenage fan Ashley Wilkinson told the Derby Evening Telegraph (February, 2008) that he hoped supporters would back a petition. It follows the success of fans in Nottingham who decided to take action themselves and raised £70,000 for a statue of the Great Man, which will stand in the city centre. A statue was unveiled in Middlesbrough in 2007.
Derby County have already announced plans to name a square after Cloughie as part of the Pride Plaza redevelopment. Another fan, Kalwinder Singh Dhindsa, told the paper: "Brian Clough is my hero and it's about time the people of Derby had something fitting to recognise him."
Cloughie sculptor Les Johnson has visited a newspaper's picture library to help him create the statue of the Master Manager in Nottingham. Les travelled from his base in Hampshire to look at photographs of Old Big 'Ead from the archives of the Nottingham Evening Post. It's hoped the visit will help him capture key features for the £70,000 sculpture.
"You can never have too many pictures," said Les, who is looking forward to the challenge of making the bronze figure. "The pictures I’ve chosen will help me create the statue." Les is already making slight alterations to his original proposals, following a suggestion by Mrs Clough that the statue should have Brian walking towards the fans, rather than standing still. Cloughie will still have his hands clasped above his head, in a victorious gesture. There is a report and picture HERE.
The Nottinghamshire MP Kenneth Clarke has been remembering how he formed an unlikely alliance with Cloughie, despite coming from opposite sides of the political spectrum. Mr Clarke says the Master Manager sometimes asked for his help when signing foreign players. The MP, a Forest fan since childhood, was then Minister of Employment in the Conservative government.
"Brian used to occasionally ask for my help with work permits when he had bought foreign players and not sorted out the necessary paperwork," said Mr Clarke. But when he bought one particular player, Cloughie was not pleased with the reply he received. On her first day, one of Mr Clarke's staff sent back the paperwork saying the job should be advertised in the local paper first.
"So I had Cloughie telling me what he thought of my department telling him he should advertise the midfield vacancy in the Nottingham Evening Post to see if any unemployed bloke wanted to have a go in his side." It was then explained to the member of staff that different rules applied to footballers and the matter was sorted out. Mr Clarke's story was revealed in the Nottingham Forest matchday programme (Feb 16th, 2008).
Trouble For Play
It's emerged that the new Cloughie play will not go ahead, following financial problems at the Derby Playhouse. 'The Devil's League' was due to open on February 16th, 2008, two weeks later than originally scheduled. But news that the playhouse is having to close came at the end of the second week of rehearsals (February, 2008).
The new play would have seen actor Colin Tarrant revive the role as Clough, as he did in the highly-successful play in Nottingham, Old Big 'Ead in the Spirit of the Man. The production team also featured several of those behind the Nottingham play, including playwright Stephen Lowe and director Alan Dossor. A special reading of 'The Devil's League' was held at the Nottingham Playhouse in January, 2008.
As revealed on this website last year, the black comedy is set during the miners' strike in 1984 and recounts a fictional encounter between the Master Manager and Robert Maxwell, who owned Derby County. Read more about the production team's dissapointment, and see exclusive rehearsal photo's HERE. Fans who have tickets for the new play can visit the Derby Playhouse website HERE.
More on Statue Plans
International sculptor Les Johnson says he's relishing the challenge of creating Nottingham's bronze statue of Cloughie. Les was chosen as the artist to make the tribute following a uananimous decision by a selection panel which included Brian's wife, Barbara (see article below). Amid widespread media coverage of the announcement (January, 2008), Les told BBC Radio Five Live it was an 'absolute honour' to be awarded the commission.
Les told Five Live's Nicky Campbell that creating the statue would be an exciting challenge. "Brian is an amazing historic figure," he said. "The challenge is not only to capture that face we all recognise but also his personality - that vibrant and energetic approach to life and football."
The statue announcement also received the thumbs-up from the Nottingham Evening Post. In its comment column, the newspaper congratulated Les and said the location for the tribute was ideal, being in the city centre rather than the City Ground.
"We say the city centre is just right," said the Post. "Uniquely for a football manager, Clough was known to people who knew nothing about football. People who had never been to a Nottingham Forest or Derby County match still felt that he was 'one of them'. It would have been a shame had this memorial to Old Big 'Ead been confined to a place visited only by the football community." Watch a BBC report about the statue design announcement HERE.
Around 250 people attended a special preview of the new Cloughie play, with Colin Tarrant back in the role as the Master Manager. 'The Devil's League' is a black comedy about a fictional encounter between Old Big 'Ead and the controversial newspaper baron Robert Maxwell, who owned Derby County. The three actors involved took part in a reading of the script, without a set or costumes, at the Nottingham Playhouse during the first week of rehearsals (January, 2008). The production is due to open next month at the Derby Playhouse, which is in administration following financial problems.
Colin is reviving the role he had in the previous Cloughie play 'In the Spirit of the Man' and once again delivered Old Big 'Ead's one-liners brilliantly. He was joined on stage by John Hodgkinson, who plays Maxwell, and actress Clare Calbraith. The evening was introduced by playwright Stephen Lowe alongside director Alan Dossor.
International sculptor Les Johnson will make the bronze statue of Cloughie in Nottingham city centre. It follows a unanimous decision by a selection panel which included Brian's wife, Barbara. Mrs Clough told this website she was delighted with the decision. "I also liked the pose with Brian's hands clasped above his head," said Mrs Clough. "It conveys a sense of sharing a celebration with the fans."
Les Johnson, who is based in Hampshire, said he was extremely pleased to have been awarded the commission. His work was also the most popular among fans following a public consultation which included e-mails to this website. "This is a most prestigious project," said Les. "Brian Clough is such an iconic figure. He was unique and deserves to be commemorated. I am so pleased to be involved in celebrating his life."
Mrs Clough said she was impressed with the bust created by Mr Johnson, saying it captured a lot of Brian's character. She also believed the location of the statue was fitting, being close to the market square and the Council House, the scene of many trophy celebrations.
The statue has been made possible after a small group of volunteers raised £70,000 for the tribute. There are more details about the latest news HERE. More info about the statue fundHERE.
Fans in Derby are hoping for a Cloughie statue in their city, after seeing the success of fund-raisers in Nottingham. The Derby Evening Telegraph reported (January, 2008) that Derby County supporters would welcome a memorial, following the unveiling of Nottingham's proposed statue designs. Elaine Dean of the Rams Trust told the paper she wanted to see a statue in the city. "Nottingham also have a stand named after Cloughie and there is even a statue in Middlesbrough when he was a young man. Everybody has beaten us to it now."
The leader of Derby City Council, Chris Williamson, said he would also support a bid for a memorial statue. Cllr Williamson was behind efforts to give the Master Manager the Freedom of Derby in 2003, ten years after he received the Freedom of Nottingham. A small group of volunteers in Nottingham raised £70,000 in 18 months for a bronze statue to stand in the city centre.
Cloughie's former secretary has been giving her verdict on the proposed designs for a statue of the Master Manager in Nottingham city centre. Carole Washington viewed the proposals on this website. "They all have something about them which merits them being the statue, they are all done in their own style," she told the Nottingham Evening Post (January, 2008). "He would have been proud whichever one was chosen."
Fans have been able to view the designs at Nottingham Council House and on this website. The six-day consultation ended at midday on Saturday January 12th, 2008. Comment cards and e-mails will be passed to the selection panel which will meet later in January to make a final decision on which sculptor will be commissioned, as well as the pose for the statue. There's more about the statue and the selection process HERE.
Kick-off for Designs
Proposed designs for a bronze statue of Cloughie in Nottingham city centre are going under the spotlight. Models and busts of Old Big 'Ead are going on display for fans to give their views. They can be seen on this website and at the Council House in Nottingham, from midday on Monday January 7th until midday on Saturday January 12th.
The designs have been produced by three short-listed sculptors. Fans will be able to send their views by e-mail to this website, or write their comments on special postcards and leave them in a box in the Council House foyer. These will then be considered by a selection panel, which will meet later in January to make a final decision on which sculptor will be commissioned, as well as the pose for the statue.
E-mails received through the site will be passed to the panel. The designs will be available to view soon. Brian Clough’s widow Barbara will be part of the selection panel. "Brian would be absolutely amazed at the idea of a statue," said Mrs Clough. "On behalf of his children, grandchildren and his brothers and sisters, I’d like to say a huge and sincere thank you."
The chairman of the statue fund, Paul Ellis, said he was looking forward to seeing the proposed designs. "This is a vital stage of the selection process and we hope as many fans as possible will come along and see the designs." There's more about the statue and the selection process HERE.
A biography of Cloughie has been added to a prestigious on-line reference guide. The Master Manager is the latest name to be included in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. This website has been officially recognised as a source of information for the entry.