Brian Clough, the coach who achieved in the Champions League what Pep Guardiola did not
The story of Brian Clough is one of the few who football remembered and it rarely says so. The passage of the English strategist is as if it were taken from a screenplay that did not become a film, because in his life inside and outside the green rectangle has had feats and failures; good and bad; gratitude and resentment. However, his overwhelming personality maintains him as one of Britain’s historic strategists, as some of his greatest achievements. Today, He was only surpassed by Zinedine Zidane with the prodigious Real Madrid.
Champions League nights are said to be magical, countless world stars and those who have become legends have paraded on its stages. All those who have minimal participation in the most important event at club level has the rest of his life to live in peace. Clough, who was one of the most purist technicians of the 80s achieved something that today is totally unimaginable. Currently, any team that wants to aspire to win the Champions League must invest an exorbitant sum have enough parts and, even so, the result is not always as expected. The proof is the Manchester City and Paris Saint Germainwho have joined the state teams, its owners are respectively the United Arab Emirates and Qatarwho have spent billions over the past five years and simply they can’t get the with big ears. This story is the opposite of Brian and his prodigious Nottingham Forest. That even a movie came to have.
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His first experience on the bench began in 1965, at the age of 30, and he was in charge of Hartlepool United, an English second division team. Clough’s career as a footballer was cut short after a knee injury. But already at the helm of the team, Clough had to face several difficulties. Hartlepool were a team fighting not to be relegated and financially they didn’t even have what teams in that category have today. But his thirst for transcendence led him to Derby County in 1967. The Derby had been trying to return to the upper circuit for several years without success, butWhen Brian arrived, everything changed.. The latter allowed himself the luxury of cleaning the locker room and ran to the gardener. With just four original team players, Clough went on a 22-game unbeaten streakwhich resulted in the title of champion.
But this stage would not be understood without its historical rivalry with Don Revie, the manager of Leeds United and whom Clough cheated for foul play. But life always takes a turn. After five years with Derby, Clough moved to Leeds as a replacement for Revie because he became England manager. Brian’s stay with the Yorkshire team lasted just 44 days as the players, still loyal to the now national coach, did everything they could to prevent him from continuing with them.
With such a big ego, Clough grabbed his bags and left. In January 1975, our protagonist took the reins of Nottingham Forest, which was in the middle of the English second division and now only would devote himself to the ascent to the elite. After one season, in 77-78, Brian won the championship and moved up to the English first division. And a year later, it would reach its peak splendour: win the Champions League (European Cup at the time). Malmö was the victim of the English team. Same feat that a year later would repeat the championship against Hamburg.
Was maintained in charge of Nottingham until 1993 when the team returned to the Second Division. From then on, Clough retired from the fields, but not from football. He was in charge of discovering footballers like Teddy Sheringham and Roy Keane. brian He died in 2004 of cancer. in the stomach. Derby County and Nottingham Forest fans respect him for what he has achieved at both institutions.
Manchester City can boast their coffers will always be full. But PSG can boast of hiring the best footballers today. But both are far from realizing what Brian achieved with lowly Nottingham. And while it’s true that Pep has won two Champions League trophies, He was not able to achieve a bi-championship.
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