Brian Clough - My Fake Diary

Saturday, 15 September 2012

This lad got it right when writing about me - straight and to the point, I liked this:

Clough was never a big fan of Don Revie's Leeds side so it was a huge shock when he replaced Revie at Elland Road. What came as a bigger shock was that Clough managed to last 44 days before being axed.

In 1965 Clough was appointed manager of Fourth Division Hartlepool United. The new boss installed Peter Taylor as his assistant at the Victoria Ground. Taylor had been a team-mate of Clough at Middlesbrough. The duo led Pool to a creditable eighth place finish in 1967. The North East club had spent most of their 57-year history rooted to the bottom of the Football League.

These noticeable achievement made Clough and Taylor hot property. In 1968 they were recruited by Derby County. The once proud Rams had fallen on hard times and looked destined for relegation to the Third Division. The appointment was to prove a masterstroke, a year later Derby won the Second Division (now Championship) title. Much of the credit has to be reserved for Taylor. The loyal number two certainly had an eye for a player. It was Taylor who instigated the purchase of Dave Mackay, a signing which breathed life into a fallen giant. In 1972 the Rams won the First Division title for the fist time in their history.

The names Gemmill, O'Hare, Todd and McFarland were now household names. While their charismatic manager instantly became a television personality. The outspoken boss was a regular on chat shows and was never afraid to air his views. These outbursts caused ruptions at The Baseball Ground. Chairman Sam Longson grew tired of his manager's controversial views and veiled criticism. In 1973 Clough offered his resignation. The board accepted and Clough was replaced by Mackay. The Rams fans protested as irate supporters marched through the city. Meawhile the County players signed a petition demanding the reinstatement of their managerial team. This public support failed to sway Longson and the highly successful tenure was over.

Clough and Taylor briefly reappeared at Brighton & Hove Albion. The South Coast adventure was brought to an abrupt end when Clough was appointed Leeds United manager.

The Nightmare: The move to Elland Road was doomed from the outset. Leeds originally wanted to hire Clough and Taylor, but Taylor decided to stay with
Brighton.

Clough needed his faithful ally in West Yorkshire. Clough was stepping into the shoes of the legendary Don Revie. Revie left Elland Road to become England manger. On the surface the two men were peas from the same pod. The pair were born in Middlesbrough before embarking on successful playing careers. Both had taken provincial clubs from the lower reaches of the Second Division to the summit of English Football. That is where the similarities ended.

Under Revie Leeds were renowned for their muscular approach. Their strong arm tactics attracted plenty of critics who hated Leeds style of play. Brian Clough was the loudest of those dissenting voices. The Derby manager expressing his dislike for Billy Bremner and company. The appointment was akin to a vegetarian been named chief executive of McDonald's.

You might have thought the new United manager may have offered an olive branch to his new charges. In typical style Cloughie ignored convention wisdom. During his first training session the gaffer continued his tirade. He told the reigning League Champions to "Throw all their medals into the nearest dustbin, because they had all been won by blooming cheating."

The rant had little effect, Bremner was sent off in the 1974 Charity Shield. The fiery Scot exchanged blows with Kevin Keegan. Both players famously removed their shirts as they left the field of play. The FA threw the book at Bremner, the Leeds captain was suspended for two months.

The League campaign began with a 3-2 defeat at Stoke City and QPR won at Elland Road to pile the pressure on Clough. A fortunate win over Birmingham City offered temporary rest bite. But further defeats to Manchester City and Burnley signalled the parting of the ways. After just 44 days in charge Brian Clough parted company with Leeds.


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