“Rome wasn’t built in a day. But I wasn’t on that particular job.” – a quote from one of the most controversial and self-confident managers in English football, Brian Clough.
Brian Clough was an English football player and manager. As a player, he was a devastating striker and played for Middlesbrough and Sunderland in England’s Second Division.
Clough played 296 games and scored 267 career goals, before being forced to retire due to a knee injury in 1964, at the age of 29.
However, Brian couldn’t imagine his life without football and in October 1965 became the manager of Hartlepools United (the club’s name was changed in 1968 to Hartlepool United).
His managerial career was way more successful, as Clough led Derby County to their first league title in 1972, before establishing himself as one of the best managers in the world during his time in charge at Nottingham Forrest.
— UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) March 21, 2015
Brian Clough was appointed as manager of Forest on 6 January 1975, twelve weeks after the end of his 44-day tenure as manager of Leeds United. And the rest is history.
He spent three seasons creating his team, before winning the English football league in 1978. His success didn’t stop there, as Clough conquered Europe in the following season and managed to retain the European Cup in 1980.
Brian Clough has retired in 1993, adding four League Cup victories with Nottingham Forrest to his trophy cabinet. The club hasn’t won a single trophy ever since.
If we put his achievements aside, the legendary manager was known for his charismatic nature and controversial interviews.
He was born on 21 March and as we are moving closer to, what would have been his 84th birthday, we would like to remember some of his most famous ‘Cloughisms’.
“Players lose you games, not tactics. There’s so much crap talked about tactics by people who barely know how to win at dominoes” – on England’s dismal exit from Euro 2000.
“For all his horses, knighthoods and championships, he hasn’t got two of what I’ve got. And I don’t mean ball”‘ – referring to Sir Alex Ferguson’s failure to win two successive European Cups.
“That Seaman is a handsome young man but he spends too much time looking in his mirror rather than at the ball. You can’t keep goal with hair like that” – on the pony-tailed former England goalkeeper David Seaman.
“We talk about it for 20 minutes and then we decide I was right” – explaining how he deals with players who do not agree with him.
“I bet their dressing room will smell of garlic rather than liniment over the next few months.” – on the number of French players at Arsenal.
“If a chairman sacks the manager he initially appointed, he should go as well.” – defending himself and his colleagues.
— Proper Football (@sid_lambert) May 13, 2018
“If God had wanted us to play football in the clouds, he’d have put grass up there.” – on ‘long balls’ football.
“I wouldn’t say I was the best manager in the business. But I was in the top one.” – looking back at his success.
“Don’t argue with idiots. They’ll bring you down to their level and then beat you with experience.” – a piece of advice for former England cricket selector Geoff Miller.
“Don’t send me flowers when I’m dead. If you like me, send them while I’m alive.” – after the operation which saved his life.