Three years on, in memory of Brian Clough..

It was kind of ironic to wake to news of Jose Mourinho parting company with Chelsea this morning, because 20th September marks the anniversary of the death of Brian Clough back in 2004.  Whilst personally the comparisons between the two men were tenuous at best, there were similar mannerisms and a characteristic arrogance that did make me slightly warm to the Blues boss more than much of the country seem to have.

It certainly doesn’t seem to have been three years since that sad news broke around the country, and I’m sure much like me, most Forest fans – and hopefully football fans in general – will take a moment to reflect on the memories and achievements the great man provided throughout his career – be it as a player in the North East, or as a manager – most prominently right here in the midlands with ourselves and Derby County of course.

The blog wasn’t in existence at the time, but when he passed away it felt akin to the ravens leaving the tower of London, and the fading edifices of the City Ground, and the bleak position we find ourselves in the hierarchy of football bear testiment to the wonderful things he achieved for us – because frankly, without him we wouldn’t have looked or felt quite so out of place where we find ourselves these days.

Regular readers will know that when I think fond memories of Cloughie, there’s a man frequently-forgotten who deserves a pedestal of equal magnitude – both amongst Forest and Derby supporters, so as well as taking a few moments today to think about Brian Clough, I’ll also be thinking about Peter Taylor, for it was the magnificent partnership these two formed that was the alchemy for the true heights we scaled – so do take a moment, and think of these two great ambassadors for Nottingham Forest, and for football as a whole.

Rest in peace, both – hopefully you’re both reconciled in the next world, I imagine in three years you will have already assembled a pretty formidible team!


7 Responses

  1. I grew up in the Clough Taylor era and what a joy as a kid to support a team like Forest – conquering the league, Europe etc. Taylor was a big part of that success and even BC would acknowledge that, so perhaps its time the club did ?. I hope they are both making each other laugh now. Rest in peace

  2. I too began supporting Forest in that era. My mates dad took us to watch Liverpool the year after we got promoted. He was a Liverpool fan, but us kids fell in love with everything Forest!
    I was lucky enough to meet BC on a number of ocassions, through supporters clubs functions etc, and he was absolutely marvellous company. I have a wonderful photo in my office of he and I embracing after I had presented his wife with some flowers once.
    I agree with you, the club should also honour Taylor in some way, too.

    No way can Jose be compared to Brian Clough. Cloughie made his players play with a smile and never back-chat or harrass the referee. And he turned average players into european champions. Jose turns great players into…well, it’s easier now to win the CL and he still hasn’t done it with Chelski.

  3. Does anyone know why Taylor hasn’t been honoured in the past ? It does seem a little strange nothing has been done ????

  4. I remember reading Mark Arthur as being quoted that it would be inappropriate to honour Taylor since he “betrayed us and left us for our bitter rivals”… as ever, our dear Chief Exec has his finger on the pulse of the fans…

    … seems funny he then backed a ‘Brian Clough Trophy’ which is of course, as much about us celebrating the impact of Sir Brian along with the Derby fans, who were of course ‘betrayed’ in very similar circumstances.

  5. Waxing lyrical then NFFC 🙂
    Pleased tho’ you’ve brought Peter Taylor into the article. I’ve always believed that great as BC was, he really achieved only when with Peter Taylor.
    It was interesting to hear similar sentiments in the Radio 4 “Great Lives” prog. This captured some of the chemistry between them – especially regarding BC only accepting being told he was wrong from one person – Taylor.
    Main reason IMHO why Cloughie would not have made a good England manager.

    What a gulf twixt then and now ……

  6. Well said mate, it seems to me that they were good foyles for each other.
    I was fortunate to have met both, I thanked them for taking me on a wonderful footballing journey, Cloughi tugged my sleave and said “Aye, make the most of it lad, tomorrow it could all end”
    I believe like you, had Forest never had the Clough/Taylor partership, maybe being in the 3rd tier would have been the norm for us.
    We probably will never see their likes again in modern day football where money and backchatting the referee seems to be parmount.
    I thanked them then, and i thank them now for allowing me to be able to watch football as it should be played. R.I.P. Both.

  7. I, too, started watching Forest in the 78/79 season. It was exciting stuff. It is strange to think that is only 4 years after that interview with Don Revie – and he was set to do what his big mouth had claimed.

    It certainly did change after Peter Taylor left – now that was a shock on a par with Mourinho’s exit from Chelsea. My Dad always reckoned that Taylor was the best at spotting a good buy, and so was crucial in making a brilliant team from not-so-brilliant players. Of course Mr Clough spotted a certain Roy Keane, amongst others, so he was no mug in the market.

    Cloughie’s last home game, even though we lost, was probably one of the best days of my life. We all knew he was going, and why, and nothing could be done to change it, so we wanted to give him the best send-off possible. It was one of those days that you can look back on and say “I was there”, knowing it was a key moment. I still wear the shirt, occasionally.

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