No-nonsense Mourinho compared to ‘Old Big Head’ Clough

Date published: Wednesday 20th September 2017 9:23 - Oli Fisher

Burton boss Nigel Clough insists he can see similarities between his father Brian and Jose Mourinho.

The Brewers manager has drawn comparisons between the pair ahead of Burton’s trip to Manchester United on Wednesday.

They go to Old Trafford in the Carabao Cup third round with United joint top of the Premier League and seemingly back on track under Mourinho after struggling since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement in 2013.

In his first season in charge last year the Portuguese won the League Cup and also clinched the Europa League to return United to the Champions League for the first time in two years.

And Clough can see similarities with Mourinho and his charismatic late father Brian, who won two European Cups, four League Cups and the old First Division title at Nottingham Forest.

“I think just the way they go about it and the way that they deal with things in such a no-nonsense manner,” he said.

“It’s black or it’s white and that’s it. If a player does the job for him he has him in and if he doesn’t that’s it.

“I think they look at things in very similar ways in that department.

“I think the way he (Mourinho) deals with the press and the media, there are similarities there but he’s just no-nonsense and says what he thinks and that’s the biggest similarity.

“I have spoken to him but not met him. He did the foreword for the ‘I Believe in Miracles’ book. The Forest thing.

“So I spoke to him briefly over that – so I’m looking forward to it.”

Clough was manager when Burton last faced United in the FA Cup in 2006, drawing 0-0 at the Pirelli Stadium to book a replay.

They were beaten 5-0 but it earned the club over £500,000 when they were Conference part-timers and in their first season at the Pirelli.

Now, as a Sky Bet Championship side, Clough insisted the game at Old Trafford helped set the club up for their rise up the divisions.

“Most people have some sort of backing when they build grounds and some sort of fail-safe,” he said.

“We didn’t have that so it was a reward for the chairman’s bravery at the time to say ‘we will have a go at building it’. It went over budget and we got Man United at the absolute perfect time.

“I think the chairman (Ben Robinson) was in tears. Seriously. He was crying, such was the whole emotion of the day as much as anything.

“He knew at the time what getting that replay meant for the club going forward.

“He has seen (referee) Howard Webb a few times since and Howard says we nearly got a penalty when (Gerard) Pique handled it.

“Howard says ‘I think it might have been a penalty’ and our chairman says ‘it definitely wasn’t’.”

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