Sky Bet League One side Sheffield United have today announced Nigel Clough as their new manager on a two-and-a-half year deal.
The 47-year old was sacked by Derby County in September and replaces David Weir at Bramall Lane after the Scot was shown the door after four months in charge, winning just once in 10 league matches.
The Blades co-chairman Prince Abdullah bin Mosaad bin Abdulaziz Al Saud told the official club website: “Nigel was the clear, first choice of the board. He brings an approach to the game that is well suited to what we are trying to achieve at Sheffield United”.
Clough’s first game in charge of the struggling United is Saturday’s home fixture against Crewe Alexandra.
The former England international, who played for Nottingham Forest, Liverpool and Manchester City during his playing career, started his managerial career in 1998 with Burton Albion guiding the Brewers through the Non-League pyramid leaving them at the top of the Conference Premier when he left for Derby County in 2009 following in the footsteps of his late father Brian.
Clough failed to take the Rams into the Championship play-offs in his four seasons in charge but he did nurture talent from the club’s academy such as Will Hughes and Mason Bennett.
Caretaker boss Chris Morgan has been kept on at the club but the Blades have had to pay Derby compensation to bring in Clough’s backroom staff of Gary Crosby and Andy Garner.
This is the third season in the third tier of English football for United after Danny Wilson failed in his first full season when the Blades lost to Huddersfield Town in the 2012 play-off final. Wilson was sacked in April 2013 leaving Chris Morgan in charge on a caretaker basis for the run-in but they were beaten in the play-offs again this time in the semi-final to Yeovil Town.
David Weir was appointed in June this year in his first managerial role and after winning his first league game against Notts County, the former Everton and Rangers defender picked up just two more points in the following nine league game and was sacked after a 1-0 defeat to Hartlepool United in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy.
The potential is there in the South Yorkshire club, only six years ago the club was in the Premier League and at last Saturday’s home match against Port Vale saw a decent crowd of over 18,500 inside Bramall Lane. Clough must now set his sights on bridging that 13-point gap from the top six the league.