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 Monday, 12 August, 2002, 08:30 GMT 09:30 UK
Clough's bottle battle
Former Nottingham Forest and Derby manager Brian Clough
Brian Clough fought a tough battle against drink
Former Nottingham Forest and Derby manager Brian Clough has admitted that alcohol almost killed him - and led to his downfall from the game.

Clough's battle with booze has prompted a warning from doctors that one more drink could kill him.

A glittering management career, that included two European Cup triumphs with Forest, came to ignominious end.

And Clough admits: "I dropped my biggest clanger by getting into drink."

Clough said: "On reflection, I'm sure the drink clouded my judgment during that final, fateful season in management when I took Nottingham Forest down.

I started missing things on the field. I used to be able to remember the lot, nothing escaped my attention

Brian Clough

"If I had not been drinking I'm convinced they wouldn't have been relegated, although I don't believe that was the only reason.

"I started missing things on the field. I used to be able to remember the lot, nothing escaped my attention," admits Clough in his autobiography 'Cloughie - Walking on Water'.

Clough's admission of his battle against drink comes after George Best underwent a liver transplant.

He said: "My drinking has impaired my judgment, worried my family and I'm still having ongoing treatment to sort out my damaged liver.

"I'm dealing with my drinking and I have a reputation for getting things done.

I wish I was on whatever pills Bobby Robson's taking

Brian Clough

Clough was famed for the controversial views that earned him the nickname 'Old Big Head'.

In his book, he criticises Arsenal's disciplinary record and claims manager Arsene Wenger should be fined.

Clough also pays tribute to the longevity of fellow north-easterner Sir Bobby Robson.

"At 69, Bobby is two years older than me. I wish I was on whatever pills he's taking!" joked Clough.

"He is building something at Newcastle that could last a long time.

"It's great to see an English manager having so much success, even if he is ancient!"

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12 Aug 02 | West Bromwich Albion
12 Aug 02 | Republic of Ireland
12 Aug 02 | Man Utd
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