Clough and Ferguson show sons can also rise

Derby County 2 Peterborough United 1

Some 16-and-a-half years since the last Clough-Ferguson rivalry ended, a few months before Brian's career closed and just as Sir Alex was about to begin his domination of the English game, the new one has begun. There had been comparisons made, parallels drawn, memories evoked. But none of it meant more to Nigel and Darren than this result.

Ferguson Jnr, after winning two straight promotions with the club backing his genetic inheritance to carry them forward, insists that his ambitions will not be revised, even after their leap from League One to the Championship. This is not a season for consolidation, for simply avoiding the drop; it is one for more progress. When his chairman said he wanted to see Peterborough in the Premier League, he had not merely been fantasising with Barry Fry.

But, in time, he may reflect that going to Derby and losing to a goal scored three minutes from the end might not have been too bad a result. Clough Jnr, after using the second half of last season to assess what he had taken on, has trimmed his squad during the summer, made one or two careful additions, and is confident, whatever he might say in public about taking small steps, that his team will not be worrying about the bottom of the table when the business end of the season arrives. The season may be 46 games long but the opening day often sets the tone. Derby, through their troubled recent times, had not won on the opening day since 2003, so this result will be seen as significant and will reinforce their new manager's belief.

Derby were a goal up after four minutes yesterday, Miles Addison, the central defender, bravely diving into a crowded penalty area to head the ball home after new signing Lewis Buxton had nodded a Paul Green cross back across goal from beyond the far post.

It gave them the impetus to control the first 20 minutes as Peterborough struggled to adjust to the higher tempo of the Championship and for a while it seemed they would win comfortably.

But Peterborough's confidence began to grow after George Boyd, given an attacking midfield role, saw a goal disallowed for a marginal offside after 23 minutes. After Ferguson had adjusted his formation to counter Derby's numbers in midfield, their performance in the second half was much more threatening and, though it took a penalty to get them back on level terms, it was well deserved.

Boyd converted after Derby goalkeeper Stephen Bywater had clumsily brought down substitute Lee Frecklington. Peterborough could not, unfortunately, hold on to their point, Gary Teale stabbing home the winner after a Kris Commons corner, but Ferguson was encouraged enough by his side's showing, regardless of the result.

"It is clear we need to do better with set-pieces but for an hour of the match we gave a good account of ourselves," he said. "The lads will have learned a lot from today's game and once they start to believe in themselves they will be all right. A lot is made about us taking big steps and keeping faith with the same players and there is no doubt it is a more physical league. But this is a good squad with a lot of ability."

Clough discounted the significance of his side ending their opening-day hoodoo. "It is just one game in 46 and there is still a lot to be done," he said. "I'd settle for a few more results like that, although maybe not so close, but I was pleased with the honesty and endeavour, and the crowd appreciated it."

His father would have approved too, although both managers said their parental heritage would not be a subject for discussion when they shared a drink afterwards. "There is a mutual respect but I don't think it will dominate our conversation," Ferguson said.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there