Paul Jewell pays tribute to former club Derby County

PAUL Jewell’s time as Derby County manager may not be remembered too fondly by Rams’ fans.

In 58 matches, Jewell won just 12 times – and none in the Premier League as he was unable to stop Derby’s slide out of the top division with the worst ever points total to boot. But it hasn’t stopped the Town manager from paying tribute to the club – even if the affection is far from mutual among the supporters travelling to Suffolk on Saturday.

“Wherever you look in the Championship, it’s full of clubs with great tradition and great fan bases,” Jewell said. “Derby reminds me of Ipswich – a great club, with great tradition, great facilities and a great fan base. At the moment though, like us, they are trying to get out of the Championship.

“It just didn’t happen for me when I went there. We went 14 games in the Premier League without scoring a goal, but it was always going to be difficult and as hard as I tried I couldn’t turn it around. I have no regrets about going to Derby though.”

And Jewell revealed he left the Rams with a parting gift – an endorsement of his successor Nigel Clough. Jewell explained: “When I left I told Adam Pearson that I thought he (Nigel Clough) was the right man for the job. I just felt that they needed the feel-good factor back after a tough few years.

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“I thought Nigel Clough was the natural choice because of his dad (Brian). I think the fans just needed someone who was synonymous with Derby in the past.”

As with Ipswich, last weekend also saw Derby halt a dire run – the 2-1 win over Bristol City their first victory in seven attempts.

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Clough said: “The win against Bristol puts that little bit more belief into the players. Ipswich will be a different camp after getting a win at Barnsley.

“We saw Ipswich several times during their losing run and they weren’t playing that badly. They were unlucky a couple of times with the timings of goals and things like that.

“They looked out of it against Barnsley, who had won five out of six, and they come back and score five in the second half which pretty much sums up the nature of the Championship.”

And of last season’s victory at Portman Road when the now-departed Kris Commons scored twice in a 2-0 victory, Clough added: “It was a good performance last year at Ipswich.

“We scored two good goals and I thought Frank Fielding was excellent that night he made some great saves to keep us in the game.

“We hadn’t got a win there for a few years so we’ll be looking to get another one on Saturday.”

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