The rise and rise of Burton Albion Football Club

Ten years ago Nigel Clough and Burton Albion finished their campaign sitting in ninth place in the fifth tier of English football following a 1-0 win away at Ebbsfleet United.

And while fans of the Staffordshire outfit were no doubt feeling optimistic about their side having already done their fair share of climbing through the pyramid, nobody knew what the next decade would bring.

In that time the Brewers have seen four new managers and witnessed the long awaited return of Clough.

But how did each of his predecessors get on?

Roy McFarland was appointed after Nigel Clough was approached by Derby County, and in his five months in charge he took Burton to the Football League for the first time in their history as champions of the Conference Premier Division.

After turning down the chance to manage Burton in League Two, Paul Peschisolido was appointed in place of McFarland and ensured Albion kept their Football League status for almost three years, although the Canadian boss left the Pirelli Stadium following six straight league defeats in 2012.

Burton finished that campaign in 17th place under the newly appointed Gary Rowett, who would take the Brewers to new heights the following season as Burton finished the campaign in fourth place, three points off an automatic spot.

However, Rowett’s Burton failed to gain promotion to League One via the playoffs for two years running and eventually the then-40-year old was snapped up by Birmingham City.

That left ex-Premier League legend Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink tasked with the responsibility of taking Burton further, and he did not disappoint in his first season in charge of the club. Taking over from Rowett after 16 games of the 2014-15 campaign, Hasselbaink led Burton to the league title, losing just three times in 30 league games.

Once again another so-called bigger fish came calling for Burton’s boss in December 2015 while Albion were top of League One.

Queens Park Rangers were the club in question, and subsequently Hasselbaink left to take over at Loftus Road, leaving Burton chairman Ben Robinson managerless.

That gap was somewhat short-lived and the managerial circle was complete when Nigel Clough agreed to take over for a second spell in December 2015, leading Burton to their first ever promotion to the Championship.

And so the Burton Albion tale continues, as they prepare to kick-off their campaign away at Nottingham Forest.

Can Clough make it three promotions in three seasons?

Their team might well be 28/1 to do so but Brewers’ fans will believe anything is possible.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.


Alex Apati

Having graduated from Birmingham City University with a degree in Creative Writing with English, Alex joined the News team following a three year stint working for Ladbrokes behind the counter. When he's not watching darts, he's throwing them. Failing that you'll find him YouTubeing Thierry Henry's greatest Arsenal goals.