Steve McClaren has signed a two-year deal at the iPro Stadium, replacing Nigel Pearson, who left the club last week following a five-month spell.
The 55-year-old’s first stint at Derby lasted two years, and in that time, he guided the team to the Championship playoff final in the 2013-14 campaign, eventually losing 1-0 to Queens Park Rangers.
In the following season, Derby crumbled in the final 13 games of the season, winning just two and failing to qualify for the playoffs.
Three weeks after getting sacked by the Rams, McClaren was hired as Newcastle United manager, lasting just nine months at St James’ Park.
On Wednesday, Derby announced McClaren’s return and confirmed that Chris Powell will remain as assistant manager, while first-team coach Kevin Phillips and goalkeeping coach Pascal Zuberbuhler will retain their positions.
Chief executive Sam Rush told the club’s official website: “We are delighted that Steve McClaren has agreed to re-join us as our manager. We enjoyed some fantastic and memorable moments under Steve during his previous tenure in charge.
“Steve’s arrival and subsequent work helped transform how we played our football. Steve’s time at Derby came to a premature end and I know he regrets that greatly. He values hugely his relationship with our supporters and I know that he will work very hard to ensure that the special connection returns.
“When we sat down as a board to begin the process of appointing a new manager it was apparent, as the architect of our style of football, that Steve was a prime candidate.
Mel Morris , our chairman, is clear about the plan for Derby County and we strongly believe that with Chris Powell, alongside Steve, we can ensure a successful future ahead.”
McClaren added: “I am excited to be back at Derby County as the club’s manager. I have a great affiliation with the club, having been here on three previous occasions, and I am really delighted at the prospect of finishing what we started back in September 2013.
“I regret how my time at Derby ended back in 2015 and I am very motivated to put things right for the club and our supporters. My ultimate aspiration remains exactly what it was before, to take Derby County back to the Premier League.
“This football club has fantastic ambition, brilliant supporters and wonderful backing from the chairman Mel Morris. I am looking forward to working alongside Mel, as well as Sam Rush who initially brought me back here in 2013. Sam and I worked very well together previously and I am certain we can pick up where we left off. For me, it was vitally important that Chris Powell and the existing team remained on the coaching staff.”
McClaren’s first game back in charge will be at home against Leeds United this Saturday.