Aston Villa earlier on Friday appointed Roberto Di Matteo as their new manager, yet it could have been so different after talks between Villa owner Randy Lerner and Pearson had taken place.
The new Derby manager was unveiled on Friday in-front of the cameras and he wished Di Matteo success in his new post, before adding that Villa was an option but he opted to choose the Rams.
“I wish Robbie every success, but not as much success as me! The important thing is I’m here at Derby and I’m here because I think this is the right fit for Derby and Derby’s the right fit for me,” Pearson was quoted as saying by the Birmingham Mail.
Pearson enjoyed plenty of success at East Midlands rivals Leicester City before becoming Derby manager, and most supporters at the iPro would gladly accept a similar turn of events with the Rams.
Both Derby and Villa will be among the challengers for automatic promotion to the Premier League next season, though both managers may need time to get their ideas across.
Di Matteo won both the FA Cup and the Champions League with Chelsea before managing Schalke, so for Villa to bring him in while a Championship club is a real coup on their behalf.