Derby have had one offer for the 21-year-old, who played under Clough at Burton, rejected by the League Two club.
Clough said: "It is ongoing. We put a bid in a while back and Crewe's valuation was way above ours.
"It always seems to be the way, but a bit of toing and froing and I think eventually we will get an agreement suitable to all parties."
Meanwhile, Crewe youngsters Ben Marshall and Matthew Lund have joined Premier League neighbours Stoke.
Both players, who came through Crewe's youth system, turned down the club's offer of a professional contract. However, Alex are entitled to compensation for the duo as they are under the age of 24.