Select Page

Brentford’s Young Squad Have Finally Come Of Age

Brentford’s Young Squad Have Finally Come Of Age

Beesotted contributor Jim Levack reflects on Brentford’s battling victory over Reading at The Madjeski Stadium and feels that the team have finally come of age . 

It was good but not a vintage Brentford performance by any means, but there won’t have been many among the 3,000 travelling fans who cared too much at the final whistle.

As I headed towards the Madejski, I had an uneasy feeling that everyone was travelling along the M4 expecting a stroll to the three points. Anyone who has followed Brentford knows it doesn’t work like that.

Brentford would need to be resolute, patient, composed and savvy to come away with a result. That they managed all four is a testament to just how far this side has come.

The goal and general performance aside, this clash marked a watershed in Brentford’s season… a game we may well look back at and say ‘that was when we truly started to dream’.

We didn’t play brilliantly but ground out a result against a side desperate to arrest an eight-game winless run. And our game management was almost faultless.

Flo walked off when substituted, Sergi sought medical help after feeling a twinge late on and then there were those beautiful bookings – all designed to break the home side’s momentum and frustrate the fans as we have been by experienced sides before.

I’ve asked Dean Smith in the past whether he thinks his side are proficient enough in the so-called ‘dark arts’ and he’s looked at me nonplussed because it’s clear they work more on the technical side of things in training.

But at Reading we looked, arguably for the first time, like a squad playing with its head as well as its heart, and both are critical in this simple game we all love.

When Andreas Bjelland gave the ref the thumbs up after taking a card for the team on 86 minutes, I smiled. Woods and Canos had gone into the official’s book in the previous five, and it wasn’t just bad luck.

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t condone diving and deception and am not a great fan of the corner flag countdown, but the odd slightly mistimed tackle that helps you pick up maximum points is another part of the armoury that a once naïve Brentford have now learned.

In the dying minutes at Reading I tried to view the game from a Reading fan’s perspective. Watching through blue and white specs, Brentford looked like the side with all the nous… and the flair to match.

It was telling that the goal came as Reading had pushed on recklessly for the first time in a while. Brentford were quick, powerful and ruthless in exploiting it and then cynically strong in holding on… the mark of all the great teams.

Yes, it could and probably should have ended 5-2 and yes sometimes we’re not clinical enough in the final third, but this was a win where even a short time ago we’d have drawn or even lost. 

Barbet, a cheeky Reading target pre match, was imperious while Mepham continues to ooze assurance that belies his years. But it was Kamohelo Mokotjo who caught the eye with his best display in red and white, tidying up, spreading the play, never wasteful and with a tidy little stepover to boot.

Lasse, well he was just Lasse… an intelligent footballer ice cold in the box who I’m hoping knows what’s possible both at Brentford and in World Cup terms if he stays, and what he might risk if he doesn’t. Ditto Bjelland, whose constant talking has improved his and his young protégé’s game.

Sawyers was quality once more while Woods did what he does consistently, just as the rest of the squad and the system Smith has so effectively got them working within, do every week.

Reading away was proof, if any were needed, that this is a squad capable of making a little bit of history… oh and it still has Marcondes, Judge and Co waiting in the wings.

And we’re still under the radar.

 

 

 

 

MORE RECENT CONTENT

MOST READ CONTENT

Push Up Brentford!

Push Up Brentford!

In the second instalment of our historical mini-pods, where we talk about some of the great projects currently underway to celebrate Griffin Park and our club's proud history, we talk to Savvy Bee, one of the people behind Push Up Brentford! It's a great Bees oral...

read more
Fifty Years Ago

Fifty Years Ago

Fifty years ago this week, The Bees were in a similar race for promotion as they were before this season was put on pause - and although there were no play-offs back then - the league table was tight at the top with six clubs slogging it out at the top. A lot was...

read more
Free Brentford Book Offer To Help Local Food Bank

Free Brentford Book Offer To Help Local Food Bank

Firstly, we hope you and your family are safe and well. Beesotted are proud to support our local Foodbox charity and today we are asking Brentford fans to donate to their critical work, in exchange for a free Brentford book. A real no-brainer... helping a fantastic...

read more
Ceefax & The Wonder That Was Page 312

Ceefax & The Wonder That Was Page 312

Please spare a thought for us exiled supporters who have to stay up ‘til unearthly hours around the world, desperate to find out the Bees’ score. Admittedly myriad options are available to us that are now take for granted; live commentary via the excellent Bees...

The Bee Job Question

The Bee Job Question

Three weeks ago I had a job interview. An interview for a job I was actually quite interested in, rather than just being a way out of the harrowingly dull, underachieving job I have at the moment. I have by me now the letter that arrived today, which will tell me...

The Great Brentford Song Scam

The Great Brentford Song Scam

For years Brentford fans have constantly been evolving the songs they employ to support their team. Scientists and historians, such as myself, rarely take an interest in such forms of tribal worship. But, after being approached by Beesotted to take a closer look at...

1942 Leagues Under The Sea – John Chandler RIP

1942 Leagues Under The Sea – John Chandler RIP

 I was in the Navy during the War serving on H.M.S. Cairo (pictured above) when in 1942, Brentford played Portsmouth at Wembley, in the war-time F.A. Cup Final. I couldn’t attend as I was stationed in the Mediterranean around Gibraltar but my father went to the game...

About The Author

2 Comments

  1. Rob

    Well said Jim…a professional display in both creating chances and now defending leads. Another reason to our improving ability to take 3 points is that opposition teams actually have to create goals, not just be gifted them, and that flourishing partnership at CB. Let’s hope we hold on to those players that add creativity finishing and grit that make us a team in the truest sense of the word. And it’s great to see Romaine really looking the player DS knew he was. CoYB

    Reply
  2. -David Carney

    The message is on song again by JL and being under that radar could potentially have a strong positive effect if other teams under estimate Brentford – but in today’s competition I doubt opposing Coaches under estimate the Brentford threat at all.
    The negative of being under the radar can be very significant financially because:
    – It becomes more difficult to attract sponsors because sponsors want maximum exposure of their Brand, products and services
    – When sponsorships are achieved, the value would be less for an ‘under the radar’ team (read low exposure team)
    – Less games are televised on TV and less positive exposure is provided by other forms of media – the exact opposite of the purpose of a sponsorship.
    – The lower media exposure leads to lower interest in and hence a lower supporter base, which in turn leads to lower sponsorship opportunities. It really is a vicious circle.
    – Player valuations by clubs bidding for Brentford players are generally too low, leading quite often to a bit of a saga before transfers are finalised (think Hogan, Gray, Tarkowski)
    – etc, etc, etc.
    – In essence the sponsorship window of opportunity for sponsors of Brentford is a very crowded shared small area of West London where, unfortunately at present Brentford would still rank at #5 of the 5 teams. For Brentford there is no effective National awareness, let alone international awareness and these are the real drivers of sponsorship dollars. The Brentford reach is lousy and the supporter/follower interest base is close to worthless at present when compared to other teams competing for sponsorship dollars.
    Forget being under the radar. We are all proud to be lifelong Brentford supporters and we should be noisy about it – but never, never arrogant like so many teams supporters that Brentford compete against. Like it or not, Brentford needs exposure, awareness, a larger supporter base, positive media responses, good positive PR, etc, as well as success on the field because strong sponsorship income is another of the vital ingredients of financial success, which of course is vital for the long term success of the program implemented by Benhan and his band of merry men for Brentford to once again be a powerful and successful football club.
    My Dad used to talk about the Brentford team of the 30’s. I think that can be repeated again soon, but to do so Brentford must not be under the radar and must be financially robust.

    Reply

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Twitter

Beesotted Archive

Bees News Now