Many can be forgiven for forgetting that Brentford, famed for their smart and slick recruitment, have already potentially pulled off the coup of this summer’s transfer window.

It was announced in February that Igor Thiago would be joining the west Londoners from Club Brugge.

With Euro 2024 and the 2024 Copa América on the horizon, club football has been placed on the backburner for many, but UEFA recently named Thiago as the Europa Conference League Young Player of the Year for the 2023/24 campaign.

So, with Brentford looking to re-establish themselves back towards the top half of England’s top flight, excitement will already be building about what the former Cruzeiro and Ludogorets Razgrad attacker can bring to Gtech Community Stadium.

Thiago notched 18 goals in 34 Jupiler Pro League outings as Club Brugge went on to win the league title in a frankly extraordinary manner last season in what was his second full season in Europe, after scoring 15 in 32 in Bulgaria’s First League with the aforementioned Ludogorets.

As well as those 18 league goals, he also grabbed four in the cup and notched seven times in Europe in a stellar first campaign.

Aside from the numbers, there is a presence to Thiago’s game that, at just 22 years old, will have definitely alerted a club with the smarts of Brentford to his talent and potential.

In fact, that was even mentioned by Thomas Frank in his assessment of the signing back in February, when the Danish head coach described the Brazilian as a “hardworking and a very good pressing player.” Frank also discussed the “physical presence” of the striker and how he can “link the play”.

What will be even more impressive and pertinent to Brentford are the types of goals he scores. The Bees, when successful, especially during the 2022/23 campaign, bombard the opposition’s box. Only Newcastle United and Arsenal in that campaign took more shots than Brentford from within the six-yard box and over 20 per cent of Brentford’s total shots that season came from within the six-yard box - the greatest share of any team in the Premier League.

It will not have escaped Brentford’s scouting team, therefore, that seven of Thiago’s 11 non-penalty goals in the Jupiler Pro League last season came from within the six-yard area for Club Brugge and there will be a hope that he can be an effective so-called ‘fox in the box’ for Frank’s side.

Specifically, in the UEFA Europa Conference League ‘proper’, only eventual top scorer and winner of the competition Ayoub El Kaabi, as well as Eren Zahavi, Bruno Petkovic and Club Brugge team-mate Hans Vanaken, scored more than Thiago.

The Brazilian scored five goals in 10 games as the Belgian side made it to the semi-final, and also delivered an assist in his 758 minutes of Conference League action.