“I hope that the stadium will be full and that we can get the three points”
Brentford defender Maxime Colin is excited for his first experience of a Boxing Day fixture in England but admits it will be all the sweeter if it is accompanied by three points. The French right-back was absent from The Bees line-up 12 months ago due to injury but has impressed as an almost ever-present this season. The 25-year-old’s family will be in the crowd at Griffin Park for the visit of Cardiff City next Monday and Maxime said he is really looking forward to the festive football coming up.
“Last year I was in the stand on Boxing Day: this year I hope I am on the pitch,” said Maxime, speaking to Bees Player ahead of the match. “I will really enjoy these two games at home over Christmas. All my family will be over for Christmas so it will be nice to play in front of them. In Belgium and France you don’t play for a week or ten days but it isn’t really a break because you play on 2 January. You are with your family for Christmas but it isn’t like a holiday. I enjoy the fact that we don’t break and we keep playing over Christmas. It will be nice to spend time with my family over Christmas as I don’t see them a lot but it will be even better with a win.”
The Bees head into the game on the back of wins over Burton Albion and Bristol City and a last-minute defeat to Leeds United at Elland Road. Those three matches saw The Bees field a back three which Maxime admits, while not being perfect yet, is a system the players are getting more and more accustomed to.
“The week has started well, the mood is good, and we are training well,” said Maxime. “We are trying to work more on our new shape than specifically the game against Leeds. We tried this formation a little bit in pre-season but then we started with four at the back but now we are trying a new shape. I don’t think it is more difficult to do it during the season because we have the players to play with the new shape. We need to adapt. It is not perfect so far but it is not at all like we are ridiculous with the new shape. We need to keep going the same way and hopefully the results will come.”
Cardiff City are the visitors to Griffin Park on Monday with Neil Warnock’s men sitting just outside the relegation zone thanks to an upturn in form under the well-travelled manager. After a run of four without a win at home, Maxime is keen to build on the success against Burton Albion in TW8 ten days ago.
“It is much better to be at home than away on Boxing Day,” said Maxime. “I hope that the stadium will be full and that we can get the three points. Every game in the Championship is really difficult and this will be another one. We know that we can score a lot of goals, especially with Scott Hogan. We know that if we can keep a clean sheet, especially at home, we always have a chance to score. Everybody has to focus first on keeping the clean sheet and then opportunities will come for us. We started the season really well at home and we really brought the fans with us. We had a bit of a bad spell but now hopefully we are back to being good and having a good record at home. If we can keep a clean sheet and not give away sloppy goals then we have a big chance to win the game.”