Alan McCormack looks ahead to Saturday’s match against Blackburn Rovers
Alan McCormack described training this week as ‘exceptional’ after the players organised a team meeting on Monday morning in the wake of last week’s 3-0 derby defeat to Queens Park Rangers. The Bees go into Saturday’s match with Blackburn Rovers on the run of three straight league defeats and Alan said the team know that it hasn’t been good enough in recent weeks. Alan, who made his return to fitness in the defeat to Rangers, said he shared the blame for Saturday’s defeat but felt the players had responded well to the defeat.
“It was nice to be back out there but that doesn’t take away what happened at the end of the game,” said Alan, speaking to Bees Player ahead of the match. “We lost 3-0 and I was a part of that defeat. I take that blame, regardless of being out for a length of time. When you are in a game and you lose you are part of the loss. Our response this week has been phenomenal.
“We had a players meeting on Monday morning. We all sat on our own and we said what needed to be done: what needed to happen this week and every week towards the end of the season. Jake Bidwell called it and a few people said a few things. We spoke about what we are good at and what we need to do better. Everyone wants to win as much as the player beside them. The attitude of the players in training on Monday, Tuesday and today has been exceptional and it looks like it has sunk in and we know the challenges that lie ahead. Hopefully the player’s attitude leads into Saturday and we can get maximum points.”
Alan returned from nearly three months out injured in the defeat at Loftus Road to add experience to what is otherwise a young Brentford midfield. The Dublin-born midfielder has developed a reputation as a leader but he says that first and foremost he has to focus on his own game and then try and lead by example.
“If you spend too much time trying to control things then your own game gets affected,” said Alan. “I try and worry about my own game and try to lead by example by doing the things that I am strong at. Hopefully that is a rolling effect to others but others have that effect on me. Alan Judge or Josh McEachran will come up with some unbelievable stuff and you want to up your game. Everybody does those things on the pitch and has that effect on everybody else. I have to play my game and then try and lead with the talking after that.”
Alan is out of contract in the summer and revealed that he is on the verge of triggering an automatic clause in his contract to see him stay in West London for another year. The 32-year-old midfielder is also studying for his coaching badges at the moment but insists he has no plans to hang up the boots any time soon.
“Everybody knows how I feel about the club,” said Alan. “It is down to the club what they want to do. I have five games to play before it becomes automatic. There is an option for next year which I am very happy to do either now or at the end of the season. I am doing my coaching badges and I am doing another one in the summer. I want to prolong my career in football after my playing days. With the Youth Team, Development Squad and the facilities here it is an exceptional place to be. I have still got many years left in me to play so by the time I am finished playing I will be ready to go with the coaching and have a lot more experience.”
Bees Player subscribers can watch the full interview with Alan below