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“If we played them ten times again, we would beat them nine times”

26 November 2016

Dean on this afternoon’s 2-1 defeat to Birmingham City

Brentford Head Coach Dean Smith was at a loss to explain how his side were left empty handed after this afternoon's defeat to Birmingham City at Griffin Park. Clayton Donaldson won, and then converted, a first-half penalty to give Blues an early advantage which was doubled just after the break when Ryan Shotton slammed home at the back post. Scott Hogan halved the arrears with 15 minutes to play but, despite intense late pressure, Blues defence held on to extend their recent good record against Brentford.

“I have no idea how we didn’t win the game,” said Dean, speaking to Bees Player after the match. “I am disappointed and frustrated but pleased with the performance. The players played really well and Birmingham City rode their luck. If we played them ten times again we would beat them nine times: It was that one sided. Games change on small moments. There was a sloppy touch, sloppy pass, and we didn’t react quickly enough for their penalty. Our reaction to going a goal down was very good: we got between their lines really well and made them change their formation. We had chances where we should have scored but we didn’t take them. We hit the woodwork, had the ball cleared off the woodwork and their keeper has made a few really good saves.”

Against Gary Rowett’s side, Dean moved to three at the back with Yoann Barbet and Maxime Colin employed as wing-backs. The Bees Head Coach felt the change worked well, which was reflected in the performance, if not the result. 

“I though the system worked today,” said Dean. “It is disappointing and frustrating when you go off 1-0 down having played really well. It is a travesty that we didn’t get the three points today. The system game us more players playing in their natural positions, aside maybe from Yoann Barbet. Andreas Bjelland has been playing at left-back which isn’t his natural position. I felt with them playing two up front that it was a game we could get on the ball and cause problems for them with Romaine Sawyers and Lasse Vibe getting into little pockets. Scott Hogan worked the front line really well. I thought it was working really well and we were going to get our rewards.”

Despite the defeat, which means The Bees are now without a win at home in four matches, Dean refused to be downbeat and said the fans reaction to the performance showed that his team’s effort were well appreciated.

“We have played two weekends, Blackburn Rovers and Birmingham City, and we should be sitting here really pleased with six points,” said Dean. “However, we are here with zero and that is the Championship. I came off the pitch today really disappointed but the supporters are clapping the players because of how we played today. The only disappointing thing today was the result. The supporters got behind us, especially when we got the goal. There was an obvious disappointment going in at half-time a goal down, and when we conceded the second but they can see that the players are giving everything and should have won the game.”

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