Bees Head Coach reflects on Saturday’s 3-1 defeat at St James’ Park
Dean Smith admitted that his side gave themselves too much to do as two early goals set Newcastle United on their way to a 3-1 victory at St James’ Park this afternoon. Ciaran Clark was allowed to ghost in unchallenged to score the opener on 11 minutes before Dwight Gayle added a second five minutes later. Gayle tapped home a third just after the break, moments before Scott Hogan pulled one back for Smith’s side, as The Magpies wrapped up the points. Speaking after the game to Bees Player, Dean admitted that it was the manner of the goals his side conceded that left him most disappointed.
“I thought we actually started the game quite well,” said Dean. “In the first five minutes they turned the ball over a few times but we didn’t pick the final pass. Maxime Colin got a great cross in for Scott Hogan for the best chance of the opening stages but the manner in which we conceded the goals was what was really disappointing. They would be poor goals at any level. If you are coming to a place like Newcastle and conceding two goals like that then it is always going to be difficult. It was fair play to our lads after that because they kept it tight. We finished the first-half well. The next goal was going to be important. If we could have got it then it would give us hope but if they got it, they would be comfortable. It was another poor goal as Maxime Colin lost the ball on the edge of their box. Our recovery runs weren’t good enough and when you have players with pace like Dwight Gayle they will punish you.”
Brentford did pull one back early on in the second-half as Scott Hogan converted from close range for his eighth of the season. After that goal The Bees matched their hosts for much of the second-half but were unable to force enough pressure to find a way back into the match. With another match at Derby County in just four days time, Dean wants to take the positives from that second-half performance into the match at the iPro Stadium.
“There were some good things in today’s game and it will be a learning experience for sure,” said Dean. “It was just the manner of the goals that I was disappointed with. I am pleased that we scored with a set-piece: it is something that we work on. After that we had a little spell where we were on top but there wasn’t enough sustained pressure for me. What we can’t do is dwell on getting beat here by Newcastle United as we have got Derby County on Tuesday. We have to get ready for that but there were certainly some good points in the game.”
The Bees were backed by just shy of 2,800 travelling fans who made the journey up to the North East for the game. Dean said he was disappointed that those fans were sent home without much to cheer about but praised them for the support they gave the team.
“The fans were tremendous today,” said Dean. “You could hear them singing all through the game and the backing they gave us was tremendous. I am disappointed that we didn’t give them more to cheer about because I really fancied us coming here today. We are competitive in this league and we can compete against the likes of Newcastle United but we can’t give goals away like we did today.”