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Match Previews

Match Preview: Southampton U23 v Brentford B

The Bees head to the North West to face The Saints on neutral soil

2 August 2017

Kevin O'Connor's team went five from five in pre-season, they now travel to Chester for their first regular season game against Southampton Under-23s

With The Saints on a training camp in Cheshire, Brentford B's first game of August has them on the road to the North of England for a match against a team from the South.

The Opposition

Southampton U23 play in the Premier League 2, Division Two, made up of Under-23 sides including Reading, Newcastle United and Aston Villa. Their fixtures officially begin on Monday 14 August 2017.

Last season, The Saints second-string were relegated from Division One after finishing bottom of the table but were only a single point from safety. The Royals were only relegated with them because their goal difference of -20 was worse than Tottenham's -11, Southampton finished on -10. A win on the final day of the season could have saved them, but they lost 4-2 to league runners-up Manchester City.

The squad are also slated to participate in the 17/18 Checkatrade Trophy.

The Boss

Technical Director Martin Hunter is the man in charge of the team, with former player Radhi Jaidi as his assistant.

Hunter has experience with Bradford City, Stoke City, Watford and The Football Association. He was also at Norwich City for a period of time, during which he managed the First Team on an interim basis in 2006 after the sacking of Nigel Worthington. He became a part of the Southampton youth setup four years later.

Jaidi was a centre-back in his playing days between 1993 and 2012, capped over 100 times for his country. The Tunisian spent spent three seasons with The Saints before retiring during the 2011/12 campaign, struggling since the beginning with injury trouble. He remained at the club to pursue a coaching role.

Brentford B

After Saturday's 1-0 win over Dulwich Hamlet, Ellery Balcombe remains the only player to have played every minute for the squad so far this season. Ilias Chatzitheodoridis is also the only other player now to have started every game. 

Eight players have scored 15 goals between them, Marcus Forss and Ali Coote both joint-top with four each. The team have only conceded two goals so far, one a penalty at Chelsea and one to Slovak side MSK Zilina.

New Danish signing Mads Bech Sorensen has travelled with the team and is available for selection, while the squad remains without the services of Henrik Johansson - still recovering from injury.

Match coverage

A full match report will appear on after the game. Fans can also follow updates on Twitter (@brentfordfc) and via the match centre, which can be viewed here: Match Centre.

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