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“We have dropped two points today”

Dean Smith on this afternoon’s goalless stalemate at home to Barnsley

16 December 2017

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Brentford Head Coach Dean Smith felt this afternoon was a tale of missed chances as his side couldn’t find a way past a defensively-minded Barnsley at Griffin Park. Neal Maupay, Ollie Watkins, and Yoann Barbet all went close in the first-half and it was a similar story after the break with Adam Davies, and the rest of the Barnsley defence, repelling everything that came their way. In the end, The Bees had to settle for a point as The Tykes left West London with what they had set out to achieve.

“I thought we played really well in the first-half and created a number of chances which we didn’t take,” Dean told iFollow Brentford after the game. “It was a combination of poor finishing, good goalkeeping, some bits of bad luck, and some where they got their bodies in the way. Second-half we tried to keep that going and I thought we were still the better team. We had a five or six minute period when Josh Clarke got injured where I think that we lost our way a little bit. We became a bit panicky and they flashed a few across the face of goal. We got hold of the ball towards the end and created another few chances. It is disappointing because we feel like we have dropped two points today. We need to be aware that there will be teams who come here and don’t try to play us in a football game because we do that well.”

This afternoon saw a first Sky Bet Championship start for Josh McEachran since August as he replaced Kamohelo Mokotjo from last weekend’s defeat at Hull City. Including Josh in the starting XI also enabled Ryan Woods to be moved further up the pitch, something which Dean felt worked well, especially in the opening 45 minutes.

“I just felt that Josh McEachran deserved a start today,” explained Dean. “Ryan Woods has been fantastic this season but over the last few weeks he has been targeted as our main player and stopped from playing. We decided to move him on one and bring in Josh. In the first-half we were excellent and Ryan, in a more advanced role, was a part of that.”

This afternoon’s draw means that it’s now ten games since The Bees were beaten in the league on home soil, a run which goes all the way back to the second week of August. However, Smith’s side have only managed to register three home wins in that run, which The Bees Head Coach feels has really been holding them back this campaign.

Asked about extending the unbeaten run, and a sixth clean sheet of the season, Dean said: “I thought that we looked solid all game. I’ve had Tom Bradshaw before and he works his socks off. He did that today and we had to deal with that. I thought the two centre-halves did well. Not losing is the positive but we are drawing too many games. We need to turn those draws into wins and today was one of those games. We have to be more clinical in front of goal. If we had been more clinical in front of goal today we would have won the game.” 

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