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“It was a really nice three points”

18 March 2017

Dean Smith reflects on a remarkable afternoon at The Pirelli Stadium

Brentford Head Coach Dean Smith said that the threat of extra training over the international break helped to kick-start The Bees second-half comeback as four unanswered goals took the points at The Pirelli Stadium. Brentford trailed 3-1 at the break after conceding three from set-pieces against The Brewers. However, Sergi Canos’s second of the game, a double from Lasse Vibe, and one for Jota completed a remarkable turnaround in the East Midlands.

Speaking to Bees Player after the match, Dean said: “We started off really well. I thought that we controlled the game and controlled the ball. We knew that they were a threat from set pieces. I was disappointed with how we dealt with set pieces. They won two corners from throw ins and then I was disappointed with how we dealt with the corners. It was a well worked routine but we knew that they did that and unfortunately the people who were marking didn’t do their job properly. We could have gone in thinking that the world is against us and that we weren’t doing things properly but I didn’t think that was the case. I have a great belief in this bunch of players and how they can play. I threatened them with a few days in over the break and I got a good performance.”

The Brentford boss resisted the urge to make changes at the break, despite the two-goal deficit. Dean knew that he did have options off the bench to change things if needed but felt his decision was vindicated by his team’s second-half showing and the impact of his substitutes when they did come on.

“The easiest thing to do would have been to change it but we had clear heads with myself, Richard O’Kelly, Thomas Frank and Simon Royce,” said Dean. “We had to remember that it was three set-pieces. We had to sort that out which we did. I said to the players that goals shouldn’t change your mindset: you have to keep doing what you are trying to do. I told them to play how they can play and play with a bit more energy and enthusiasm and we certainly did that. I thought it was the right decision not to change but I also knew that we had pace on the bench that could make an impact. Nico Yennaris certainly gives you an impact with his pace and energy. Florian Jozefzoon was electric and they couldn’t live with his pace. It was great to have Alan McCormack back in the frame with his experience and knowledge of the game. He breaks up play and we go and score the fifth. It was a really nice three points today.”

This afternoon’s victory ends a two game losing run ahead of the final international break of the season. Dean admitted it was nice to go into the break on the back of a win.

“It gives the group a big boost because we knew that we weren’t at our best on Tuesday,” said Dean. “Wolves’ win at Fulham today shows that they are defying where they are in the table. I changed it around because a few people looked a bit leggy. I spoke to the players at half-time and said that we don’t want to go into a break on the back of a defeat and they certainly put that right.”

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