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First Team

“We are on a good roll”

Andreas Bjelland previews Sunderland’s visit to Griffin Park

20 October 2017

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Andreas Bjelland wants to carry on The Bees recent momentum as Sunderland make the long trip to West London on Saturday afternoon. Dean Smith’s side are unbeaten in five in the league and picked up a first home success of the campaign last time out against Millwall. Andreas feels the side have turned a corner in recent weeks and is targeting another three points on home soil as The Black Cats head to Griffin Park.

“We are unbeaten in the last five games and are starting to play better and better,” Andreas told iFollow Brentford. “We are on a good roll. Hopefully we can continue how we have been playing. Especially as, at home, it is a game that we need to win. We need to do it our way, as we did against Millwall. Hopefully we can do it for the whole game and not just for 60 minutes. If we do that then I have no doubt that we are going to win. They are a big club but I think that we have showed what we are good at. Hopefully they fear us too: they would be stupid not to. We are just going to go out from the start and hopefully dictate the game.”

The Bees have conceded just two goals in Andreas’s last six Sky Bet Championship appearances, keeping four clean sheets along the way. With stiff competition from Yoann Barbet, John Egan, and Chris Mepham, Andreas feels nobody in that backline can let their standards slip or they face losing their starting spot.

“It is a big part of my game as a central defender to keep clean sheets, alongside Daniel Bentley,” said Andreas. “When we have so much ball the rest defence is a big thing for us. We have got better and better and hopefully we can continue doing that. Chris Mepham has come up from the B Team and done really well in the games that he has played. He is a young talent who is doing well and hopefully from the games he gets a little bit more experience. With the other three of us it is just good to have competition. Everyone has done well in the games that they have played. That competition helps us to stay sharp and stay on top of our game.”

At international level, Andreas has also been a key part of Denmark’s qualification for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Play-Offs, playing every minute in three of their last four group games. The Play-Off draw has pitted Andreas, as well as fellow Danes Henrik Dalsgaard and Lasse Vibe, up against John Egan, Alan Judge, and the Republic of Ireland, but Andreas is not thinking about that yet.  

“It is going to be interesting,” admitted Andreas. “We have been joking around with the guys from Ireland but, more than that, right now our focus is here. We need to do well here and keep performing. Hopefully then we can get selected and be ready for the games when we get to that.” 

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