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Match Previews

Match Preview: Middlesbrough

All the information you need ahead of Saturday's match

16 March 2018

Brentford host Middlesbrough at Griffin Park this weekend with only nine games to go in the Sky Bet Championship. The Bees are going after their first win in three games in this 3 o'clock kick-off.

The Opposition

Boro are back on the hunt for Premier League football after dropping out of the division last season. Sixth as things stand, Tony Pulis' side have won three of their last four matches and come into this match with striker Patrick Bamford in top form.

On 30 September, Chris Mepham made his full league debut as The Bees managed a 2-2 draw at The Riverside Stadium. Yoann Barbet scored in the first half before Martin Braithwaite levelled after the interval. Ollie Watkins had Brentford's second but former Manchester United fullback Fábio equalised with quarter of an hour to go.

Boro's last three wins have come against three clubs in the bottom half of the Championship; Leeds United, Hull City and Birmingham City. They also drew 3-3 with Sunderland on 24 February.

Team News

Andreas Bjelland is a doubt for this weekend's match after picking up an injury in the 1-0 defeat to Millwall last weekend. Alan Judge and Lewis Macleod have both got minutes in recent months after returning from long-term injuries, and could be in line for a start as the season draws to a close.

Fullback Tom Field played 90 minutes for Brentford B in the week against Kelty Hearts before returning to London, and he could get himself in the matchday squad for Saturday.

27-year-old Boro defender Daniel Ayala is facing a struggle to prove his fitness ahead of the weekend match after missing training with a groin strain. 

There were doubts over duo Mo Besic and Patrick Bamford with both complaining of hamstring trouble, but they have come through the week in good health and will be available this weekend.

Rudy Gestede was lost to a season-ending injury last month and backup striker Britt Assombalonga has reportedly had talks with the manager this week about his place in the side.

The Manager

Tony Pulis is a veteran manager appointed by Boro on Boxing Day 2017 after the departure of Garry Monk. His previous three clubs include Stoke City, Crystal Palace and most recently West Bromwich Albion. He has also held posts at Plymouth Argyle, Bristol City and Gillingham.

A former defender with appearances for Bristol Rovers and Newport County, Pulis has gained a reputation in football for getting good results despite tight financial restrictions. His aim with Middlesbrough is to return them to top flight football at the first time of asking, something he last acheived with Stoke in 2008.

Pre-Match Views

Dean Smith: 'it certainly becomes a very big game for us'

Stats Zone: all the numbers ahead of Saturday's kick-off

Opposition View: Paul Fraser of The Northern Echo talks to us about Boro

Ticket News

It’s our St Patrick’s Day fixture tomorrow and availability in some areas of the ground is now limited with the away stand sold out. With tickets still available from £23 Adults and only £6 Juniors, securing a seat now ensures you don't spend an extra £5 when the price increases (except Juniors).

What’s more, we’re now starting to resell tickets that have been returned by Season Ticket Holders. So if you’re a Season Ticket Holder and can’t attend tomorrow’s game, don’t forget to return yours to save on your 2018/19 Season Ticket.

Read more about our Ticket Exchange here.

End of Season Sale

As part of the St Patrick’s Day celebration on Saturday, you will be able to buy a 2017/18 green Away Shirt in our Stadium Shop for £20 Adults and £15 Juniors (in store only on Saturday 17 March). Read more about the end of season sale here.

Match Coverage

iFollow will be providing commentary from Griffin Park from 2.30pm with Matchday Live hosted by Mark Burridge. Mark's guests this weekend will be former Bee Marcus Gayle and Mick Cabble.

Download the Official Brentford FC App to get notifications direct to your phone, plus all the latest news, views and reaction from the game. Visit the Play Store or iTunes App Store now to download.


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