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Match Previews

Match Preview: Reading U23 vs Brentford B

Bees face Royals away from home this afternoon

18 September 2018

Brentford B travel down the M4 today to face Reading Under-23s in a behind-closed-doors match at Hogwood Park. The game kicks off at 2pm, with Moses Odubajo, Reece Cole and Mads Bech Sorensen set to feature for Kevin O'Connor's side.

The Opposition

The Royals youth squad is part of the Premier League 2 setup, currently playing in Division Two of the two-tiered system. Last season they managed to secure fifth place, a promotion play-off spot, before losing 4-3 to Aston Villa in the Semi-Finals.

The 2018/19 campaign so far has them in exactly the same spot in the table. They are fifth after winning against Newcastle United and Sunderland, drawing with Manchester United and Wolves, and losing to Norwich City. They are also competing in the Premier League International Cup, in Group B with Feyenoord, Sparta Prague and Leicester City.

The Bees have played Reading's U23 side five times since the B Team was created in 2016, winning four and losing just one. During the 16/17 campaign, Flemming Pedersen took charge of the first 2-1 win at Hogwood Park before O'Connor competed the double with a 4-1 thumping later that year.

Last season, Brentford B secured a 3-1 win away from home before getting their biggest ever victory in a 9-1 thrashing at Jersey Road. Emiliano Marcondes, Tom Field and Lewis Macleod all scored braces after Alan Judge had opened the scoring. Zain Westbrooke and Reece Cole then completed things in the final five minutes of time. Adrian Popa scored the only away goal, netting in the 90th minute.

Last time out it was a 3-2 win for The Royals, their first over Brentford B while also battling torrential rain in Berkshire. Bradley Clayton had opened the scoring early on, before Reading levelled from the spot. Herson Rodrigues Alves then failed to convert a spot-kick of his own, only for the hosts to burst down the other end and score themselves. Both Clayton and Jarvis Edobor hit the woodwork in the early stages of the second half before Reading scored again on the hour mark. Theo Archibald struck from long range to try and spark a comeback but the sodden Bees couldn't muster a third goal and it ended in a home win.

Opposition Boss

Scott Marshall is in charge of Reading U23, a familiar name to Brentford fans having spent four years at Griffin Park between 1999 and 2003. The former defender started his career at Arsenal before loan spells with Rotherham United, Oxford United and Sheffield United. Southampton took him on for a season, before another loan agreement took him to Celtic.

He moved to Griffin Park in October 1999, brought in by Ron Noades as a replacement for the outgoing Hermann Hreidarsson, and went on to make 94 appearances, scoring seven times. At the end of the 2002/03 season, he left the Club when his contract expired and signed for Wycombe Wanderers under Tony Adams.

Scott returned to TW8 to take up a youth coaching role with Brentford in 2007, before moving back to coaching with Wycombe and then Norwich City. He moved to Aston Villa in 2013 and, following the sacking of Paul Lambert, had a stint as Caretaker Manager alongside Andy Marshall in February 2015. He left the Midlands later that month. In September 2017, he joined Reading, taking the position he still holds today.

Brentford B

The Bees come into this one having lost 3-1 to Huddersfield Town EDT in their last match at home, but also after a double victory over AFC Bournemouth in the two prior to that. Reece Cole scored the only goal at Jersey Road last week, another of his free-kicks sailing in from the edge of the box.

Moses Odubajo is enjoying a spell at right-back while he continues his journey back to full fitness, having signed for Brentford in the summer. Jaakko Oksanen could return to the side having missed the last match, Canice Carroll stood in as defensive midfielder for our last game. Charlie Oliver is yet to make his Bees debut, while Jarvis Edobor was an unused sub against the Terriers. Both could be in contention to start in the back line this afternoon.

Pre-Match Feature

B Team Head Coach Kevin O'Connor spoke to us this month about the progress of Brentford B so far this season. Watch the video below to catch up on his thoughts about player pathways, upcoming tours and future development plans.

Match Coverage

There will be live updates on Brentford's Twitter feed @brentfordfc between 2-5pm, as well as full interviews and match highlights on Brentford's YouTube Channel after the final whistle. Live behind the scenes coverage can be found on our new dedicated Instagram Channel @brentfordbteam.

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