One of the youngest members of the Brentford FC Hall of Fame was the latest to help us with our Farewell Griffin Park countdown. At every home league match in 2019/20 we are counting down to the final game at Griffin Park. This will include using a special display which will be updated at each remaining league match. The Farewell Griffin Park countdown was changed to seven as we drew with Leeds United last week and Sam Saunders was the man with the numbers in hand.
Sam has a long history with Brentford FC that began more than a decade ago. He is currently B Team Assistant Coach, a role he took on last summer after retiring from professional football. The 36-year-old spent just short of eight years with The Bees as a player, wearing the number seven shirt, and made such an impact that he was inducted in to the Club’s Hall of Fame a few months after leaving.
Sam first joined Brentford in the summer of 2009, arriving on a free transfer from Dagenham and Redbridge. While not always first choice, he amassed 206 appearances for The Bees before leaving in early 2017. He spent two years at Wycombe Wanderers before ending his career at Colchester United last summer and returning to West London.
Sam was part of the Brentford squad that reached the 2011 Johnstone’s Paint Trophy Final and played for The Bees in the 2013 League One Play-Off Final loss to Yeovil Town. A year later he played his part in helping Brentford win promotion to the second tier for the first time in more than two decades and played 38 games for The Bees in the Championship before leaving. He played for Wycombe on loan when they reached the League Two Play-Off Final in 2015 and help them win promotion when he joined permanently in.
Sam finished his career with more than 300 EFL games under his belt and is now working with the next generation of Brentford players. He coaches Brentford’s up-and-coming players contracted to the B Team and is seeking to bring the next youngsters through to the First Team. He may even have a future Hall of Fame member in the ranks.