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First Team

🗣"We’ve talked about focusing on ourselves and what we can affect"

Thomas Frank on our lunchtime visit from Forest

20 March 2021

Thomas Frank admits that playing first this weekend does have its advantages but only if The Bees can take full advantage with three points against Nottingham Forest at lunchtime today. The Bees boss knows that Forest will pose a tough challenge with their impressive defensive record this campaign and feels today will be about taking chances when they come along.

Thomas on Nottingham Forest ...

A lot of games are down to the fine margins but this one will be especially as the difference between the teams is very little. Chris Hughton is well known for his top organisation; they have only conceded 11 goals in 18 games and conceded very few chances. It will be a tough one. When we are in the decisive areas it is about a good decision, a good cross, a good pass, and, of course, the right finish.

Thomas on any advantage to playing early ...

No matter what we need to put in a good performance and put in everything we can to win the game. It is a tiny bit nicer leaning back after three points and watching but you can’t think too much about that. We’ve talked about keeping the noise away, focusing on ourselves and then what we can affect. That is the message we keep re-enforcing.

Thomas on the international break ...

It is what it is with the internationals. We, and myself in particular, are proud of all the players getting called up for their countries; it is a big thing. Of course, this season is more cramped than ever so this round could have been pushed to the autumn instead of playing the Nations League. Hopefully the players will come back with new energy. Nobody is being allowed to travel anywhere so maybe seeing something different, in a different country, will energise them. We will keep our fingers crossed that they come back in one piece.

Thomas on Ethan Pinnock and his call-up ...

Ethan’s mentality is remarkable; looking at him now and knowing him as a person, you can just see, compared to players coming through the Academy who have had nothing but success, that Ethan has been out in the real life. He has had setbacks and built his way through. He started when he came here and we played a back three but then we went to a back four and he went onto the bench. There were no complaints, he trained like a beast every day and he was ready when he got the chance. He never looked back from there. I can see from those coming through the lower ranks that they have a different mindset and approach.

Thomas on Ollie Watkins call-up

Ollie Watkins is a prime example of what I say to the team about showing that confident but humble attitude. They believe in themselves but are humble for every test that is thrown towards them. I really hope that players see we walk the walk with the model and the strategy we have here at Brentford. We are very interested in developing the person as a player; we are experienced in it now and have a good model in place. I think that we are a top step for a lot of players.

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