A game against the Champions of Europe and current Premier League leaders, Chelsea, is a test that Thomas Frank feels the squad will relish. Thomas sees The Blues as a world class outfit but says that won't change our desire to be on the front foot and take the game to our opponents. Listen below for the latest team news, all the match build-up, and Thomas' thoughts on why life is good in TW8.
Thomas on the squad latest
All the internationals came back well which is good. You always check the line-ups and cross your fingers that everyone comes back in one piece so that is extremely positive.
Shandon Baptiste dislocated his shoulder [against West Ham] and is out. Kristoffer Ajer and Vitaly Janelt should be available.
Thomas on the derby atmosphere
Every game in the Premier League is a big game but to face the European Champions and top of the league is a huge challenge that you really like to test yourself against. We got the team together today after the internationals and there’s a very nice atmosphere. Everyone is looking forward to Saturday.
A derby is always special, especially now it is a West London derby and at home. Our fans have been amazing; we need a top performance from them again. What I was extremely pleased with against Liverpool was, the two times we went behind, the noise was even higher for the next couple of minutes. That gave a boost to the lads, so they were ready to sprint again, to press again, and to believe again. No matter who you are, a world class player from Chelsea or a good Premier League player from Brentford, there are moments in the game when you are a little bit down mentally and that’s when you can get help from the fans.
Thomas on Chelsea’s threats
They are a team with world-class players in every position. They have one of the best managers in the world in Thomas Tuchel. I don’t think there is a weak spot. We love that challenge; we can’t wait for it.
They are a big threat from set-pieces with fantastic delivery and big aerial threat. They have a lot of tactical flexibility so they can really dominate a team in the build-up and breakthrough. With Romelu Lukaku they have real physicality and aerial threat and, on the transitions, they are a big threat. They can hit us from every angle.
Thomas on countering Chelsea’s threats
The day we won promotion through the Play-Off Final, they won the Champions League. I think that is the very picture of the difference between the two clubs. We are here to be an asset to the Premier League and the best way to do that is to be on the front foot, press, and try to attack them. We will try to do that as much as possible on Saturday. We will probably have to defend quite a few times in this game but the more we can get them running backwards the better.
With the offensive threat that they possess we need to defend very well. We also need to be brave and press high when we can. We have to want the ball in as many moments as possible. Most importantly, we need to be brave. We are playing against a world class team and, on paper, they are much better than us but in the end it is 11 vs 11. The braver we can be, showing that right mentality, the better chance we have of winning the game.
Thomas on belief in the team
I believed that we could get something out of the game against Liverpool and I also believe we can get something out of a game against Chelsea. The odds are more towards a win for Chelsea than a win for Brentford but I 100 per cent believe we can get something out of the game, hopefully three points. We are not going out there to put in a nice performance, do well, and everyone likes Brentford. We are going out there to try to win.
Thomas on Wissa
Wissa deserves so much praise for being there in that moment and scoring that goal. I don’t think I praised the actual finish which was a beautiful connection. It is not easy to stay calm in that moment and make a good connection so that shows a lot about him as a player. He is looking sharper and sharper. On the Friday before the game against West Ham, we played some small sided games and his team won 3-2, he scored all of them. On Tuesday when we played 11 vs 11 he scored two goals. He is fitter and presses better and better; I am really pleased with his development.
Thomas on the West Ham win
It is the best feeling to win in the last second of the game; those emotions are crazy. The big thing is that we went for it then we got the margin for the final goal. We had all ten players in the final third because we wanted to maximise and get the most out of it. It is part of us thinking offensively.
I’ve liked our approach so far, trying to be brave and positive and trying to attack the game. A very good example is what we did against West Ham, the way we went on the front foot and played forward. I am pleased we have showed that defensive solidness and been very aggressive in our pressing. If you want to achieve anything as a newly promoted team you need to defend.
Thomas on taking things one day at a time
We are living in the moment now and we need to perform now. We will do our very best to put in a top performance out there because we know we need a top performance to get anything out of the game. It will be fantastic if we can build on the momentum we have now. Getting a result would be fantastic but I want a performance and a result; if that is linked then there’s really something to build on.
There will no trains stopping at Kew Bridge, Brentford or Chiswick stations today while the M4 is closed all weekend between Junction 4B and 3.
In line with recent Premier League guidance, we will be conducting a limited number of COVID-19 status spot checks at our upcoming home games – including at the Chelsea game