“In football nothing is impossible. If you believe to the last second of every game, you have a chance to do something good.”
That post-match comment from Brentford skipper Pontus Jansson summed up the never-say-die attitude that’s seeing The Bees hailed as a breath of fresh air in the Premier League. Pontus spoke to the written media after The Bees drew with Liverpool on Saturday. The memorable 3-3 draw saw Brentford come from behind twice to take a point.
“Before the first game, none of us had played in the Premier League before so you don’t know how good you are as an individual or team,” admitted the Swede. “The win over Arsenal gave us lot of confidence and we’ve just bounced from that. We know we’re a hard team to beat and I am loving every moment. We just have to keep doing what we’re doing because there are no easy games.”
Pontus is thrilled to be leading a side packed with young, fearless talent, but had a word of warning for any team-mates thinking the Bees have arrived: “We feel we are good enough to compete at this level but if we don’t do our job 100 per cent it’s going to be hard. We’re not ranked as one of best teams in the league but if we’re clever, take it game by game and compete every game, we have a good chance of having a good season.”
Pontus revealed he shared some words of wisdom with his team-mates when Liverpool went ahead for the second time: “I think we gave away one or two too many chances at 3-2 so I told them we had to stay in the game and not give away a 4-2. If we stay in it and stay solid as individuals, as a team and fans, we have too much quality up front and you can always get a chance. If we are two goals away it’s going to be harder, but at one behind we only need one chance and today we took it.”
Pontus, at 30 one of the most experienced players in the squad, is relishing being part of such a talented young group, but insisted the early success will not go to anyone’s head.
He said: “I’m one of the oldest players but what the young lads have, I don’t have – they don’t care who they play against, big teams or players. They just go out and think they are one of the best players in the world, and I like that so much. They are probably the ones talking about the top six so I have to keep them calm and keep their feet on the ground. It’s a good mix of me being realistic and them dreaming, and I like it so much.”
Pontus stressed the importance of Brentford's first goal, a routine straight off the training ground: “We’re a big, tall team and we know we are dangerous so we use lot of time on the training ground because we know we can hurt the better teams that way, so it’s nice to see it worked.”
At the other end it’s the desire to defend as a unit that has impressed Pontus the most: “Everyone loves to defend, from David Raya at the back up to Ivan Toney, because a clean sheet and good defensive performance is massive for everyone. It sends a message that we’re a unique team and have massive togetherness. It’s fun to play in these games and training every day is nice because of that unique togetherness. This Club really is something special.”