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Thomas Talks… bravery and the Dynamic Duo

Report from the post-match written press conference after win at Wolves

20 September 2021

Brentford picked up their first away win as a Premier League side with victory at Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday. Ivan Toney scored a penalty and then set up a second for Bryan Mbeumo. After the game, Thomas Frank spoke to the written press via a video call. Jim Levack, who has covered Brentford for many years for Press Association, among others, reports on what Thomas had to say..........

Bravery

“I’m thrilled with the result. We top performed and were by far the best side in the first half, scored two, had two disallowed but it was the bravery and way we played with presence that made me most proud of that performance.”

Bravery plus

"The red card changed the dynamic and we had to defend even more but I can’t praise the players enough for the determination and fight, especially after the sending off when we were still brave, still played 4-3-2 and tried to go for a third. So when you look at the whole game away to a very good Wolves team, and we take a fully deserved win that’s a fantastic achievement.”

Defending high and low

“It says a lot about the players and also those coming off bench in Zanka, Mads Roerslev and Frank Onyeka who were ready to step in, that Wolves had no shots on target. We have that defensive mentality where we want to press and defend as high as possible away from our goal, but we can also defend box when needed and that’s a massive thing we need to continue with. We defended very well with bodies on the line and made the pitch smaller with our willingness to run and work hard.”

Zanka very much for the clean sheet

“The last 20 minutes we had to defend well and focus. That’s why we decided to get Zanka, a very good, experienced centre back capable of stepping in to add calm, control, leadership and communication and some fantastic clearances. That was very good to see.”

Toney the MotD Tiger

“Ivan is doing okay… naagh he was ten out of ten. I’m extremely pleased with him. The person behind the player is fantastic too – top mentality, unbelievable presence on the pitch and what an assist for Bryan.”

Dynamic Duo

“Once again we saw the relationship between Ivan and Bryan. They are the dynamic duo like Yorke and Cole (also see Francis and Towers, Forster and Taylor, Holdsworth and Blissett) so on day when we perform well and they scored a goal each, we’re extremely pleased.”

Bryan sparing my blushes…

“I’d been asked about Bryan last week and in the build-up so before the game I said to him ‘please score today, it will make it so much easier for me’. I have big belief in him and to be honest he should have got at least one more, could have slid Ivan in and then hit bar so another top performance.”

Game management

“I have to praise (Wolves manager) Bruno Lage. He’s had a fantastic coaching career and is an excellent coach in every aspect, but I could ask him what he would have done if he was leading a newly-promoted team, a bus stop in Hounslow, playing against a side established in the Premier League with ten times our budget, leading 2-0 away, 10 v 11.

I think his players would lose a bit of time also. But I could also ask him how the first half went. You look at the game and did we deserve to win? Yes. Expected goals, big chances, everything.”

No surprises

“I believe in my boys, in the team and whole squad so surprising me is not the word. They constantly impress me because I know how much they are capable of and the potential they have. If people are surprised because we are a bus stop in Hounslow and we have the lowest budget by a mile, then I agree. But it’s impressive we have eight points after five games, three clean sheets – should have been four – and performed consistently well I think it says a lot about the job we’re doing, but we’re also humble so we only celebrate for 24 hours and then it’s back to work.”

Injury snips

“Pontus Jansson is fine no problems and Rico Henry had a minor issue with his ankle and was on a yellow.”


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