The Bees are back in FA Cup action tomorrow night when they welcome Championship side Brentford to a packed-out The Hive London in the fourth round.
What an FA Cup run it is proving to be. It all started in October 2018 with a 4-2 victory over Braintree Town in the final qualifying round before we took League One side Bristol Rovers to a replay after a 1-1 home draw. Goals from Craig Robson and Byron Harrison saw us beat the odds for the first time this campaign to book our place in Round 2, winning 2-1 at the Memorial Stadium.
An early goal from Dan Sparkes at the next hurdle saw us edge out Stockport County, progressing to the third round for the first time in 11 years. Sheffield United awaited us at the next stage of the tournament with a victory seemingly a distant dream. However, after Shaq Coulthirst netted from the spot in the first half, we held on to cause the biggest upset of the round. The only non-league side left in the competition, our journey continues tomorrow as we aim to cause another shock.
The last time these two sides met in a competitive league fixture was back in March 2009, Brentford winning that League Two fixture 1-0 with Marcus Bean scoring the only goal of the game.
They finished that season top of the table on 85 points, gaining promotion to League One whilst we secured a 17th placed finish.
The two sides have met more recently in a Johnstone’s Paint Trophy Area semi-final in 2011, drawing 0-0 at Underhill before Barnet won the following penalty shootout 5-3.
Manager: Thomas Frank
Thomas Frank joined Brentford just over two years ago, initially taking up the role as Assistant Head Coach alongside Richard O’Kelly.
However, when Dean Smith left the club to join Aston Villa in October 2018, the Dane took the reins.
Before Brentford, Frank helped Denmark develop their upcoming talents, taking charge of their Under-16s, Under-17s and Under-19s in three separate spells. Following his time with Denmark’s youngsters, he was gifted the managerial role at Brondby IF. He helped the Danish side clinch a 4th and 3rd place finish in 2014 and 2015 respectively in the Superliga before leaving the club.
One to Watch: Neal Maupay
What a season Neal Maupay is having. The 22-year-old has already found the net 16 times in the league this season, making him one of the top scorers in the division and our one to watch ahead of tomorrow’s tie.
It was the talented youngster who bagged the only goal of the game in Brentford’s previous FA Cup game aswell, edging out Oxford United 1-0.
The striker, who undoubtedly has an exciting future ahead of him, has international experience under his belt too. Having started out in France’s Under-16’s, he now plays for their Under-21s and will be aiming for a senior call-up in the near future.
For now though, Maupay’s focus will be firmly on tomorrow night as he will be looking to add to his prolific goal scoring tally and help his side progress to round five.
Last Season’s FA Cup Form:
Brentford have already exceeded last season’s FA Cup run, having bowed out at the third round stage last time around.
The Bees, who entered the competition in round three, played host to League Two side Notts County and it was the underdog who came away with an unlikely victory. Jon Stead struck the winner on 65 minutes with a wonder goal as the fourth-tiered side progressed to round four.
This Season’s FA Cup Run:
This season’s FA Cup run is proving to be a whole lot nicer for Brentford though as they knocked out League One side Oxford United at the previous hurdle, winning 1-0.
It was star man Maupay who found the net from the spot with 10 minutes to go as the Bees progressed to round four.
Recent Form In All Competitions:
Brentford, who sit 18th in the Championship, have picked up three wins in their last five games in all competitions.
The Bees’ final match of 2018 ended goalless, sharing the points with Birmingham City at St Andrew’s. It was a similar story on New Year’s Day when they had to settle for another draw, this time at home to title chasers Norwich City. However, they’re FA Cup victory over Oxford United four days later meant the Bees returned to winning ways before beating Stoke City 3-1 a week later when returning to league action. Brentford then beat Rotherham United 4-2 at the New York Stadium in their most recent fixture just over a week ago meaning they go into tomorrow’s game unbeaten in 2019.
Last 5 matches in all competitions: DDWWW
First Team Coach Junior Lewis joined Brentford from Hull City in 2005 and made 14 appearances before leaving the club for MK Dons a year later.
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