football

Frank says Brentford are inspiration for clubs worldwide after play-off triumph


Thomas Frank says Brentford can be an inspiration to other clubs after the Bees reached the Premier League for the first time.

Their 2 -0 win over Swansea in the Championship play-off final was more than deserved, as they ended a 74-year wait to return to the top flight.

It represents a huge achievement for a club that must have thought it was cursed when it came to the play-offs.

This was their first success in the end-of-season lottery at the TENTH attempt. It followed defeat in last year’s final to Fulham.

And given the club’s data-based approach to recruitment and some canny business in the transfer market, Frank now believes the Bees’ methods will be a model for others to try and replicate.



Thomas Frank, Manager of Brentford kisses the Sky Bet Championship Play-off Final trophy
Thomas Frank, Manager of Brentford kisses the Sky Bet Championship Play-off Final trophy

“This must be an example to follow for so many clubs around the world,” Frank said, after watching goals from Ivan Toney and Emiliano Marcondes seal victory over the Swans, who had Jay Fulton sent off.

“I’m so pleased, humble and proud to be part of this journey. There’s so many fantastic people involved.

“The way the club has been built and just progresses year after year, after year.

“The journey the club’s been on has been absolutely remarkable. We were so close twice last season, through automatic and then the play-offs.

“We were so devastated at losing then we had a ten-day holiday, even less actually, and got back into it with the Covid restrictions.

“Then there was the second, third, fourth wave. It’s been the most condensed season. We’ve had setbacks and then again we were in the play-offs.

“But I thought the players were calm, relaxed and ready to be ruthless today. They had a great attitude and they deserve this.”

Frank conducted multiple post-match interviews after the success, and understandably it left him in the mood to celebrate.

“I just want to get very drunk tonight!” he said with a beaming smile.

Frank’s opposite number Steve Cooper was understandably dejected following the defeat.

The Swans’ chief said: “Obviously I’m disappointed because we’ve not won the game and that’s what we came here to do.



Steve Cooper refused to criticise his players following defeat at Wembley

“We started the game second best and defining moments didn’t go our way. And we gave ourselves a really tough job going 2-0 down. The players never gave up and if Andre puts away that chance after half-time it might have been different.

“The red card made it even more difficult. I’m not going to criticise the players, because of the season we’ve had.”

Regarding the red card, Cooper used the incident to question the appointment of referee Chris Kavanagh for this game.

Kavanagh oversaw the second leg of the two sides’ play-off semi-final last year – a game Brentford won to reach Wembley.

Replays showed Fulton appearing to slip prior to the challenge.

Cooper added: “There’s no way that Jay would have done that intentionally because he’s just too sensible a player to do it.



Jay Fulton was shown a straight red card

“The red card came out so quick. I thought it needed a bit of football understanding.

“I’m surprised he was doing the game after having done the second semi-final last year.

“We didn’t help ourselves today, but we didn’t get any help from the officials.”





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