Inside Griffin Park

Thursday 20 November 2014 10:00

Ahead of Friday night’s West London derby, Brentford fan Paul Fletcher gives us some insight into his side.

I’m sure you would’ve taken a Play-Off spot at this stage of the season if it had been offered to you before a ball had been kicked?

Absolutely! To be perfectly honest, after only managing one season last time we were in the second tier, anything above the bottom three would have done for me!

Have you been impressed with the Bees so far? Do they deserve to be there?

I think they’ve been superb! Even at Bournemouth, where we lost 1-0, we outplayed them in the second half, same again against Norwich. So even in defeat we were playing some good stuff. The way in which the team plays on the deck, moving the ball around quickly whilst taking care of it bodes well. They definitely deserve to be where they are.

What’s your opinion of manager Mark Warburton?

I think he’s been a revelation. To be honest I was a little apprehensive when he was appointed, however the footballing ethos he’s instilled in the players and the way he projects himself have more than justified his appointment.

What’s a realistic target for Brentford come the end of the season?

A lot will depend on how injuries and suspensions affect the squad. If we can keep relatively clear of both, and possibly add another striker in the January transfer window, then we have a good chance of remaining in the top half of the table. And who knows, maybe a push for a Play-Off place.

Who have been your stand-out performers so far?

There have been a number, but l would single out Jonathon Douglas, Alan Judge and Tony Craig. I would also add, from the last few games, Toumani Diagouraga who seems to have reinvented himself as Patrick Vieira!

It’s a long time since Fulham and Brentford met in the league – are you anticipating a tasty game?

There haven’t been any in recent years so it should be an absolute cracker! Whilst, for me, QPR will always be the real enemy, beating Fulham comes a close second. A repeat of 1992/93 please!! [Brentford beat Fulham 2-0 home and away in the League Cup].

Can you recall any memorable moments from our previous West London derbies?

I will never forget that day at Griffin Park during our [1991/92] title-winning season when we took them apart in the first 45 minutes! Unforgettable! I can also recall a game at Craven Cottage where Gary Blissett ‘sorted out’ Fulham’s goalkeeper [Jim Stannard] at the Hammersmith End.   

Are you pleased to have the fixture back in the calendar?

Without doubt! It’s right up there as the must-see game of the season! Old rivalries revisited, with the Bees hopefully ending up with the bragging rights!

Which Fulham players are you not looking forward to facing?

Ross McCormack and Dan Burn, because he will give me flashbacks to the Play-Off defeat by Yeovil at Wembley!  

Where can away fans go for a pint before the game?

Apart from the Royal Oak, I think the other three of the four pubs on the corners of the ground are away friendly. Otherwise, the Nelson and the Globe have usually got a good atmosphere pre and post-match.   

What songs can we expect to hear from the home fans?

‘Hey Jude’, ‘we are Brentford FC, we’ll sing on our own’, plus ‘who are ya?!’

What score prediction are you going for?

2-1 to Brentford, because I think we are a better side and the fans will be like an extra man on the night.

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