Last season, Brentford did not finish too far off the play-off spots with only a six point deficit present between themselves in ninth place and Derby County in sixth.
And it is a deficit Brentford will believe they can make up this campaign or in the near future despite the departures of key players such as former captain John Egan and Florian Jozefzoon.
The London club have made a promising start to the Championship, taking 15 points from their first nine fixtures and remain only a point behind Frank Lampard’s Derby side, who currently occupy the last play-off spot.
And while Egan and Jozefzoon have both left Griffin Park and players of their quality will continue to do so in the future, owner Matthew Benham’s recruitment strategy which involves the use of his statistical-analysis company, SmartOdds, will ensure the team remains a competitive one.
With it, Brentford have signed the likes of Andre Gray, Scott Hogan and England defender James Tarkowski before selling them on for healthy profit.
Ultimately, the means to spot and recruit quality players is there for Brentford, despite the club not being the richest team in the Championship, while on the pitch, from a coaching perspective, innovative work is also being done for the club to close the gap.
Following Egan’s move to Sheffield United, Brentford boss Dean Smith has spoken of his decision to not appoint a new captain by scraping the captaincy all together, believing the decision to do so will help produce multiple leaders in the squad.
“I’m not sure the model of having one captain fits within football now,” Smith told the Guardian. “Sometimes when you have a captain you end up with more followers than leaders, and we want to create leaders.
“I like the way they think in rugby and I think that’s something we can learn from as well. We work on set pieces in football and the players are struggling at times to remember 12 different routines but in rugby you can have 120 different lineout calls and they’re expected to remember them.”
The race for promotion could be one of the most competitive in the Championship for years and looking at each and every candidate, by no means can Brentford be considered as one of the favourites to go up.
However, finishing in the final play-off spot can certainly be viewed as a realistic goal for The Bees.Like what the TT have on offer? Sign up for more notifications!
Click here to comment on this articleor
Give us feedback on your Football Transfer Tavern experience