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Match Previews

PREVIEW: BRENTFORD V TOWN

12 August 2016

Luke Varney is looking to pick up where he left off as Blues travel to Brentford

After signing with Town for the third time, Luke Varney admits to having unfinished business at the Club.

The forward as joined on a short-term deal until January, and believes it shouldn’t take him as long as last season to get to his peak physical condition.

“Last year was disrupted with the injury and I knew I had to come back in the second-half of the season and prove my fitness,” he told the Club website.

“I felt I was starting to get to that match sharpness when the season ended, and I would have liked to have carried on, although I’m sure the lads who played all season were happy for a break!

“I have kept going all through the summer really, and it won’t take me long to get to 100%. I just want to crack on now.

“There is no settling in process, the lads have been very welcoming. They hid all my clothes on day one, that sort of thing.

“I’ve said it before what a good group we’ve got here and that really helps as players that you have that team spirit. You need it in this league because you’re going to have your ups and downs.”

Team News

Town

The Blues will be without David McGoldrick for the next two months after the Republic of Ireland international damaged his ankle ligaments in Tuesday’s cup exit to Stevenage. The returning Luke Varney will be in the squad that travels to Griffin Park, although Brett Pitman [thigh] and Luke Hyam [knee] will also miss out.

Brentford

Bees boss, Dean Smith was hopeful on the injury front prior to Town’s visit to Griffin Park, as he waited on the fitness of a number of his first-team squad. Alan McCormack [heel] will miss out, but Maxime Colin, Andreas Bjelland and Josh McEachran all shook off knocks and should play a part in Saturday’s game.

 


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Where They Stand

Town – 3rd
Brentford – 17th

Last Time They Met

The Bees ran out comfortable winners at Portman Road when the sides last met in April. Sam Saunders had the visitors in the lead midway through the first-half with an emphatic finish before Luke Hyam was sent-off just prior to the break. Two goals in four minutes from Lasse Vibe gave Dean Smith’s side a three goal advantage and weren’t to be caught despite a late Liam Feeney consolation goal. The game was marred, however, by a broken leg suffered by Alan Judge early in the match following a challenge by Hyam, with Brentford’s Player of the Year having to be stretchered off with less than 10 minutes played.


Key Players

Bartosz Bialkowski

Town’s stopper produced a wonderful save in last weekend’s win over Barnsley with the game still tied at 0-0, and it echoed his performances from the end of last season. His ability to pull off extraordinary saves will serve the Blues well as Mick McCarthy’s side look to see off an attacking Brentford side.

Scott Hogan

After an injury-hit couple of seasons, Hogan came back towards the end of last season with a bang, scoring seven times in seven matches, with only two of those appearances coming from the start. The 24-year-old will be looking to continue that form, and catch the eye just as he did whilst at Rochdale in the 2013/14 season, when an impressive campaign helped seal a move to Griffin Park.

Sky Bet Odds

Town: 21/10
Draw: 23/10
Brentford: 13/10

Match Officials

Referee: Stephen Martin
Assistant Referees: David Avent & Mark Jones
Fourth Official: Dan Cook


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