Totally Buzzed is previewing every single Premier League team ahead of the 2021/2022 campaign and now it is the turn of Brentford.

How last season went:

Brentford being in the Premier League this season shows that they finally managed to achieve their long-term goal, with them finally winning promotion from the Championship. However, in true Brentford fashion, they didn’t do it the easy way. The Bees once again missed out on achieving automatic promotion, finishing 3rd in the Championship, and had to once again battle their way through the play-offs. While they were outclassed by Fulham in the 2020 play-off final, The Bees kept their composure and swept aside Swansea City in the 2021 play-off final, winning 2-0. As for other competitions,  Brentford exited the FA Cup at the fourth round, suffering a narrow 2-1 loss at the hands of Leicester City, and had a memorable run in the EFL Cup. Thomas Frank’s side reached the semi-final of the EFL Cup and eliminated the likes of West Bromwich Albion, Fulham, and Newcastle United during their run.

Brentford’s Championship Stats – 2020/21:

*According to*

Brentford Player Stats – 2020/21:

Top Scorer Across All Competitions: Ivan Toney – 33 goals in 53 appearances (0.68 goals per 90minutes, 132 minutes per goal)

Top Scorer – Championship: Toney – 31 goals in 45 outings (125 minutes per goal)

Most Assists Across All Competitions: Bryan Mbeumo – 11 assists in 49 matches (1.04 chances per 90 minutes)

Most Assists – Championship Only: Toney (10 assists in 45 appearances)

Most Minutes Played Across  Championship Fixtures – Top 3:

  1. Toney (4132 minutes) 2.David Raya (4050 minutes) 3. Ethan Pinnock (3704 minutes)

1st five league fixtures:

Brentford (H):  Arsenal last faced Brentford in 2018 in the League Cup, and secured a comfortable 3-1 win in that match. The Gunners’ last league meeting with The Bees was way back in 1947 where the two sides met in the old first division. The Gunners achieved a 1-0 victory on that occasion.

Crystal Palace (A): The Bees last faced Palace in a competitive match in 1977 as the pair met in the first round of the League Cup that year. The Bees beat Palace 2-1 in the first leg of that clash, before The Eagles swept the Bees aside in the second leg, defeating them 5-1.

Aston Villa (A): Villa last clashed with Brentford in the 2018/19 season when in the Championship, and didn’t manage to achieve a victory over the Bees during that campaign. Villa and Brentford recorded a 2-2 draw when facing each other at Villa Park, and the Bees achieved a 1-0 victory over Smith’s team when hosting them at Griffin Park.

Brighton (H): Brighton last locked horns with The Bees in the Championship during the 2016/17 season. The Seagulls drew 3-3 with the London club at Griffin Park and lost to The Bees 2-0 when hosting them at Falmer Stadium.

Wolves (A): Wolves brushed The Bees aside the last time the two sides met, as they achieved a 3-0 win when hosting them at the Molineux in January 2018. However, it wasn’t a clean sweep for Wolves against Brentford during that Championship campaign, as the London club earned a 0-0 draw when hosting them at Griffin Park.

Brentford Fan Perspective: Terry (@TentacleTouchy – Twitter)

Best Player: Without a doubt, David Raya.

Casual spectators of our last season in the Championship will naturally prioritise and focus on Ivan Toney’s impressive record-breaking goal-tally. Understandably so! 31 goals within 45 appearances is an outstanding achievement, especially within your first year at a new club. However, Brentford’s attacking line-up is constantly evolving and adjusting with every other transfer window.

In my mind, having been able to maintain our core defensive lineup these last few seasons is what has maintained our competitive edge and drive towards our newfound spot in the Premier League. Raya played a fundamental role in maintaining our 21 match unbeaten run to obtain our play-off place and it’s thanks to players like him, that define the current foundation of Brentford going forward.
Promising Youngster: Unlike most Premier League sides, Brentford does not operate with a conventional academy. Instead, we maintain a secondary team in a similar fashion to those you see in the LaLiga pyramid. Brentford B has seen a few names step up and establish themselves into the first team, with Marcus Forss being the most recent example. With that in mind, Jaakko Oksanen and Mads Bidstrup. Whilst they won’t likely be playing full games, I do foresee them being vital rotation players and substitutes as we adjust to the Premier League lifestyle.

The player who is likely to surprise people (underrated/less known): Funny enough I just mentioned him; Marcus Forss!

When it comes to media attention surrounding the Brentford side, I felt that Forss and his contributions were overshadowed by our other attacking options and controversial figures. Even when it was his goal against Swansea that sealed our place into the play-off finals; all eyes were on Toney, Mbeumo, and Jansson. I foresee this being a big season for the Finnish international, not only to step-up and receive the attention he deserves; but maintain and cement his position within the starting eleven.

Thoughts on the manager: Beyond the Swansea copypasta that circulates on r/soccer? Thomas Frank certainly has a reputation, not just from our competition but here within the Brentford fanbase too. Some have deemed him a budget Mourinho when it comes to interviews, others would like to formally request he not chew gum for the entire game. Self admittedly I did not have too much faith in him when he first took over from Dean Smith back in 2018. We played a miserable winter window with inconsistent performances and ever-changing tactical formations, somehow stumbling into an 11th placed finish under his first season of supervision.

Thankfully I and many doubters have been proven wrong since! Our board gave him more time to readjust the team to his playstyle, phased in various players from the Brentford B side and we’ve seen improved overall points margins in our time in the Championship.

Worried About/Weakness of squad: My fear is being “figured out” as cliche as that expression is. What works in the Championship, doesn’t necessarily work in the Premiership. Fact that Brentford has been joined in promotion with notable “yo-yo clubs” Norwich and Watford is a testament to that.

However, for my side, it’s a little different. See, it’s Brentford’s first time in the Premier League. So whenever I read comments from neutrals online in relation to Brentford and the team’s performances, I feel a sense of dejavu. That history itself is going to repeat, that we’ll go the same route as Ian Holloway’s Blackpool side and their stint within the Premiership back in 2010–11. Blackpool was constantly praised by pundits for their drive and determination, defying all expectations early into the season… only to be relegated on the last day.
But I can’t be completely negative! We did beat multiple Premier League sides last season in our impressive EFL Cup run. In fact, Fulham only beat one more side than us in their entire season in the Premier League. So hey, we can’t be too bad despite my pessimism!
Dream Transfer: James Ward-Prowse. Bet you didn’t expect that as an answer, huh? I am honestly baffled as to how was not even included in the Euros, considering how he is developing nicely into a dead-ball and set-piece specialist for the Saints. Ward-Prowse would be an ideal fit for Brentford’s high-pressing counter-attack offence and would certainly refine our central midfield play, having relied heavily on the wings the past few seasons. Southampton are very lucky to have him!

Realistic Transfer: With Brexit restrictions impacting how we scout players, I do foresee us purchasing more directly from within the United Kingdom or those that already have British citizenship/workers right status. Considering the sort of data Brentford typically utilize for transfers, Steven Caulker’s career resurgence in Turkey for Alanyaspor should be taken of note. Not only does he fit the citizenship status, but Caulker has prior Premier League experience that would be a vital benefit for a side like Brentford, who currently have two of it’s starting defenders out with injuries. Caulker also played a pivotal role in Alanyaspor’s defence, leading to a Europea qualification spot in his first season for this Turkish side.


That said, Brentford have also established themselves a nice reputation for building up players; so I do foresee us maybe enticing the odd youth player from rival sides. Welsh international and Liverpool player, Harry Wilson being one good example. Kevin Nisbet has also been previously rumoured as a potential transfer. I was rather impressed with his drive and determination within the Euros, despite only featuring as a substitute in all three appearances. I think building upon our attacking options is the only sensible route of action currently, due to the next question.

Player you fear leaving: Ivan Toney, Rico Henry and David Raya.

With Ivan Toney it’s rather obvious. You don’t just score 31 goals in 45 appearances and not get the attention of the other Premier League clubs! Much like Ollie Watkins the season prior, had we not been successful in our promotion efforts, he’d have been out the door within the first month of the window opening to be blunt. With Toney I think it will be a matter of form. If he’s firing on all cylinders come this winter window, I foresee him being one of the main targets. Otherwise, Brentford might be able to hold onto him just a little longer.
Had Rico Henry not suffered an injury towards the tail end of the 20-21 season, I do think he’d have been one of the names outright sold this summer window regardless of promotion status. Especially as Henry fits the homegrown player criteria that some clubs are desperate to maintain. I won’t be at all surprised if Aston Villa submit an offer this winter window, considering Dean Smith’s prior history with Henry goes as far back as their time together at Walsall.
David Raya has been previously approached by Arsenal, which foresaw him not starting our opening four matches of the 20-21 season. However with his starting position assured and the Spanish keeper being rewarded with Premiership football for his loyalty, I don’t see him leaving for another team within the Premier League. That said, I wouldn’t be surprised if he is targeted internationally. Give it a season or two before he’s playing in LaLiga or Serie A.
League Expectation: Ideally, I’d like to see us strive for a mid-table finish, establish our presence in the Premier League and cement our place over the coming years. I don’t want us to repeat what happened to Blackpool, in which we are everyone’s “second favourite” or be dubbed the hipsters club of choice anymore. It’s about time people actually paid attention to us and not via glorified highlights shared on social media or via another “moneyball” article piece.
League Prediction: I think we’ll comfortably finish mid-table. Maybe the highest we’ll reach is 12th. I am only this confident due to the surrounding nature of the teams we are against. Brighton’s finishing ability has been dreadful, Crystal Palace have heaps of players potentially out of contract, Leeds loath playing us, Newcastle fans have to suffer yet another season of Bruceball and Watford are bound to self-destruct by January due to the owners’ known tomfoolery.
Biggest Rival This Season/Love It If We Beat them: Arsenal. Purely because my next-door neighbour is a fan and I can take delight in annoying him about it. Yes, I am that petty.
Any Other Comments about Brentford: I do hope that come the end of the season, no matter if we finish first or last; that Brentford will finally be given the respect they deserve for getting into the Premier League with its wage structure, transfer policy and overall team management.