BUZZING BEES ARE LOOKING UP NOW
THE COUNTDOWN is already on for Brentford boss Mark Warburton as the Bees prepare for life in the Championship.
They can do so having finished the season on a high in a game which saw the 500th club appearance for captain Kevin O’Connor.
O’Connor entered the fray as a substitute in the 26th minute to rapturous applause by both sets of fans, who created a party atmosphere at Griffin Park all afternoon.
Goals from Stuart Dallas and Alan Judge ensured that the Bees fans roared their way through to the post-game celebrations, and Warburton hopes they will replicate their raucous support throughout next season.
“We all know that 98 days from (Saturday) we could be playing our first Championship game, so we’re counting down the days,” he said.
“We’ll look forward to the fixture list being announced, there’s some great London derbies to look forward to so I’m delighted for the fans.
“The fans were incredible and I hope they will bring this atmosphere to every single home game next year.
“We’ve got a strong squad of players, the work has started now and the scouting staff are already very busy.
“We’ll only bring in players who will add value, the harmony and unity of the dressing room is good and we want to improve that further.
“We’ve got a tough pre-season, we’re going away overseas so the players will have to work hard.”
On a day of cheering, the loudest were saved for the milestone appearance of O’Connor, who replaced an injured Tony Craig just before the half-hour mark.
The poor quality of football on show in the first half soon subdued the Brentford fans, but they were brought back to life as O’Connor’s header from Dallas’ corner was palmed away by Chris Day.
The party threatened to turn sour on the hour mark when Jonathan Douglas and John Mousinho tangled in the box. Brentford’s Douglas retaliated on his opposite number, earning him a yellow card.
But Dallas broke the deadlock to give Brentford the lead, finding the bottom corner from the edge of the six-yard box from Nico Yennaris’ pass across goal.
Judge finished the job in the dying minutes, darting in from the left to beat day again in his left corner to leave Graham Westley’s side at the foot of the table.
“I’ve not enjoyed working with this group of players because they’ve not given their heart and soul to the club, ”Westley said.
“I’ve made no secret of that. Everybody here knows that I will get it right and that I will get a football team on the pitch that people will be proud of.
“Stevenage is a small club that has to work on tight budgets and we need people who understand that.
“The sheet of paper is pretty clean, there’s one or two who are contracted but in the main I’ll wipe the slate clean.”
STAR MAN STUAR
T DALLAS Brentfo
rd HIGH FIVES: Brentford’s Alan Judge celebrates his goal with Stuart Dallas