What positions is Brentford aiming for in the summer transfer window? What did Thomas Frank say? And what do the statistics say?
What positions is Brentford aiming for?
Lyall Thomas from Sky Sports News:
Brentford’s priority is to bring more quality to his squad and try to move up the Premier League table next season.
Their priorities are new full-backs on both sides, a new centre-back and another striker – while of course they are keen on signing Christian Eriksen on a permanent basis.
However, if he goes elsewhere they will also look to sign another attacking midfielder, with Brennan Johnson and Keane Lewis-Potter still high on their list of targets.
On the wings they have a number of options they will be looking at including Aaron Hickey on the left and Djed Spence on the right.
One of their main targets was Shakhtar Donetsk’s Mykhaylo Mudryk but he wants to play in the Champions League and Bayer Leverkusen are ready to give him that opportunity.
What do the stats say about Brentford?
One of the stories of the season was Christian Eriksen’s return to professional football. And there was no turning back once he entered the field. Brentford recorded more wins (seven) in the 10 games he started than in the 28 games he did not start (six), and their goal average doubled.
Eriksen finished third in the Opportunity Creation Division and is heading into the final third since his first start on March 5. Whether he stays or goes, Brentford will need to find another player who can combine defense and offense.
What did manager Thomas Frank say?
Thomas Frank after Brentford’s 2-1 defeat by Leeds on the final day:
“We want to keep everyone, including Christian Eriksen. I don’t know, I think there’s a good chance, but there’s a risk that he’ll sign for another club.”
“He has to go away with his family and decide what to do. I’m an optimistic person so I keep believing, but we don’t know right now.
“Then it’s about adding players to improve the squad. Not many, one or two.”
What should Brentford do this summer?
Sky Sports football journalist Dan Long:
Thanks to their smart, stats-based recruitment model, Brentford stayed loyal to the majority of the squad that helped propel the club into the Premier League for the first time in their history last summer, making just a handful of newcomers, including the club’s record-breaking signing of Kristoffer Ajer by Celtic. They were rewarded for that too, finishing in 13th place, 11 points clear of the relegation zone.
Thomas Frank has already indicated they won’t be making any sweeping changes to the squad this summer, but there are a few areas that are likely to need to be addressed.
Firstly, in the goalkeeping department, a replacement for David Raya should be a goal as the Spain international missed most of the four months with a knee injury and Huesca loanee Alvaro Fernandez failed to tie during his stint as substitute. Jonas Lossl played three games on loan from FC Midtjylland, but both have since returned to their original clubs.
Matthew Cox, signed by AFC Wimbledon last summer, has been promoted to the first-team squad, while former England Under-20 international Ellery Balcombe is hoping to make a claim after being away from the club for five periods on loan.
You should also aim for a right-back. Long-time winger Sergi Canos was used at right-back for most of the season, with his defensive skills being called into question on numerous occasions, and when Frank switched to a 4-3-3, Ajer stepped up to play on the right. back, impressive how he did it.
However, he clearly plays best in central defense and is likely to be Ethan Pinnock’s favored centre-back given captain Pontus Jansson’s likely final season in England.