Life is never quiet at Brentford. The Birmingham City game, scheduled for Tuesday night at Griffin Park, has been put back a month due to the state of the pitch. And up in Glasgow, the Daily Record has ben laying in to us after publishing an article with Harlee Dean where the centre back has, apparently, been criticising Rangers manager Mark Warburton for his approach to set pieces.
It’s not the first time we’ve managed to upset the publication, through no fault of our own. Regular readers may recall last season’s bizarre attack on us from Barry Ferguson when Lewis Macleod joined from Rangers.
Now they have run an interview with Harlee (why he was talking to them, I have no idea) where he is purported to have said, “Last year we didn’t have one session on set-pieces and it showed on the pitch. That was Warbs’ way. Perhaps that’s where we fell short”.
Harlee took to Twitter to immediately leap to his former manager’s defence.However, even if taken out of context then I really wouldn’t be surprised.These are sentiments, regardless of how true they are, that I’d agree with based on what I saw last season.
“Don’t take it short, it never f**king works” was a regular cry coming over the terrace whenever a corner kick was awarded. It was a cry usually ignored. As for free kicks – the absence of Sam Saunders was the death knell, Alex Pritchard deflections aside, for anything around the 25-yard box.
That said, if Harlee has been taken out of context on this occasion then perhaps he should just give the press a wide berth in future. It was only a few months ago that he gave an interview about the impending play off semi final with Middlesbrough, where he said, “Set-pieces and counter attacks are all they have got”.
We won’t talk about what happened next.
As for the Griffin Park pitch, we have finally succumbed to the inevitable following the 4-0 defeat to Oxford United in the cup.
It will come as no surprise to anybody with eyes in their head but the club have spoken to the League and now got permission to postpone the game against Birmingham City. There had been no improvement from our opening day draw with Ipswich Town as chunks were being cut out of it with all the finesse of a drunken pensioner attempting to use a 9 iron for the first time.
Nobody could believe what they were seeing out there – the footballing equivalent of Victor Tourjansky in his trio of Roger Moore era ‘Bond’ film cameos. However, when even the Head coach and CEO are publically lambasting this then it was obvious something was going to have to give.
Whilst a disappointment for many, this is only a good decision. Aside from the impact it was having on our brand of football, the surface was presenting a serious injury risk to players.
Instead, Birmingham now visit on September 29th in a run that sees us play three successive home games over a ten day period. Let’s hope this beds in a bit better second time around.
And finally, we’ve updated our team profile pictures. Vistors to the official site would have seen the players posing in what seems to be a Garden centre – or perhaps Kew Gardens.
There was no sign of Lewis Macleod although given his aversion to twigs, perhaps best to keep the former Rangers man away from shrubbery.