Tag Archives: Farid El Alagui

Terry and Farid – could this be the best present yet….?

20 Dec

Back in 2005 the BBC conducted a fans’ survey to find their club’s ‘cult hero’.

If I recall correctly, ‘Football Focus’ would then run a piece each weekend, highlighting several clubs and announcing the respective winners.

A quick trawl of the interweb reveals that the results are still out there and, in the case of Brentford, the winner a very deserving Terry Evans – who secured 47% of the total vote. For the record, Terry Hurlock (28%) and Dean Holdsworth (25%) took second and third place.

I had the pleasure of interviewing Terry back in 2009, where he talked fondly about this honour : “It was probably one of my proudest moments, something like that. Especially compared to some of the people that have pulled on a Brentford shirt. For me to be in that top three was a hell of an achievement. I’ve really got to thank the fans for that, for rating me so highly.”

I also asked Terry whom he would have picked, had he voted? The answer was unequivocally in favour of Mr Hurlock: “Terry! I’d come here as a young professional and he just epitomised it. He was just a leader and I only thought – if I could emulate this fellow. He’d get press for his ruggedness and tough tackling but he could play. Week in, week out, year after year Tel was ripping up trees for Brentford so he’d have been my vote. He was a great player.

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Terry – swapped Bees for Wasps

I’d love the BBC to run this poll again. It’s been almost ten years since the last one and would be a great feature to include as part of the Football League Show. Manish, Leroy, Steve – if you are reading (you aren’t) how about it?

More importantly though, who would get the Brentford vote?

To read the rest of this article, season 2013/14 is now available to download onto Kindle, in full. Containing previously unseen content, you can do so here for less than the cost of one matchday programme.

 Thanks for reading over the course of the campaign. For now I need to make space on this page for any follow up.  The ‘close season’ / World Cup columns continue in full, further on in this site.

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The Farid conundrum. How do you solve a problem like El Alagui?

28 Nov

Who’d be a manager?

Brentford are, undoubtedly, the form team in League One at the moment. A run of seven wins and a draw in our last eight games has seen the team rise to fourth in the table. It is a run that has, most recently, seen Wolves held at Molineux (with, perhaps, the Bees disappointed not to take all three points) along with that great win against Peterborough on Tuesday night. Let’s not forget that these were games that came within three days of each other, against the first and third placed teams in the division.

Uwe is flavour of the month once more after the mid-game silliness against Colchester United (a ludicrous scenario to even be in) and we have a settled team – coinciding with the start of this run. Even Marcello Trotta seems to have won over the vast majority of the, so-called, ‘terrace boo boys’ whilst Clayton Donaldson, despite playing out wide, is our leading scorer and going from strength to strength. I’d love to have seen him tried as the front man but if he can keep on cutting in like he did against Posh then who am I to argue? He certainly missed a few last season (amongst the many he scored) when directly one-on-one with the keeper so perhaps turning in like this IS his best position.

But one question remains.

To read the rest of this article, season 2013/14 is now available to download onto Kindle, in full. Containing previously unseen content, you can do so here for less than the cost of one matchday programme.

 Thanks for reading over the course of the campaign. For now I need to make space on this page for any follow up.  The ‘close season’ / World Cup columns continue in full, further on in this site.

Bring on Wolves – Bees skittle Crewe to make it 6 in a row

17 Nov

Well that was simply stunning.

For the second Saturday in a row, Brentford ran out 5-0 home winners as Crewe were blown away like an empty crisp packet caught in a storm. It really was as dominant a performance as you could hope to see and will have made the rest of League One sit up and take notice – if they weren’t already.

This, of course, made it six successive wins and, with Wolves taking over at the top of the table, it sets things up beautifully for Saturday’s trip to Molineux. The gloves really are off now (or back on, in the case of Clayton Donaldson) and doesn’t it promise to be a Battle Royale?

To read the rest of this article, season 2013/14 is now available to download onto Kindle, in full. Containing previously unseen content, you can do so here for less than the cost of one matchday programme.

 Thanks for reading over the course of the campaign. For now I need to make space on this page for any follow up.  The ‘close season’ / World Cup columns continue in full, further on in this site.

Is this the oddest kit ever? (and the Buzzette prizewinner is named)

8 Nov

The next time you find yourself getting upset by the lack of stripes on the back of the Brentford shirt then spare a thought for supporters of Rio De Janeiro based football team, Madureira.

Up until now, Spanish team La Hoya Lorca were my out and out contenders for the most bizarre kit of the season, with their ‘away ‘effort based on the agricultural heritage of the team’s locality. So much so that the entire ensemble has been designed to look like a stick of broccoli, even having an image of the vegetable imprinted into the top. It was a beautiful reminder of that moment back in the early 1990’s when the marketing men up at Hull City decided to employ similar logic – “Our nickname is ‘The Tigers’, why not make a shirt covered in tiger stripes?”

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Broccoli and Tiger stripes. Odd inspiration, until now….

But move over La Hoya, there’s a new player in town. Brazilian third division team Madureira have just released a special kit commemorating the 50th anniversary of the club’s trip to Cuba. And what better way to do this than by incorporating an image of Che Guevara into the shirt? Who needs big cats or root vegetables when you have a Communist revolutionary? It gets better, though. In the case of the goalkeeper’s kit, they’ve taken things a step further by simply replicating the Cuban flag.  It all makes David Button’s lurid green outfit seem rather tame in comparison and I want one!

So if anybody is heading over to Rio for the World Cup next summer then why not keep your eyes peeled for an unusual souvenir. Brentford have already placed the ‘George Cross’ into the 2005-05 home shirt so who knows if we could go one better next time out…?

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David Button could be sweating on the arrival of the 2014-15 Adidas goalkeeper shirt

Getting back to matters TW8, the results of the most recent ‘Last Word Caption Competition’ have been announced. Special guest judge Natalie Sawyer has revealed her favourite caption for the picture of Sir Alex Ferguson and Farid El Alagui doing…well, I don’t know what.

Natalie told me, “It’s a toughie but I think I’m going for Roger Greenaway’s (sheffbee) effort, which has Farid saying:  OK Sir Alex. Best of three, but I still say you’ve got more chance of starting Saturday than I have.”

Congratulations Roger. I’ll be in touch to arrange delivery of your prize – a Buzzette mug – shortly. All being well there’ll be another competition before Christmas. If you’d like to see the best of the printable suggestions (Simon Catlin, I’m looking at you in particular….) then you can do so here.

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“OK Sir Alex. Best of three, but I still say you’ve got more chance of starting Saturday than I have.”

Otherwise it simply remains to say, bring on Saturday and the F.A. Cup first round.

My feelings on the tie and, of course, the return of Marcus Gayle have already been well documented this week and so I won’t regurgitate here. That said, fingers are crossed for the right result and, with Uwe suggesting that he’ll be naming a strong side, I’m hoping Brentford will find themselves in the velvet bag for the second round draw.

Football’s greatest cup competition – and also the F.A. Cup

27 Oct

Firstly, the FA Cup.

I love the draw for the first round. Its one of those rare moments where I find myself riveted to ITV football coverage. Even though Mark Pougatch (a man who through no fault of his own) has sadly been allowed to oust the great Jim Rosenthal from behind the draw-master’s rostrum, it is still captivating stuff.  The answers to all those questions you had been wondering are revealed.

To read the rest of this article, season 2013/14 is now available to download onto Kindle, in full. Containing previously unseen content, you can do so here for less than the cost of one matchday programme.

 Thanks for reading over the course of the campaign. For now I need to make space on this page for any follow up.  The ‘close season’ / World Cup columns continue in full, further on in this site.

Colchester United – we’re coming for you

18 Oct

Brentford supporters spent a lot of time last season bigging up our, then, forthcoming game against the Champions of Europe with the oft-repeated ‘Coming for you’ refrain.  Fast-forward nine months and its Colchester United, in the league, who I hope will hear the same battle cry at Brentford on Saturday.

A chance comment on the GPG ‘prediction thread’ last night got me thinking more about the weekend’s game. Its fair to say that our form in recent games hasn’t been the same as with which we ruled the roost over the majority of our opponents last season. Whereas then we enjoyed domination on a level that would be illegal outside of certain Far East countries, this time round we have been the whipping boys (so to speak).

To read the rest of this article, season 2013/14 is now available to download onto Kindle, in full. Containing previously unseen content, you can do so here for less than the cost of one matchday programme.

 Thanks for reading over the course of the campaign. For now I need to make space on this page for any follow up.  The ‘close season’ / World Cup columns continue in full, further on in this site.

Ever get the feeling you’ve been cheated?

28 Sep

It was a question famously posed to the crowd by John Lydon of the Sex Pistols following the group’s 1978 concert at San Francisco’s Winterland (their final show until 1996’s ‘Filthy lucre tour’ reunion/cash in). With the previous column focusing on the amount that the transfer tribunal deemed Brentford could end up paying for Will Grigg and a look at his relative merits,

To read the rest of this article, season 2013/14 is now available to download onto Kindle, in full. Containing previously unseen content, you can do so here for less than the cost of one matchday programme.

 Thanks for reading over the course of the campaign. For now I need to make space on this page for any follow up.  The ‘close season’ / World Cup columns continue in full, further on in this site.

Will Grigg – a fair decision ?

25 Sep

So – the transfer tribunal has met and decided that the Bees must pay £325,00 for Will Grigg, up front. And that’s just for starters. With a possible £450,000 to add onto this, based on subsequent appearances and promotions, that makes a total of £ 775,000 (not to mention a sell on clause). As such, should Will help to steer Brentford into the Premiership then it will make him our record signing – eclipsing the £750,000 we paid for Hermann Hreidarsson back in September 1998.

Uwe has told supporters, via the club website, that ‘We are very happy with the outcome’ and believes the tribunal panel was very fair.

But, is it?

To read the rest of this article, season 2013/14 is now available to download onto Kindle, in full. Containing previously unseen content, you can do so here for less than the cost of one matchday programme.

 Thanks for reading over the course of the campaign. For now I need to make space on this page for any follow up.  The ‘close season’ / World Cup columns continue in full, further on in this site.

The A-Z of the season, so far

21 Sep

With no game this Saturday and a rather slow news week for Brentford, I thought I’d catch my breath to look at the season, so far. So here it is,  using the oh so desperate medium of an A to Z list ….

A – Adidas. Our technical sponsor and shirt supplier (in theory). I said my piece on them in the previous column.

B – Beach. The preferred holiday destination of our former number one, if Herr Rösler is to be believed. (Just who is that watching the volleyball in Cardiff? below).

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C – Carlisle. A bizarrely disallowed goal for Toumani Diagouraga was about all we could take home from a game that ended up being an insomniac’s wet dream. 0-0 and, to paraphrase the famous Shankley-ism, both sides were lucky to get nil.

D – Donaldson. Guess who’s back? Clayton’s back. On form, that is. His wining goal against Walsall was followed up with two more against Tranmere.

E – El-Alagui.  Farid is fit again. Farid is scoring again. A last gasp equaliser at Gillingham and a virtuoso performance against AFC Wimbledon in the JPT. C’est magnifique!

F – Fulham. Comedy opportunities were taken down a level with the news this week that they are returning the Michael Jackson statue to Mr Al Fayed. No idea what he will do with this but please, Mr Benham, don’t get any ideas…

G – Goalkeepers. David Button, Jack Bonham, Richard Lee and Liam O’Brien. How many have we named already? And with rumours flying around at one point that Simon may have ben returning on loan, who knows who will be between the sticks by the end of the campaign.  Great to see Richard fit again, and my money is on him!

H – Hammered. It happens. We’ve had it at Derby and Bradford, conceding a total of nine goals without reply. What doesn’t kill you can only make you stronger – just no more repeats, please: -)

I – Internationals. Brentford’s (not, on loan’s) Will Grigg has come off the bench twice for Northern Ireland in recent months. He featured in the shock win against Russia and then again as the team came back down to earth in the Luxembourg game

J – JPT. The Bees have successfully negotiated the first two rounds of a competition that represents an excellent opportunity to finally lay the hoodoo of the ‘W’ place. Next up, Peterborough (a).

K – Keith Stroud. Has carried on where he left off last season, having shown 29 yellows and two reds in the 6 (six) games he has officiated so far this season. A stat so shocking it has necessitated the rarely seen  ‘pre-seven’ bracket.

L – Lionel Road with a small, but vocal minority making noises against the current scheme to build a new stadium, have you sent in your support yet? The club have made it very easy so please do get involved. Every response counts.

M – McAleny. The excitement, the ability, the horrendous bad luck. Conor was looking like another lad straight out of the Goodison Park barrel marked ‘talent’, until that awful injury put paid to his Brentford career after just three appearances. Get well soon.

N – Ninth. Where Brentford currently sit, as it stands. Only eight places off their anticipated final position.

O – O’Connor, Kevin. – With our club captain back to fitness, ‘Mr Brentford’ is getting ever closer to that 500th appearance. Full back; centre back; centre mid. Is there anything he can’t do? Has definitely recovered from the terrible injury and even worse video-bombing (below) he suffered last season.

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(Harlee Dean, allegedly, over the moon about his work on Beesplayer)

P -Penalty. We’ve scored one! Adam Forshaw has written himself into Brentford history by converting from the spot in open play. The goal, against Tranmere, secured the three points for Brentford.

Q – Qatar Airways. Still getting a free advert on the roof of the New road Stand. Come on, marketing crew….

R – Rainbow laces. Here’s hoping the boys will be showing their support to the anti-homophobia campaign on Monday night. Uwe’s backing it, as he told visitors to the club website this week.

S – Sky. Cripes, we are back in front of the Sky cameras on Monday v Leyton Orient. Nobody needs reminding how it went last time that happened.

T – Tranmere – ‘It ain’t over till it’s over’, sang pop music’s Lenny Kravitz on his 1991 hit parade troubling single.  Tell that to Tranmere Rovers. They were dancing in the vomitories of Prenton Park after pulling it back to 3-3 in the 90th minute. Until Adam Forshaw popped up, deep into injury time, to help bag the win.

U – United. Sheffield were trounced 3-1. (and that only tells half the story) on a sunny afternoon at Griffin Park. Adam Forshaw’s first half strike eclipsing Shaleum Logan’s from the previous week as an early contender for goal of the season.

V – Venta – another signing straight out of left field. Javi, a champion’s league veteran, is as comfortable queuing with the fans in the burger queue as he is on the pitch.

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W – Window (transfer)  – flippin’ ‘eck, Uwe! Marcello Trotta. A ballsy move but I hope, a brilliant one. Hasn’t been given a massive opportunity so far due to the red card incident at Bradford but the patches we have seen suggest this could be inspired stuff.

X – eX players. There are a few doing the rounds. Highlights include Charlie McDonald becoming acquainted with the penalty box at Oldham and Gary Alexander’s Van Bastenesque effort for Crawley as they stunned league high fliers Peterborough. However, the real surprise is seeing Lewis Grabban banging them in for fun at Bournemouth in the Championship.

Y – Yeovil Town. Oh dear.  Seeing them being torn apart on the Football League Show every weekend is so frustrating, knowing just how much better than them we would have been. If ever there was an incentive needed to get over the line this season, there it is.

Z – Zones. As it stands Brentford are only one point outside the dreaded play off zone (PLEASE get those four needed to take us into an automatic place).

Natalie Sawyer. Brentford FC. Jane Fonda Bluebird

22 Aug

A strange sounding combination, to be sure, and we’ll get there shortly. First, though – who’d be a manager?

Am I alone in finding the current situation at Brentford all rather surreal?

To read the rest of this article, season 2013/14 is now available to download onto Kindle, in full. Containing previously unseen content, you can do so here for less than the cost of one matchday programme.

 Thanks for reading over the course of the campaign. For now I need to make space on this page for any follow up.  The ‘close season’ / World Cup columns continue in full, further on in this site.