It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Unfortunately we also have a football match to talk about. The LYBP team don their festive hats, raise a large glass of fizz and guess some stuff about the Bees and the Birds. Happy Christmas y’all.
Is very far
We’re falling down
Playoffs further day by day
(Premier League) I miss you
*2,063 miles on the road to be exact, discounting cup games.
So this is Christmas, and what have we done? Got a new German gaffer, and a keeper called Gunn. On the menu this year is a two-Bir roast – Birmingham and Burton away that is – but first up it’s Brentford at the not so Fortress-y Carrow Road.
Dean Smith’s side have had an up and down season, much like Norwich. It took Brentford until mid-September to register their first league victory, but a strong October and November has kept them safely afloat in midtable. Draw Is Over (If You Want It), John Lennon sings, but Brentford have taken no notice and registered 10 stalemates this season, more than any other side. The squandering of a 2-0 lead at Loftus Road in stoppage time is perhaps the most damning demonstration of their fragility. Perhaps, we’ll suffer the fate of Last Christmas where we drew 0-0 to our visitors on New Year’s Day? Then again, where Norwich go, goalless draws rarely follow: we’ll surely give that nil-nil to someone special.
Ollie Watkins, who I’m sure has had an X Factor Christmas number one at some point, is Brentford’s top scorer with seven. Romaine Sawyers and Nico Yennaris have formed the basis of their midfield, and summer signing Florian Joezefzoon, formerly of Ajax and PSV, has added some firepower off the bench. It’s worth noting that only three of the team that were defeated in the EFL cup by City started in last week’s riveting 0-0 with Barnsley. Brentford do, however, Step Into Christmas with their noses in front, having done the unthinkable and beaten Fulham.
Indeed, it really is the most wonderful time of the year: Oliviera has gone shite again, Murphy has no confidence, and the wholesale of Naismith, Jerome and others is surely forthcoming. Ah yes, there it is, right there: the festive spirit. Still, there are far worse things to face at Christmas than Brentford: your uncle blurting racist things at the dinner table, or having to pretend you appreciate a really awful gift, y’know, one like Marcel Franke. (Oh, you’re telling me we’ve got rid of him?!)
Brentford at home on cold, winter’s night is not the worst thing to find in your stocking. Will City be up to the fight?
Brentford owe their existence to the winter months. They formed in 1889 from the Brentford Rowing Club, who needed something with which to busy themselves over the festive season. A vote held at the Oxford and Cambridge Hotel public house declared 5 to 4 that it would be football which they play, not rugby. SW.
SW: Leeds last week proved we are not all bad. We are just a bit bad. Sure, we won’t get playoffs if we carry on as we are, but we will win a few games here and there. This is one of them.
Seb Foresees: A valuable 2-0 victory.
RJ: The Bees hover above us in the mid-table water treading zone, a point and 10 goal differences to the good. Whilst I doubt we’ll overtake them on the old GD after Friday night, I reckon we’ll clock up a nice Christmassy comfortable home win and go above them on points. I have no evidence on which to base that thinking, but I have been good and I want my present.
Rich reckons: Agriculturists 3 – Apiculturists 1
CT: Last season we beat Brentford 5-0 and the Big Screen had a busy day. This season the Big Screen has barely turned five times in total and I fear for its fitness. With our two golden boys back together in the middle again I’m hoping it gets in a work out before all those Christmas calories take hold. But as Brentford are also masters of possession based football with little end product it'll probably be a bore fest with 22 players passing sideways.
Clare Calculates: A big, fat, festive 1-1. And Pritchard and Canos to score, because football is fun like that.
ZW: ‘Tis the season to be jolly and all that, so I would like to hope City aren’t in the business of playing Scrooge. They were alright against Leeds, nothing to be ashamed of, to they need to build on that and the Sheffield Wednesday performance to create something special against Brentford. I feel confident, or at least as confident as I can be given our complete lack of consistency.
Zoë Assumes: Norwich 3-1 Brentford. Ho Ho Ho.