Promoted teams in profile: Brentford


Our look at the three clubs promoted to the Premier League begins with last season’s Championship play-off winners, Brentford.

For the first time since 1947, Brentford will return to the top-flight of English football after claiming a 2-0 victory over Swansea City in the Championship play-off final.

The west London side went from strength to strength in the regular season, finishing just four points adrift of second place Watford.

It wasn’t plain sailing for the Bees, though, as they went into their play-off semi-final second leg trailing 1-0 on aggregate to Bournemouth.

Brentford emerged 3-1 victors at their impressive new stadium, booking their place in the Championship play-off final to face Swansea at Wembley.

Wembley has become a familiar site for Brentford, having missed out on promoition at the hands of Fulham a year earlier.

This time, their fortunes were different as they secured their place in the top flight for the first time in the Premier League era.

Ivan Toney and Emiliano Marcondes netted two first-half goals to secure promotion for a side that had been defeated in nine previous play-off campaigns.

When Brentford host Arsenal on August 14 they will become the 50th club to compete in the competition since its inception in 1992-93.

The boss

Appointed as an assistant head coach alongside Richard O’Kelly in December 2016, Thomas Frank has made a remarkable difference at Brentford.

After the departure of Dean Smith in October 2018, Frank was named head coach in a particularly turbulent time for the west London side.

Things didn’t get off to the best start for the Dane, winning just one game in his opening ten but the turn of the year saw a turn in fortune.

Claiming seven points from nine in January 2019, Frank was nominated for Championship manager of the month with his side later claiming an 11th place finish.

The 2019/20 season was a largely positive one and an unbeaten run in June following the season restart won Frank Championship manager of the month.

Despite finishing third in the league, it was a tale too often told for Brentford as they lost 2-1 to Fulham in the 2020 Championship play-off final.

In the midst of a 21-match unbeaten run, Frank’s side secured five wins in December 2020 as he earned himself another Championship manager of the month award.

For a second successive season Brentford finished the league in third but this time they went all the way, making Frank only the second manager to win promotion to the top tier of English football with Brentford.


- Ryan Dickson was a part of Brentford’s League Two title winning side for the 2008-09 season, he left the club in 2010 to join Saints, who were subsequently promoted to the Championship at the end of the 2010-11 season.
- Harlee Dean signed for Southampton on a two-year contract in August 2010 and joined Brentford on loan in November 2011, signing a permanent deal with the club in May 2012.
- Brentford head coach Thomas Frank spent five years managing multiple Danish national youth teams, crossing the same time span as Jannik Vestergaard’s spell in the Danish youth sides.

Head-to-head record

Played 41
Saints 16
Draws 12
Brentford 13

Last three meetings

16 September 2020 Southampton 0-2 Brentford (Carabao Cup)
30 April 2011 Brentford 0-3 Southampton (League One)
11 December 2010 Southampton 0-2 Brentford (League One)