Ealing Road Comedies: Farid El Alagui is key to Bees hopes
4:00pm Friday 10th August 2012 in Rugby League
If Brentford supporters were seeking cause for optimism ahead of this coming season then the signing of Farid El Alagui could well be it, writes Tom Ambrose.
It has been a fruitful pre-season for the man from Morocco, having racked up braces against 1 FC Lokomotive Leipzig and Basingstoke Town.
He arrives on the back of a 27-goal season with Falkirk in the Scottish First Division and Bairns supporters have not held back in their eulogies for the prolific forward.
That has been the vital ingredient missing from the Brentford armada in recent years. Charlie MacDonald gave his all but was never going to be the goalscorer we so desired.
Our new recruit should be considered with an air of caution however, as Clayton Donaldson also arrived at Griffin Park following a prolific season.
He couldn’t tap into the same form he displayed at Crewe but his performances justified selection and goals did come eventually – albeit too late to catapult the Bees into the play-off
Donaldson requires a partner to take some of the strain off him. Somebody to link up with. A fox in the box.
If El Alagui can act as that foil and continue in his own rich vein of form from north of the border, we could have one of the most potent strike forces in the division.
But Brentford are still some players short of challenging this season.
The will he, won’t he soap opera being played out over Jake Bidwell is reminiscent of last summer’s pursuit of Jeffrey Schlupp – perhaps this storyline will have a happier ending.
Turning attentions back to our forward line, Rosler is desperately in need of reinforcements. One injury and we’re snookered.
The general assumption among Brentford’s support is that this is our time.
We have the manager, (the majority of) the players, the club has been bought by a boyhood fan made good and a new ground is at last a reality.
For too long we have watched on as our rivals leapfrog us up the leagues, leaving us on the verge of sinking.
To the untrained eye, League One looks weaker than it has been for a while.
A glance at the sides we share this division with and nobody looks likely to take the league by storm.
*Brentford, with Kevin O'Connor confirmed as club captain for the coming campaign, kick-off their Capital One Cup campaign at Walsall tomorrow before opening the League One season at Bury seven days later.
The Bees beat Wycombe Wanderers 4-1 at Adams Park in their final pre-season friendly on Tuesday with goals from Clayton Donaldson, a Grant Basey own goal, Stuart Dallas and O’Connor.