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  1. And so on to our latest meeting with a Premier League debutant. Brentford had been knocking on the door for promotion for a couple of years, with a mobile and prolific front three that was probably the most highly effective unit outside the top flight. It even had its own name - BMW. Benrahma, Mbuemo and Watkins. Mbuemo is still there but Brentford sold the other two at the beginning of last season for about £50m combined. They added the very effective Ivan Toney and finally earned their place in the top tier. They've even spent money on a brand new stadium, moving away from their very lower-league-old-school Griffin Park - a stadium best known for having a pub at every corner of the ground, and for being right below the Heathrow flightpath. The new place is just a short distance away. Balls. Energy. Experience. Skill. Know-how. Nerve. Effervescence. Endeavour. Shooting boots. I don't ask for much. Brentford are far from regular opponents for Liverpool down the years. We last met them in a couple of cup ties in the 80s but for league action, you have to go way way back to before the Second World War to find our last league win at Griffin Park. It was March 1938, and the reds beat their London opponents 3-1 thanks to goals from pre-war goal machine Jack Balmer, Alf Hanson and debutant Jimmy McInnes. Somebody named Hopkins replied for The Bees. I can't find Youtube footage (I was hoping for an old Pathe news reel narrated by Mr. Cholmondley-Warner, but no such luck). Not even a photo from a newspaper cutting. It was a top flight game though, and not because it was near the old London Airport. The top film that mid-March 1938 week was the musical western The Girl of the Golden West, directed by Robert Z. Leonard (best known for the Oscar Best Picture-winning The Great Ziegfeld two years earlier) and starring Jeanette MacDonald (who?) and Nelson Eddy (again, who?). The plot is described as "A frontier woman falls in love with an outlaw." What else can I say? Stringy is the probably only one who paid tuppence to watch it at his local fleapit. Interestingly, the last match thread featured a film about the final frontier, and this one features a film about what many people see as the first frontier. Anyway, there is a trailer of sorts on Youtube. Another early-evening Saturday fixture, against a team that have generally looked bang up for it this season. Sort of like Sheffield United two years ago. They even have the same kit. We basically know what Thomas Frank's side are going to try and do. Be physical and hope the ref is favourable. They will look to give it a go in front of their fans, just like they did in their first game against Arsenal. The thing is, we are not Arsenal (thank fuck for that, fam!). We just need to ignore all that and do what we know our players can do. Get it, get the goals and get out with the 3 points. As ever, be that single-minded about it. Oh, and more precise with our finishing of course.
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