Brentford boss Thomas Frank believes a top-half Premier League finish “should not be possible” for the club and says it is a “minor miracle” to have secured another season of top-flight football.
Chelsea’s 3-0 win over Leeds on Wednesday means the Bees are now mathematically safe.
They take on an Everton side at Goodison Park on Sunday who are still desperate for points to secure their own safety, and Frank addressed the training ground staff to praise them for the club’s achievements this season ahead of the game.
“I had a meeting this morning with everyone here; groundsmen, training-ground personnel, staff – I think around 70 people – just to praise everyone for doing a very good job,” he said.
“I think it’s a minor miracle that we are where we are and a top-10 finish would be incredible. It should not be possible.
“The thing I’m most proud of is that we are not crawling over the line and just hanging in there.
“I think in every aspect you measure, whether it’s with my eyes and, yes, I’m biased, but still, if you ask any other football person to analyse our performance over the course of the season they will say it’s absolutely fair and square that Brentford next year are in the Premier League.
“And all the numbers, xG, different tables, stats, and so on, we probably deserve even more than we have got this season.
“What I am most proud of is that it’s fully deserved, so why shouldn’t we be able to produce that again?”
Brentford will remain without defender Ethan Pinnock for the game due to a hamstring problem, while Saman Ghoddos and Frank Onyeka will also miss out with ankle injuries.
But Sergi Canos will be available having missed the past four games with a hamstring injury.
“He (Pinnock) will not be ready for Everton, maybe Leeds,” Frank added.
“Saman is also out. Frank is positive, he trained with the team today but it’s just a bit too early to be involved in the squad.
“He’s ahead of Saman and Ethan right now and he trained with the team today and Wednesday so there’s a chance (of playing before the end of the season).
“I expect Everton to come flying at us and they will play with that extra edge and determination that you can only find when you are in a position like that where you are 100% sure you will have it.”