Frank wants more protection for Maupay

Brentford boss Thomas Frank called for more protection for striker Neal Maupay following the goalless draw with Birmingham at St Andrew’s.

Frank was forced to take the Frenchman off in the second half after he had collected a yellow card.

The Bees boss said: “I would say in general I think the match official needed to protect the key players in the game.

“You should see Neal’s back. There are scratches all the way down on his back.

“I know that is part of the game. You have to handle that. Defenders know all the tricks in the book. He is clever as well. I understand what happens but if you are smashed and hit every single game for 90 minutes there comes a time when all of us would be annoyed over those situations.

“With the booking, when they were all over him, I thought it was best to take him off.

“Playing four games in a short space of time I thought it was it would be good for him to be fresh against Norwich and score goals.”

Commenting upon the Maupay situation, Birmingham manager Garry Monk said: “Diving is in his make-up. There is no denying that. It is not really my concern if I am honest. He does it in every game and he had one of our players sent off for exactly that reason last season.

“Everyone in football knows he does it but he doesn’t get punished. But it was obvious by the way they took him off the pitch that he was going to get into trouble.”

Frank was generally pleased with the outcome against a high-flying Birmingham side.

He said: “We did well in the first half and controlled the game. We needed to be more positive with the half-chances we created.

“In the second half I wasn’t satisfied with my players not being brave enough on the ball. To be fair Birmingham pressed us and made it difficult by smashing the ball forward.

“We handled it well. Defensively we were very solid and gave away zero chances.

“They created nothing and that is well done to the boys who have conceded far too many away goals in the past.”