Frank desperate to make Bees fans proud against Newcastle

Boss Thomas Frank has promised that Brentford will play their best possible side in Tuesday’s Carabao Cup quarter-final against Premier League Newcastle, and said he wants to “make the fans proud”.

The Bees have already made club history by reaching the last eight for the first time – but Frank said they will be going all out to break even more records by getting to the semi-finals.

Asked how he felt about being the man to potentially create Brentford history, Frank said: “Of course it will be big, of course it means a lot, but it’s not about me personally.

“It’s more about what can we do for the club, how can we make the fans proud, and we are trying our best to do that.”

Frank has played a mixture of regular starters and regular substitutes in his line-up in each of the first four rounds. And he said there is no chance of him deliberately playing a weakened team or resting players for the Bees’ three Championship games over the festive period.

“We have played 20 league games and Newcastle have played 13, so I think that tells a little bit about the workload we’ve been under compared to them,” said Frank, whose side face Cardiff City on Boxing Day.

“I need to speak to the medical guys because we need to assess the boys.

“But I can promise we will put out the strongest possible side to try to win that game.

“We will not play youngsters for fun, we will play a strong team.

“At this moment in time, the boys are fit, they are strong, you can see the intensity we played with for the first 30 minutes against Reading. You can see the hard work they put in. So if there are no injury problems, we will play a strong side.”

Newcastle are 12th in the Premier League and have recently had to cope with a Covid outbreak among their squad.

But although Brentford have beaten three Premier League sides to reach this stage, Frank admits his side are the underdogs.

He added: “We always want to win but of course Newcastle are massive favourites so we can go out and play free, and play forward and attack.

“I don’t imagine anything other than that they will play their strongest side against us. They need to go for a title. I don’t know how long it is since they won a trophy, so if they get one it will be massive for them.”

The Bees’ record in the League Cup is poor – they had previously reached the fourth round twice in 1982/83 and 2010/11, but have gone out in the first round in five of the past nine seasons.

To reach this stage for the first time, they have beaten Wycombe 4-2 on penalties after a 1-1 draw, Southampton 2-0 away, West Brom 5-4 on penalties after a 2-2 draw, and Fulham 3-0.