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Brentford boss mulls over formation change after striker signings but insists style stays the same

Bees fans making the trip to Oxford spent time debating what the club's new first choice XI is after a fantastic transfer window to date

Dean Smith will weigh up how best to set up his Brentford squad after the captures of Ollie Watkins and Neal Maupay.

Bees fans making the trip to Oxford spent time debating what the club's new first choice XI is after a fantastic transfer window to date.

Towards the end of last season, Brentford played a 4-3-3 with Jota, Sergi Canos or Florian Jozefzoon supporting centre forward Lasse Vibe.

But with Vibe, Justin Shaibu, Watkins and Maupay to choose from in that position, Smith could yet change the way his side plays with two strikers named in the starting XI for instance.

He said: “It's something we'll look at in training. Our style of play won't change that's for sure as it's engrained in the football club and how we want to be.

Neal Maupay has joined Brentford from Saint-Etienne(Image: Brentford FC)

“Our pressing and high pressure was very good. We won the ball back a lot in the opposition half in the first half.

“We can get better at counter-pressing at times and certainly better at defending when we lose the ball but we're working at it.”

Maupay joined the club on July 14 and Smith believes his best role is as a centre forward.

The head coach added: “He's one we've been pursuing for a while. A lot of credit has to go to the directors of football and the recruitment team.

“He's one we'd looked at and targeted but other clubs came in for him just before and late on. He's looked bright in training. He's a centre forward. He's a number nine and a goalscorer.”

Through the door: Ollie Watkins is a Bee(Image: Brentford FC)

Watkins, who had been targeted by the Bees 12 months ago, can also play up front but in other areas around a main striker.

Smith confirmed: “He can play as a nine, in a wide area as well, behind the frontman as an advanced midfielder.

“He's got a number of positions he can fill. We liked his potential. We're not sure how far he can go. He's a bright young player and hopefully we can get the best out of him.”

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