Romaine Sawyers has paid tribute to captain Harlee Dean and believes the Brentford defender plays a massive role off the pitch.

Fans have been wowed by the skipper's fine performances on the pitch, keeping the likes of Tammy Abraham, Chris Wood, Dave Nugent and Darren Bent in his back pocket.

But his persona off the pitch has been commented on by several members of the Brentford squad and Sawyers loves working with the captain.

The midfielder said: “He plays a massive role and has the respect of each individual in the changing room.

Romaine Sawyers

“You know he's not being malicious with anything he says. He understands the game, he knows the game, he's played x amount of games and is Brentford through and through.

“He's got the respect of everyone in the dressing room. He's never going to rip your head off in the wrong way in that he doesn't want you to improve.

“He wants everyone to improve more than himself. Everyone can benefit from having him around.”

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Many fans see Dean as a player of the season candidate and, while Sawyers knows that a large number in the squad can claim it, Dean has had an excellent season.

He added: “There are a lot of candidates. Harlee has picked up his form massively, doing his mazy runs.

“He's picked the right time with the fans voting but he's been consistent through the whole season.

“You guys see him on a Saturday but we see him behind the scenes and he's been consistent throughout.

“When Scott left he stepped up to the plate and rallied the boys together and told us we can kick on again.”

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