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Championship preview: Brentford vs. Millwall

JAKE Cooper and Ryan Tunnicliffe are favourites to replace Byron Webster and Shaun Williams in the Millwall side that takes on Brentford on Saturday.

Cooper hasn’t started a league game since the opening day. Shaun Hutchinson will shift to the right side of central defence.

Tunnicliffe will slot into midfield alongside George Saville.

Lions boss Neil Harris shouldn’t have any more injury worries and could be boosted by Tom Elliott’s return to the match-day squad after he recovered from a quad injury.

“Tom is back with the group. It’s been a tough period for the attacking players, with Tom’s injury and Lee Gregory’s suspension,” Harris said.

“The players have been brilliant but we have probably been over-worked in that area. Tom is still not firing 100 per cent. But hopefully towards the end of the week he is and comes into consideration for the squad on Saturday.”

Brentford have won just one of their 11 league games this season, a 3-0 victory against bottom side Bolton.

Dean Smith’s side are unbeaten in three games, however, and showed signs in the 2-2 draw at Middlesbrough in their last game that they are currently in a false position in the league after finishing 10th last season.

“They’re probably in a position that has surprised everybody,” Harris said. “The lower reaches isn’t a position they will occupy for long.

“From the games I’ve seen this year, and I’ve watched various games this week, they’re an extremely talented side. They’ve built a Championship squad over the course of the last three or four years.

“They probably haven’t got the results or points that they deserved, a bit similar to ourselves.

“I do expect them in time to start climbing the table. They are a very good footballing side. Total football.

“Yes, we expect them to dominate possession. They do in every game they play. We don’t expect anything different this weekend.

“We have to make sure we defend for the whole game, unlike against Barnsley when we switched off a couple of times. That was very unlike us so we have to make sure we’re back to our best in that sense.

“And when we do have the ball we have to make sure we use it wisely and that we impose ourselves on Brentford.

“When the opportunities come along, and they will come along, we have to make sure we are clinical and take them.”

Brentford received a triple injury boost this week after Lasse Vibe, skipper John Egan and Lewis Macleod all featured in a B game against Exeter.

Rico Henry was stretchered off against Middlesbrough and is a doubt.

Millwall have lost just two of their last 18 games against Brentford. The Lions are looking for their first away win of the season, with the Bees chasing a first home victory in the league in 2017-18.

Millwall record against Brentford

Played 63

Won 20 Draw 21 Lost 22

League form guide

Brentford: DLWDD

Millwall: DWDWL

Probable Millwall team

4-4-2: Archer; McLaughlin, Hutchinson, Cooper, Meredith; Wallace, Tunnicliffe, Saville, O’Brien; Gregory, Morison.

Match odds

Brentford 1/1 Draw 13/5 Millwall 13/5

Image: Millwall FC 

John Kelly

(@jkelly1882)