PNE opponents in good form

Scott Hogan (right) with Aston Villa's Pierluigi Gollini in Wednesday night's 1-1 at Villa Park

Scott Hogan (right) with Aston Villa's Pierluigi Gollini in Wednesday night's 1-1 at Villa Park

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Brentford return to Griffin Park to face Preston North End this weekend, fresh from two good results on the road.

After winning 2-0 at Brighton last Saturday, the Bees drew 1-1 with Aston Villa on Wednesday night.

It needed an 88th-minute equaliser from defender John Egan to get the point at Villa Park, although it must be said it was a draw they deserved.

The West London club now have their focus fixed on PNE’s visit – Bees manager Dean Smith was at Deepdale on Tuesday night to see the 3-0 win over Cardiff.

Smith said: “It’s been two tough away games and the draw at Villa was a good point.

“If we can capitalise on it against Preston on Saturday it will be a better point.

“There aren’t many places tougher than Brighton and Villa but we believe we can go anywhere, play well and beat teams.

“These last two results have shown we’re not a team that can be taken lightly.

“But the players want more, they want to keep getting better.

“Every player can be pleased with their performance at Villa.

“We’ve just had two tough away trips, but I watched Preston on Tuesday night and they were excellent against Cardiff.

“It will be another tough one, but if our performance levels are like they have been, we will be okay.”

Assessing the display at Villa, Smith said: “I thought in the second half we were outstanding.

“To a man, we bossed the second half and restricted them to a few chances.

“Villa started the game really well and we’re disappointed with the goal, but as the game progressed I thought we got better.

“Towards the end of the first half we had a number of chances, but our decision making for the final ball wasn’t there.

“However, in the second half we dominated them.

“Sitting on a 1-0 lead is very dangerous, but we had to work hard to make them do that, and it just shows we’ve 
got a lot of quality in the 
side.”

Wednesday’s scorer Egan, a summer Bosman signing from Gillingham, now has three goals to his name in a Bees shirt – he is joint top 
scorer with striker Scott Hogan.

The defender said: “I stayed up after a corner, gambled and I found a bit of space in the box and was able to finish.

“In the second half, we put them on the back foot and we deserved a point for the second half and could have nicked all three.”

Brentford sit eighth in the Championship.

Their record is won three, drawn two and lost two, both defeats having come on the road at Huddersfield and Rotherham.

Like most clubs, the Bees were busy both recruiting and selling in the transfer 
window.

Romaine Sawyers and Rico Henry arrived from Smith’s former club Walsall.

Highly-rated goalkeeper Daniel Bentley joined from Southend to replace David Button who moved a few 
miles across the capital to Fulham.

Ahead of the deadline, they brought in Crystal Palace winger Sulley Kaikai on loan.

One player both coming and going was Emmanuel Ledesma.

The Argentinian midfielder joined on a Bosman from Rotherham in July, played twice, then left to sign for Panetolikos in Greece.