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Brentford vs Stoke City match preview



STOKE City sacked Gary Rowett this week, following a FA Cup slip up against Shrewsbury Town. The club brought in the highly rated Championship boss to guide them back to the top flight, but they come into this clash in 14th place in the second tier.

They head to a struggling Brentford side, which could be an opportunity for the club to get back on the right track. Will this visit to Griffin Park bring three points for the Potters, or are they set to struggle against an improving Bees side?

The hosts are four games unbeaten in the Championship, while it’s five games if you include their win over Oxford United at the weekend. They edged through to the Fourth Round of the FA Cup with a 1-0 win over Oxford United, which is some respite from their tough season so far. It’s been a difficult few months for Bees’ fans, who have seen their club slip from promotion contenders to become an outsider for the drop. They’ve fallen to 18th place in the league, so they need to keep picking up points.

Brentford have seemingly turned a corner, beating Bolton at home before drawing 1-1 with Norwich in their last game at Griffin Park. They’re improving defensively, a key concern for a side who have more than enough attacking talent to stay up. They’ve conceded just twice in their last four, and a misfiring Stoke side could be the perfect opposition for Brentford.

The visitors haven’t scored in their last three league games, while they are coming off the back of a 0-0 draw at struggling Bolton. While their managerial change is likely to boost Stoke in the long-run, we don’t see them bouncing back to form here. We expect a close encounter, with just 38% of Brentford’s matches seeing over 2.5 goals. The majority of Stoke’s games have been low scoring, with less than three scored in each of their last five. We’re backing under 2.5 goals here as a result, as two struggling sides search for a solid result.

Prediction: Under 3.5 match goals



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