How Brentford could line-up on opening day of 2022-23 season vs Leicester City
After finishing 13th in their first season in the Premier League, Brentford will be hoping to avoid second season syndrome in the top-flight ahead of the 2022-23 campaign.
Thomas Frank will be hoping to avoid the dreaded downturn in form with the Bees after an impressive maiden campaign in the top-flight.
The West London side finished 11 points above the drop zone and were only five points off securing a top-half finish.
The Brentford Community Stadium looked set to be dragged into a relegation dogfight before the influential Christian Eriksen inspired the side to safety.
In the 10 games the Denmark international started under Frank, Brentford picked up 22 points and moved comfortably clear of the dreaded relegation zone.
Brentford travel to Leicester City on Sunday, 7 August for their opening game in the 2022-23 Premier League campaign.
With the Bees’ second season in the Premier League kicking off in five weeks time, TBR takes a look at how Brentford could line-up on opening day of 2022-23 season.
How Brentford could line-up on opening day of 2022-23 season
The one-time Spain international David Raya will likely remain Frank’s number one despite missing a third of last season due to a knee injury.
The 26-year-old, who joined Brentford from Blackburn Rovers three years ago, will be hoping to have an impressive start to the campaign and grab the attention of Spain boss Luis Enrique with the 2022 World Cup looming.
Brentford are close to finalising a £14m deal to sign talented Scotland full-back Aaron Hickey from Serie A side Bologna.
The four-time Scotland international will bolster Frank’s options and the 20-year-old, who predominantly plays at left-back, could slot in at right-back.
The former Hearts man looks set to become the club’s new record signing and eclipse the £13.5m that was paid to Celtic to sign Kristoffer Ajer.
With Hickey potentially being used on the right ahead of the likes of Ajer and Sergio Canos, Frank will be able to deploy Rico Henry at left-back alongside first-choice centre-back pairing Pontus Jansson and Ethan Pinnock.
Frank will be hoping to unleash another all Denmark midfield trio but that will all depend on which club Christian Eriksen decides to sign for.
Following his six-month spell in West London the former Inter Milan playmaker is a free agent and is considering offers from Brentford and Erik ten Hag’s Manchester United.
Given that Brentford are prepared to smash their wage structure to re-sign Eriksen, the familiarity and success that the former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder has had in London could see him extend his stay in the capital over joining the Red Devils.
After scoring 12 Premier League goals last season, Ivan Toney will likely remain Frank’s main man and the former Newcastle United striker will once again be hoping to combine to devastating effect with Bryan Mbeumo.
But it looks like that Frank will be adding an exciting young English talent to his impressive forward line.
According to the Telegraph, Brentford are pushing to sign Hull City and England Under-21 forward Keane Lewis-Potter in a deal that could reach £20m.
The 21-year-old scored 12 Championship goals last season and netted 13 goals in the second tier the season prior.
Lewis-Potter has shown he’s one of the most exciting youngsters to shine in the Championship and it looks like Brentford have won the race to sign the electric winger.