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The Dark Blues

Kevin McDonald

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Fill your boots. First 20 mins will be of greatest interest to you. One of the most naturally gifted played I've ever seen in the Dark Blue. On a different planet on his day.

 

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Crazy to think he was absolutely bossing games at age 17/18. Such a classy player. Up there with the best I have seen in my lifetime, no doubt about it.

Fill your boots. First 20 mins will be of greatest interest to you. One of the most naturally gifted played I've ever seen in the Dark Blue. On a different planet on his day.  

Lads Fulham are my English team.. Supported them since I was a wee boy so you can imagine my delight when we signed Kevin Mcdonald.. Nervous about tonight and we are underdogs but you just never know

Crazy to think he was absolutely bossing games at age 17/18. Such a classy player. Up there with the best I have seen in my lifetime, no doubt about it.

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Good luck tonight for Kevin in the play off final.  Superb player for us the short time he was here.  

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Lads Fulham are my English team.. Supported them since I was a wee boy so you can imagine my delight when we signed Kevin Mcdonald.. Nervous about tonight and we are underdogs but you just never know in a one off match.. Mcdonald to come off the bench and get the winner.. Its in the stars 🤞🤞

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A good listen, sounds like he certainly lost his way for a bit on the partying, career hanging in the balance and gets pissed the night before his trial 😮 like the confidence he has in himself but got to question attitude at times, couldn’t imagine a player not wanting his team to score because it may jeopardise the Xmas night out plans 

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Bit a sickener for Brentford. Such a small club they don't even have hospo but just came within a whisker of the Premier League and a potential £265m jackpot.

How come one of the best team's in the English Championship also have one of smallest budgets? Sounds like they've had some kind of Peter Marr-type revolution but been a lot smarter.

Interesting write-up on Talksport about them....

-----

Their weapon of choice is football analytics, which helps them scour the globe for under-performing individuals with high potential, but no-one knows it yet.

Brentford owner Benham, an Oxford physics graduate, has spent decades becoming a football scientist, removing outcome bias and other wrong judgements we make without even realising.

Even in 2008, his mathematical methods of evaluating performance were more sophisticated than the current algorithm used for expected goals (xG).

He made his millions through a company called Smartodds: a team of whizz-kid statisticians who calculate the outcome of football matches to gain an edge over bookmakers.

So when he became majority shareholder of his boyhood club in 2012, he already had the perfect model to guide them from the third tier of English football to the edge of the Premier League.

Benham’s tools compare the relative quality of clubs around the world, helping Brentford find your classic Football Manager wonderkids, usually on the Continent, where the player market is less inflated than England.

“It’s not that data tells you who to pick, data can tell you where to look,” Ankersen added.

“Using data and using models to compare the strength of different teams and different leagues, we’ve been able to identify some of the markets or some of the leagues that have a higher level than people think.

“This is what Matthew has been doing for the last 25 years – finding inefficiencies in the market and exploiting them.”

There’s no better example than Neal Maupay. Brentford picked him up from the second tier of French football for £1.6m just three years ago. There were rumours Napoli were willing to pay £40m for him earlier this year.

“If players were fully developed, Brentford wouldn’t be able to buy them. You get an unfinished package, and you need to make it better,” Ankersen said.

Maupay, sold for £19.8m, was comfortably Brentford’s best player last season, and for most clubs, losing such a star on deadline day would signal trouble.

But departures at Brentford only pave the way for the next big thing. For example, Ollie Watkins and Said Benrahma are among the most highly-rated players in the Championship. Neither of them cost Brentford more than £2m, both are now worth eight figures.

Ankersen said: “You try and find a stock that is undervalued, right? It’s cheaper than it should be, then you get the upside.

“The key is being able to identify undervalued talent in the market, develop them, and then sell them on for profit, gradually building more value into the squad and gradually increasing the level of the squad.

“Now we come to a place where we have a huge amount of value in the squad and we’re good enough to compete at the top of the league.”

The Bees were widely scrutinised for scrapping their academy in place of a B-team in 2012, but that has proved another masterstroke.

After spending £2m a year and failing to produce enough first-team players or make profit, they decided to start picking up rejects from big clubs around them in London, giving them another chance.

Since that decision, Brentford have had 15 debuts in the first team, and sold Chris Mepham [a B team product rejected by Chelsea] to Bournemouth for £12.2m.

The average age of their squad this season is 24 years and 336 days, which is the second-youngest in the Championship behind Barnsley.

It’s just one of the many ways the Bees have totally flipped the script and revolutionised the way small clubs should operate.

With a shiny, new, 17,000-seater stadium opening next season, their transformation into a force of English football could be complete if they win promotion.

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1 hour ago, Cobra said:

Bit a sickener for Brentford. Such a small club they don't even have hospo but just came within a whisker of the Premier League and a potential £265m jackpot.

How come one of the best team's in the English Championship also have one of smallest budgets? Sounds like they've had some kind of Peter Marr-type revolution but been a lot smarter.

Interesting write-up on Talksport about them....

-----

Their weapon of choice is football analytics, which helps them scour the globe for under-performing individuals with high potential, but no-one knows it yet.

Brentford owner Benham, an Oxford physics graduate, has spent decades becoming a football scientist, removing outcome bias and other wrong judgements we make without even realising.

Even in 2008, his mathematical methods of evaluating performance were more sophisticated than the current algorithm used for expected goals (xG).

He made his millions through a company called Smartodds: a team of whizz-kid statisticians who calculate the outcome of football matches to gain an edge over bookmakers.

So when he became majority shareholder of his boyhood club in 2012, he already had the perfect model to guide them from the third tier of English football to the edge of the Premier League.

Benham’s tools compare the relative quality of clubs around the world, helping Brentford find your classic Football Manager wonderkids, usually on the Continent, where the player market is less inflated than England.

“It’s not that data tells you who to pick, data can tell you where to look,” Ankersen added.

“Using data and using models to compare the strength of different teams and different leagues, we’ve been able to identify some of the markets or some of the leagues that have a higher level than people think.

“This is what Matthew has been doing for the last 25 years – finding inefficiencies in the market and exploiting them.”

There’s no better example than Neal Maupay. Brentford picked him up from the second tier of French football for £1.6m just three years ago. There were rumours Napoli were willing to pay £40m for him earlier this year.

“If players were fully developed, Brentford wouldn’t be able to buy them. You get an unfinished package, and you need to make it better,” Ankersen said.

Maupay, sold for £19.8m, was comfortably Brentford’s best player last season, and for most clubs, losing such a star on deadline day would signal trouble.

But departures at Brentford only pave the way for the next big thing. For example, Ollie Watkins and Said Benrahma are among the most highly-rated players in the Championship. Neither of them cost Brentford more than £2m, both are now worth eight figures.

Ankersen said: “You try and find a stock that is undervalued, right? It’s cheaper than it should be, then you get the upside.

“The key is being able to identify undervalued talent in the market, develop them, and then sell them on for profit, gradually building more value into the squad and gradually increasing the level of the squad.

“Now we come to a place where we have a huge amount of value in the squad and we’re good enough to compete at the top of the league.”

The Bees were widely scrutinised for scrapping their academy in place of a B-team in 2012, but that has proved another masterstroke.

After spending £2m a year and failing to produce enough first-team players or make profit, they decided to start picking up rejects from big clubs around them in London, giving them another chance.

Since that decision, Brentford have had 15 debuts in the first team, and sold Chris Mepham [a B team product rejected by Chelsea] to Bournemouth for £12.2m.

The average age of their squad this season is 24 years and 336 days, which is the second-youngest in the Championship behind Barnsley.

It’s just one of the many ways the Bees have totally flipped the script and revolutionised the way small clubs should operate.

With a shiny, new, 17,000-seater stadium opening next season, their transformation into a force of English football could be complete if they win promotion.

Thats all well and fine but you not going to be happy for me tonight?? all kidding aside I'm absolutely delighted but I'm gutted for Brentford.. Would love to see them in the Premier league too 

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1 minute ago, wearedarkblue87 said:

Thats all well and fine but you not going to be happy for me tonight?? all kidding aside I'm absolutely delighted but I'm gutted for Brentford.. Would love to see them in the Premier league too 

I am pleased for Kev Mac. Great player. Loved watching him in dark blue.

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A bit of a weird but enjoyable watch. He came across as very honest if a little selfish but I suspect that's professional football. As an aside, I salute his organising his work around heavy drinking, that's how I rolled. I'm still fond of prioritising the bevvy over the trivia. 🍻

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4 hours ago, WeighorstsWang said:

will smith no GIF

That accent. 

He’s fae Carsnootie and lived down in engerland for the past 10 odd years. 🤣

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