Brentford boss Thomas Frank hails David Raya’s reaction in big win at Boro

Raya responded to his early error as Brentford won on the road.

By Press Association Published: 6 February 2021 - 6.23pm

Thomas Frank has paid tribute to Brentford goalkeeper David Raya for recovering from an early error to help defeat Middlesbrough at the Riverside Stadium.

The Bees boss was buzzing after watching his side extend an unbeaten run to 20 Championship matches to climb to within a point of leaders Norwich courtesy of a 4-1 win.

Raya made amends with a string of saves following a third minute error, when he missed a cross and ended up scoring an own goal to gift Middlesbrough the lead.

And a brace from the league’s top scorer Ivan Toney, alongside goals from Vitaly Janelt and Mathias Jensen, secured an impressive away win.

Frank said: “It’s incredible to come from behind and to win 4-1, to be fair I don’t think it was a 4-1 game. Middlesbrough deserve praise and there is a reason why they are fighting to get in the play-off positions.

“The thing is, the team deserve massive praise. To come here against one of the best defensive sides in the division, from a tactical view it is difficult to create chances against their man-marking system.

“We conceded early and we thought it could be a long afternoon with the rain, cold, soft and difficult pitch to play on. That shows a lot of character.

“But we can’t keep going down 1-0 and we need to learn from that.

“It shows a lot about the keeper to respond like he did. We needed a top goalkeeper and our goalkeeper is one of the best in the division, possibly the best.

“He had a key save from Britt Assombalonga in the first half. He then had a double save after half-time and a massive save from George Saville. We didn’t need David to step up like he did today in the 20 games we have been unbeaten for.”

Neil Warnock was left frustrated at the way his side collapsed in a defensive sense, knowing it was an opportunity for Middlesbrough to climb into the play-off zone.

But the Boro found plenty of positives despite his side loing a fourth successive home game.

Warnock said: “I don’t think I have been as satisfied with a 4-1 defeat as that, I look at where we are now and where we were … I would give them a rollicking if needed.

“We are on the wrong end of a defeat, but I think the fans will be excited now. We go to Derby and this could be the season starting now. That is the start of 18 cup finals.

“But Saville could have had a hat-trick, Britt Assombalonga could have had two, the keeper was probably man of the match with the saves he made. We haven’t made as many chances as that that for a long time.”

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