Kevin O’Connor reflects on dramatic period for Brentford

14:04 16 December 2013

Brentford captain Kevin O

Brentford captain Kevin O'Connor. Picture: Paul Thomas/Getty Images

2013 Getty Images

EXCLUSIVE: Brentford club captain Kevin O’Connor believes that the Bees are in the best position they have ever been in during his 14 years as a first team player.

December 5: Brentford were granted planning permission by Hounslow Council to build a new stadium on Lionel Road. Picture: Brentford FCDecember 5: Brentford were granted planning permission by Hounslow Council to build a new stadium on Lionel Road. Picture: Brentford FC

The 31-year-old made his debut for the club in February 2000 and has gone on to make 492 appearances for the west London outfit in all competitions.

One club players are rare in the modern era and O’Connor has seen changes in his long association with the Griffin Park outfit.

“This is my club and it always will be with the amount of time I’ve been here,” he told London24. “It’s definitely in the best position I’ve ever seen it.”

The past 11 days have been some of the most dramatic for the club in its 124 year history.

December 7: Uwe Rosler left Brentford for Wigan. Picture: Clint Hughes/Getty ImagesDecember 7: Uwe Rosler left Brentford for Wigan. Picture: Clint Hughes/Getty Images

Brentford were granted planning permission for a new stadium on Lionel Road by Hounslow Council [the application has to be rubber stamped by Mayor of London Boris Johnson and Secretary of State Eric Pickles] before Uwe Rosler left for Wigan less than 48 hours later.

“I was keeping my ear out [on the planning meeting],” O’Connor added. “I was watching it on YouTube.

“It was a great response to the yes vote. It’s a tremendous step for the club.”

Having been at the club so long it would surprise nobody to see O’Connor still at the club for the first game at Lionel Road.

December 10: Mark Warburton was appointed as new Brentford manager. Picture: Rob Munro/Getty ImagesDecember 10: Mark Warburton was appointed as new Brentford manager. Picture: Rob Munro/Getty Images

“I don’t know,” he said. “It’s two and a half years away.

“It’s brilliant for the club. I’ll be there [in the stadium] no matter what.”

Rosler’s departure came as a blow to morale but the family reasons behind his departure were understood by the captain, whose main focus is on helping new boss Mark Warburton, who had been sporting director during the German boss’ time at Griffin Park.

“It was a big blow,” he added. “When you see how well the team and club has progressed. I am gutted to see him go.

December 10: Frank McParland joined Brentford as sporting director. Picture: Tom Moore/London24December 10: Frank McParland joined Brentford as sporting director. Picture: Tom Moore/London24

“I wish him all the best but we’ve got a new manager and long may it continue the way we’re going.”

O’Connor, who made three appearances for Republic of Ireland’s under-21 side, has seen Brentford have 15 men managing the club for at least one game.

And he believes that the appointment of Warburton is a positive one for the club.

“There’ve been a few,” he said. “I’ve seen off a few managers.

December 14: Jonathan Douglas (8) scores a stoppage time winner against Oldham. Picture: Rob Munro/Getty ImagesDecember 14: Jonathan Douglas (8) scores a stoppage time winner against Oldham. Picture: Rob Munro/Getty Images

“I think it’s a good appointment and keep things going as they are in the league.”

He added: “He’s probably going to have a few tweaks here and there. It’s been very successful the past two and half years.

“We lost the manager but Warbs has come in and not changed the dressing room. It’s a new face with one or two ideas.”

Another new face in at the club is Frank McParland who has stepped in as sporting director.

McParland comes with excellent pedigree and is credited for bringing the likes of Raheem Sterling and Jon Flanagan through the ranks at Liverpool – both scored in Sunday’s 5-0 win over Tottenham.

The captain said: “He’s got bags of experience so I’m sure he can step into the role really well.

“I’ve only seen him a couple of times. Hopefully I’ll get to know him and pick his brains a bit. “

O’Connor watched from the bench as Jonathan Douglas’ stoppage time goal hand the Bees a victory that moves them up to third in the league table.

“It’s one of them where I wasn’t sure if it was going to come or not,” he said. “We’ve got another late goal that end – it’s unbelievable.

He added: “There’s been a lot going on. We’re pleased the win today for the new manager and keep us going in the league.”

The one-club man had hoped that Alan Kernaghan and Peter Farrell would stay as Warburton’s coaching team but the pair have decided to leave the club.

The 31-year-old has been taking his coaching badges and would be honoured if he was asked to help out in that department saying: “I’ll have to be asked first but I’ll be more than willing.”

Related articles

Live Blog Transfer Window Live - July 31

 

Latest Stories

Yesterday, 12:17
Kim Kalkowski, owner of Cakes 'n' Treats in Camden Town, says she has been unfairly targeted by anti-fascist groups

The owner of a vegan cake shop fears for her business after anti-fascist activists launched a “mistaken” campaign to stop people visiting her store.

Read more
Yesterday, 15:39
Dr Dhanuson Dharmasena (front) leaves Westminster Magistrates Court earlier this year.

A Whittington doctor facing the UK’s first prosecution linked to alleged female genital mutilation has denied any wrongdoing.

Read more
Yesterday, 14:39
The vehicle on fire in Prince of Wales Road.

A bus carrying pensioners was left stranded and full of smoke after a camper van in Kentish Town caught fire.

Read more

Promotions

Renault-Zoe

The Renault ZOE follows on from the introduction of the electric Fluence ZE and Twizy, but unlike the former, the Zoe was designed from the ground up as an electric vehicle.

When no simple way to find Real Ale was at hand, 4 Ale enthusiasts got together to allow anyone with a smart phone to find Real Ale no matter where they happened to be, this was the birth of the Perfect Pint app.

London24 have partnered up with The Week magazine to offer you a complimentary issue – delivered free to your door.

TOP STORIES

Quizzes

Guess the managers quiz

The managerial merry-go-round spins quickly these days so do you think you’ve got the knowledge to recognise the faces of all these football bosses?

Read more
Which London club play their home games at this stadium...? (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)

Do you fancy yourself as a football ground buff? Test your stadium knowledge with this brilliant quiz.

Read more
Mark Warburton. (Photo by Rob Munro/Getty Images)

Do you think you know your Brentford? Well now is your chance to put your knowledge to the test.

Read more