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

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest Brentford news

Wednesday, June 3, 2015
Harry Kane of England celebrates after scoring on his debut during the EURO 2016 Qualifier match between England and Lithuania.  (Photo by Ian Walton/Getty Images)

The European Under-21 Championship’s get underway in a matter of weeks and Gareth Southgate named his squad yesterday.

Read more
Tuesday, June 2, 2015
Patrick Bamford at Middlesbrough and Alex Pritchard of Brentford

England under-21 manager Gareth Southgate believes a young player finding first team football, even in the Championship, is better than being at a big successful club.

Read more
Monday, June 1, 2015
Marinus Dijkhuizen looks set to move to English football with Brentford

The Championship managerial merry-go-round is already in full swing but the new face at Griffin Park is not one of the usual lower league suspects.

Read more
Friday, May 29, 2015
Alex Pritchard will feature for Tottenham next season (Photo by Matej Divizna/Getty Images)

Alex Pritchard will be in the Tottenham first-team squad for the 2015/16 campaign, boss Mauricio Pochettino has revealed.

Read more
Thursday, May 28, 2015
Tyias Browning of Everton (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

Everton boss Roberto Martinez is set to seek a loan club for versatile defender Tyias Browning this summer.

Read more

What is this?

Near You Now

Competitions

Time to expand with the LeefiBRIDGE.

More iOS memory in a flash: Introducing Leef iBRIDGE.

Read more
The sell out 2014 event 32 Londoners, returns to the Coca-Cola London Eye!

The Coca-Cola London Eye is proud to announce that 32 Londoners will be returning this June, following last year’s sell out event. The event will feature 32 talks, in each of the London Eye’s 32 capsules on 32 extraordinary Londoners.

Read more
You could take in stunning views of London over brunch at the Sky Garden

Celebrate lighter, brighter days with the chance of winning an indulgent brunch for two with a bottle of bubbles at Darwin, the cool and casual brasserie 36 floors up at Sky Garden.

Read more

Don't Miss...