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BRENTFORD have at last got that monkey off their back when it comes to away travel and that can t be good news for Wrexham.

BRENTFORD have at last got that monkey off their back when it comes to away travel and that can t be good news for Wrexham.

Last week's 2-0 win at Bristol City was the first time since October that the North London side had gained all three points on the road, and manager Steve Coppell will be hoping to repeat the trick this Saturday (kick-off 3pm).

Since they demolished Wrexham 3-0 at Griffin Park earlier this season, the Bees have lost the services of soontobe out-of-contract midfielder Gavin Mahon to Watford in a £150,000 deal.

The other contract rebel, Welshman Paul Evans, says he won't decide his future until the end of the season, but there will be no shortage of takers for the dead ball specialist who has scored 13 goals this term and he will only stay with Brentford if they are promoted.

On the plus side, Irishman Martin Rowlands emerged from the treatment room to score against the Robins last week. He had been suffering with a hernia problem all season and his return to the team has been like signing a new player for Coppell.

Keeper Olafur Gottskalksson has been made available on a free transfer, so young stopper Paul Smith will be in goal. He will marshall a back four that sees another promising youngster, Michael Dobson, at right-back and pacey Ijiah Anderson on the left.

In the centre expect cultured Icelandic international Invar Ingimarsson and the powerful Darren Powell to line up alongside each other.

Rowlands will line up on the right side of midfield with Steve Hunt, a capture from Crystal Palace during the close season, on the left flank. Evans should be in the centre alongside youngster Steven Sidwell, who is on a seasonlong loan from Arsenal.

Up front is a partnership that has produced 34 goals so far this season. The much-improved Lloyd Owusu has got 16 of them and another loan star, Ben Burgess from Blackburn, has the other 18.

Wrexham face rivals Cardiff at home on Tuesday in the semifinals of the FAW Premier Cup.

Due to BBC 2 Wales TV coverage, the match will kick-off at 6.55pm. Cardiff's form has picked up under new manager Lennie Lawrence, and with the pace of striker Robert Earnshaw and the shooting prowess of captain Graham Kavanagh, Wrexham will be in for a tough test if the Bluebirds field their strongest side.


David Holmes
Chief News Reporter
David Norbury
Mike Fuller
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