Brentford Finally Breaks Through In A Promotion Playoff To Return To Top Flight After 74 Years

Pull out the Titanic old lady memes because after 74 long years Brentford is finally returning to England’s top flight. The Bees scored two goals within 20 minutes and held Swansea City at bay for a 2-0 victory in the EFL Championship promotion final in front of 11,689 fans on Saturday at Wembley Stadium.

Leading scorer Ivan Toney scored a 10th-minute penalty and Emiliano Marcondes finished off a quick counterattack 10 minutes later to put Brentford on its way. Coach Thomas Frank and the Bees will join Championship champion Norwich City and runner-up Watford in the Premier League next season, replacing Sheffield United, West Brom and Fulham, the latter of which denied Brentford in the playoff final last year. The Bees are the 50th club to reach the Premier League since its founding nearly 30 years ago. 

Last Time Brentford Was In Top Flight

Brentford is back in the top flight for the first time since the 1946-47 season. Since then, it’s been one promotion playoff failure after another. Coming into this season, the Bees had lost in an incredible nine straight promotion playoffs. 

Last year, Brentford lost 2-1 to Fulham after a stupefying 40-yard free-kick goal in extra time of the promotion final. This year, the Bees finished third, four points away from an automatic promotion spot — but they finally broke through.

After coming from behind to beat Bournemouth 3-2 on aggregate in the semifinals, Brentford led nearly from start to finish to finally break its promotion playoff curse.

Brentford vs. Swansea Highlights

The Bees calmed their nerves early when Swans keeper Freddie Woodman took down Bryan Mbeumo in the penalty area. Ivan Toney snuck the spot kick just inside the left post and inches past Woodman’s sprawling arm, and Brentford had a lead to protect.

The Bees doubled their advantage 10 minutes later and fans began believing. A clearance from their own box sparked a counterattack that ended with Marcondes first-timing a Mads Rasmussen cross inside the near post. 

Moments after the second, Toney blistered the crossbar with a viscious volley, but the ball bounced straight onto the line and not over the line. But it didn’t matter — the Bees held on to the 2-0 lead to win its way into the Premier League.

Swansea’s attempts to get back in the match were derailed when Swansea midfielder Jay Fulton caught the back ankle of Mathias Jensen to receive a straight red card. 

Brentford hung on from there and after a lengthy stoppage time the referee blew the final whistle and celebrations began.

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