2020 Championship Play-Off Final: Brentford vs Fulham

Brentford and Fulham will go head-to-head at Wembley Stadium on Tuesday with a place in the Premier League up for grabs.

The two sides safely navigated through their Championship play-off semi-final games, although they both had to survive a scare or two along the way.

Having finished just a couple of points outside the automatic promotion spots, each club will believe they deserve a second chance at securing a place in the top flight.

Both teams would be a big price in the Premier League betting for next season if they can claim promotion, but that won’t stop them going all-out to achieve the feat.

Read on as we take a closer look at both teams and predict who we believe will be playing in the Premier League in 2020/21.

Late season wobble stings the Bees

A nine-game unbeaten run put Brentford on the cusp of securing automatic promotion, but they failed to get the job done.

Defeats against Stoke City and Barnsley in their final two matches gifted second place to West Bromwich Albion who were promoted alongside Leeds United.

The Baggies’ 2-2 draw in their last game against Queens Park Rangers handed the Bees a golden opportunity to go up, but they came up short against Barnsley.

The defeat was undoubtedly a disappointing way to end the regular season and they could still be left to regret that result.

Fulham fall short against the top teams

Fulham’s bid to claim a top two place floundered due to their inability to pick up points in key games on the run-in.

Scott Parker’s side were beaten by both Brentford and Leeds towards the end of June, while a goalless draw at West Brom also proved costly.

They were held 1-1 at Wigan Athletic on the final day, although a victory there would ultimately have only been good enough to secure third place.

Fulham were promoted via the play-offs in 2018 courtesy of a victory over Aston Villa and they will hope that history repeats itself this time around.

Recent history favours Brentford

Brentford will head to Wembley full of confidence having lost just one of their last 10 meetings with Fulham in the Championship.

The Bees dominated their first meeting at Griffin Park earlier in the season, but were only able to find the back of the net once through Bryan Mbeumo.

That effort was enough to secure the points and they completed the double with a 2-0 victory in the reverse fixture – Said Benrahma and Emiliano Marcondes got the goals.

While Brentford have had the upper hand on Fulham in recent times, form often goes out of the window in the play-offs.

Bees bounce back against Swansea

Having suffered heartbreak in their automatic promotion bid, it would have been no surprise if Brentford failed to lift themselves for the play-offs.

However, that hasn’t been the case and they deservedly secured a 3-2 aggregate success over Swansea City after two hard fought games.

They trailed 1-0 after the first leg, but scored three times in their final ever game at Griffin Park to set up a showdown with Fulham.

Their second leg performance against the Swans was particularly impressive and they will be tough to beat if turning up at Wembley in the same mood.

Fulham survive Cardiff fightback

Goals by Josh Onomah and Nesskens Kebano sealed a 2-0 win for Fulham at Cardiff City in the first leg of their semi-final and they celebrated like the tie was over after the game.

Cardiff had other ideas and halved the deficit in the return leg through Curtis Nelson. The Cottagers quickly restored their two-goal advantage, with Kebano tapping home from close range.

The Bluebirds refused to lie down and retook the lead through Lee Tomlin in the second half, but Fulham held on to book their place in the final.

With top scorer Aleksandar Mitrovic expected to be fit to return to action at Wembley, Fulham will fancy their chances of making an immediate return to the Premier League.

Brentford v Fulham Prediction: Brentford’s recent record against Fulham is excellent and makes them worthy favourites to win the final.

However, they choked when the pressure was on in the final two games of the Premier League and may lack the fortitude handle the pressure on Tuesday.

If Mitrovic starts the game, Fulham look a great bet at odds of 49/20 to secure a return to the top flight after a one-year absence.

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