Brentford boss Thomas Frank makes claim about Saul Niguez after watching him play for Chelsea last night

Thomas Frank had a point to make about Saul Niguez’s inclusion for Chelsea against Brentford yesterday evening.

Speaking after the Bees lost 2-0 in the Carabao Cup quarter-final, Frank highlighted his opponent’s strength in depth by the fact Saul started the game, despite rarely featuring throughout the season.

Story of Saul

Despite the Spaniard’s struggles since moving from Atletico Madrid on deadline day, he is a player packed full of quality and experience.

Photo by Harriet Lander – Chelsea FC/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

During his days in Madrid, the midfielder won the league title, the Europa League and reached a Champions League final.

He has 19 international caps and nearly 400 club appearances.

Therefore, the fact Thomas Tuchel can use Saul as a backup proves Chelsea have depth beyond most teams across the continent.

Especially Brentford, who pretty much fielded the strongest line-up available to them in order to reach the semi-final.

“They are the European champions, third in the league. They have world-class players,” said Frank on the difference between the two squads.

“They started with Saul. I don’t know what he cost this summer, but it’s at least three times the money we used on one of our signings in the summer and he can’t even get a sniff in the team.

Photo by Harriet Lander – Chelsea FC/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

“I think we missed an opportunity against a top side.”

Chelsea much bigger than Brentford

Frank’s information was slightly off.

Saul joined Chelsea on loan, but there is an option of a permanent transfer for £30m (Evening Standard).

That being said, his wages alone probably trounce anyone inside the Brentford dressing room.

Plus, Frank was also remarking on the fact their guests could call upon the likes of N’Golo Kante, Reece James, Jorginho and Christian Pulisic to change the tie.

Incidentally, all four players came off the bench and had an effect on the end result.

It was Kante’s pass that set up James to a deliver cross from the right, which was then sliced into the goal by Brentford defender Pontus Jansson.

Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

Five minutes later, Pulisic earned a penalty after being tripped by the goalkeeper.

This allowed Jorginho to dispatch in trademark fashion from the spot and send Chelsea into the final four of the competition.  

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Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produces regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League.