Brentford boss Uwe Rosler faces a battle to keep hold of his top stars this January, and he fears a profitable Christmas and reaching the FA Cup fourth round could prove a double-edged sword for the squad’s future.
A Marcello Trotta brace, plus goals from Clayton Donaldson and Harry Forrester, saw the Bees beat Bradford City at the second attempt to set-up an FA Cup third round trip to Southend on January 5.
First, the Bees host Stevenage on Saturday before facing Colchester United, Shrewsbury Town and AFC Bournemouth over the festive period, before the clash with the League Two Shrimpers.
Coming out of the other side of that run in a positive framce of mind will give a clear indication of how realistic the club’s promotion ambitions are.
Rosler admitted that could be key to securing the futureof talented midfielder Forrester beyond the summer, while at the same time attracting more attention to his star players.
But that would not affect his desire to continue a run of form that sees his side having only lost twice in their past 21 league and cup games.
“We have offered three or four players new contracts and hopefully they will sign,” said Rosler on Tuesday night.
“The better you do as a team the more recognition you get as individuals. Bigger clubs come trying to pinch players and pinch staff. We have to hold on to them.
“If we get through to mid-January well – not winning every game, but well – then we will definitely be where we want to be.
“The game against Southend will be tough, but there is a massive reward for us. When you are going through a run like we are, you want to give everything to make it count.
“The lads have been terrific. In terms of how much they have invested in keeping fit, coming in for treatment, coming in for light training and resting, they are top professionals.
“That is the only way to keep this run going. You can’t go into a comfort zone you have to go to the max.”
Trotta’s penalty on the stroke of half-time ensured Tuesday’s clash went to extra-time, in which ex-Bees Alan Connell gave his side the lead again before Trotta, Donaldson and Forrester struck to secure Brentford’s safe passage.
“Football wise I was very happy with the way we played. We created in the first 30 mintues four or five one-on-one chances,” he added.
“I wish we had showed a bit more will power to score and the finishes were too casual.
“Our three substitutes (Toumani Diagouraga, Donaldson, Forrester) decided the game. Overall I’m happy, but irritated we had to play 120 minutes.”