Ollie Watkins admits he and his Brentford teammates are ‘drained’ after narrowly missing out on automatic promotion to the Premier League.
The Bees missed a golden opportunity to join Leeds in the top flight with West Brom only managing a draw at home to QPR on the final day of the Championship season.
A win at home to strugglers Barnsley would have been enough to see Brentford sneak into the top two but they suffered a 2-1 defeat at Griffin Park, a result that also ensured Barnsley’s survival for another season.
All is not lost for Brentford as they can still reach the Premier League via the play-offs – where they’ll face Swansea in the first leg of their semi-final tie on Sunday.
And Watkins insists his side will be ready to mount an assault on trying to make it into the Premier League.
Speaking about the loss to Barnsley, he told talkSPORT: “[I’m feeling] A bit drained. It’s a little bit hard to be positive, but we’ve got a game in a few days time.
“If anyone said at the start of the season that we would finish third and in the play-offs, we all would have taken that.
“We’ve done unbelievably coming back from lockdown. The boys are proud of what we’ve achieved, but we’ve still got more to offer and we’ve got to pick ourselves up and go again on Sunday now.
“I missed a big opportunity last night. It played on my mind a little bit, but there is no time to dwell.
“I’ve got to pick myself back up and drive the team on for Sunday. I’m sure I’m capable of that and I know the boys are capable of bouncing back as well.
“These things happen in football. The worst case scenario is we’ve got to play, hopefully, three more games, so let’s just see what happens.”
Brentford were the form team of the restart as they won their first seven matches, however, the defeat to Barnsley as well as a loss to Stoke in their previous outing will raise question marks about their credentials going into the play-offs.
But Watkins says there’s still a lot of belief in the Brentford camp that their promotion dreams will become a reality.
He added: “Yeah, of course [the belief is still there]. It’s hard to win seven games in a row in the Championship. We know what we can do and we’ve got to keep it going.”