London (AFP) – Brentford manager Thomas Frank says his side will ignore the ominous omens of their painful play-off history when they face Swansea for a place in the Premier League on Saturday.
Brentford have failed to win promotion via the play-offs in nine previous attempts in the Football League.
The Bees were beaten by Fulham in last year’s Championship play-off final, but they have another chance to finally end their curse at Wembley this weekend.
Frank’s side are back in the second-tier promotion showdown after finishing third, seven points ahead of fourth-placed Swansea, whom they beat in last year’s play-off semi-finals.
And the Danish coach is not concerned about his players being affected by their club’s previous failures.
“I’m not superstitious, at all,” Frank said on Friday. “Of course I know how the human mind works and, of course, you’ve heard stories about black cats or ladders and all that.
“If it comes into your mind, you think ‘What should I do?’ So I understand why people think things like that but personally I can’t live my life like that. I need to keep going.
“My approach is to analyse things, make sure we do better, and there’s a lot of emotions about how we make the narrative of going into a final like this.”
Brentford’s two regular-season meetings with Swansea both ended in 1-1 draws.
After Brentford battled back from a 2-0 aggregate deficit to defeat Bournemouth in the play-off semi-finals, Frank is expecting another tense, nerve-jangling encounter.
“We are excited, looking forward to it and we know everything is up in the air until Saturday afternoon,” he said.
“The atmosphere is calm, relaxed and focused, with the understanding we are facing a Swansea team who have had a fantastic season.
“We’ve played them twice, both 1-1 draws. It’s going to be an unbelievably tight game, settled on the finest of margins.”