Brentford v Ipswich: Players who turned out for both clubs
- Credit: Archant
Ipswich and Brentford may only have met 10 times in competitive action, but there are plenty of playing links between the two sides.
The most recent of course is Jonathan Douglas, who moved from west London to Suffolk earlier this week, having clocked up 186 games for the Bees and also captained the Griffin Park side during his four years with the club.
He’s not the only former Bee who will be lining up for Town this afternoon, with diminutive midfielder Jay Tabb having etched himself as a firm favourite with the Brentford fans during his time there in the mid-2000s. Tabb started his career at Griffin Park and went on to make more than 150 appearances for the club, before moving on to Coventry and then Reading.
Tommy Smith has also spent time with the Bees, albeit briefly while on loan in 2010, as he made eight appearances during the early days of his career before a similar spell at Colchester.
Griffin Park has been a popular spot for Ipswich youngsters in need of first team football while out on loan, with Jordan Rhodes and Dean Bowditch both having temporary spells there.
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Rhodes, already touted as a star, was sent to Brentford in January 2009 and made a good impact with seven goals in 14 starts, which included an impressive hat-trick against a Shrewsbury side including future Norwich player Grant Holt.
Bowditch’s loan was less fruitful as it included two goals in nine games, in what was his last temporary switch before moving to Yeovil on a free transfer.
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It’s not just young English players who have turned out for both teams, either, two of Ipswich’s foreign imports have also spent time with Brentford.
The Bees actually paid £750,000 to Crystal Palace for Hermann Hreidarsson in 1998 and an impressive season saw his value rise to £2.5million when he moved to Wimbledon a year later. The big defender moved on for a fourth straight summer in 2000 when he moved to Portman Road, and the rest is history.
Another left-sided defender was Pim Balkestein, who certainly made less of an impact in Suffolk, and as a result was twice sent out on loan to Brentford before making his move permanent in 2010. Following spells with Rochdale and AFC Wimbledon, he’s now back in Holland playing for VVV Venlo in the second division.
Striker Nicky Forster will be remembered more for his time with Brentford than with Ipswich, after a tough year at Portman Road in 2005/06, but he had two spells with the Bees as he scored 40 goals in over 100 games at the beginning of his career, before another campaign as he was drawing his playing career to a close in 2011. He ended that spell as caretaker manager, winning nine of 21 games before departing at the end of the season.
Another man who has played for Ipswich and led the Bees is Terry Butcher, who became something of an icon during his playing career for the Blues, but couldn’t find success with Brentford as he departed less than six months into his reign in 2007.