Brentford boss Thomas Frank gave Ivan Toney full marks for his dominant display at Wolves on Saturday and compared his partnership with Bryan Mbeumo to Manchester United’s famous pairing of Dwight Yorke and Andy Cole.
Toney, who was a failed medical away from joining Wolves as a teenager in 2014, was instrumental in Brentford’s first ever Premier League away win, earning and scoring a penalty, setting up Mbeumo for the second and having two goals disallowed in the first half alone as the Bees won 2-0 at Molineux.
Toney then chipped in defensively as Brentford came under pressure after Shandon Baptiste’s 65th-minute red card, and Frank said it was a complete performance from the 25-year-old.
“That was a 10-out-of-10 performance,” Frank said. “I’m extremely pleased with him, but it’s also the person behind the player. He’s a fantastic person with a top mentality and a presence on the pitch, everything.
“He’s ticked every box, and what an assist by the way to Bryan. Again we see Bryan and Ivan’s relationship, the dynamic duo. It’s not the same but it’s a little bit like (Dwight) Yorke and (Andy Cole).”
Frank could revel in a strong performance at both ends from his players, who looked far more dangerous in attack but also stood firm defensively despite coming under increasing pressure once down to 10 men.
Despite the man advantage for 25 minutes, Wolves failed to register a shot on target, and it was Brentford who went closest to scoring again as Mbeumo saw a late effort come back off the crossbar.
“Of course (the red card) changed the make up a bit more but I cannot praise the players enough for the determination and the fight,” Frank said.
“We were still brave with a 4-3-2 formation and trying to build for the third goal and when you look through the whole game in which Wolves are a very good team and we’re winning, we fully deserved it as a team.”
It was a fourth defeat in five for Wolves, who have failed to score in every league game this season except last weekend’s 2-0 win over Watford.
Half-time substitute Hwang Hee-chan added some much-needed impetus but the closest they came to scoring was a deflected Adama Traore strike in the first half which came back off the bar.
Bruno Lage admitted Wolves’ lack of cutting edge was a major concern, but said it was a long-term issue which would take time to solve.
“It is not just my concern, we are concerned with what happened in the past,” Lage said. “The team doesn’t have a good average of goals.
“That’s why we came with an ambition to create more chances and to score more goals.
“We had at least two good chances to score goals. This is a question not just for now, but for before and our way to work. We need to continue to work, create chances and score.”
One of Wolves’ best second-half chances came to Raul Jimenez but the Mexico forward – who missed most of last season after suffering a fractured skull – angrily ripped off his head protection after he headed wide.
“I think it was a little bit of frustration,” Lage said. “It was a good ball, a good cross, a good chance for us, and if you score then there’s plenty of time to come back into the game.
“I don’t think he was uncomfortable (with the head band) but I think it was just frustration.”