“We can’t win by spending more money than our competitors so we have to identify competitive edges which will allow us to compete with clubs who enjoy much bigger budgets”.
The words were actually spoken by Brentford’s co-director of football Rasmus Ankersen, but could easily have come out of PPG Canalside.
It seems Huddersfield Town and the West London club have things in common as they prepare to meet at Griffin Park.
Town, 19th in the Championship, would like to be up in 10th like Brentford, and hope to climb the table under David Wagner.
Having gone European with Marinus Dijkhuizen, the Bees went down a more traditional path to bring in Dean Smith from Walsall as team chief after the Dutchman was ditched in September.
But the club’s unusual model for making it to the Premier League remains unchanged.
It features a continental-style structure with a head coach and sporting director and uses ‘mathematical modelling’ to help recruit players.
The blueprint for Brentford’s future has already been tested 800 miles away at FC Midtjylland, who last season won Denmark’s Superliga for the first time in their history.
The majority shareholder in the Jutland club is Matthew Benham, the former hedge fund manager and professional gambler who also owns Brentford.
Ankersen is chairman at Midtjylland as well as co-director of football at Brentford with Phil Giles, the head of quantitative sports research at Smartodds, a company also owned by Benham.
The pair arrived at Brentford in the summer after the departure of Mark Warburton, the manager who led the club to promotion from League I in 2014 and last season’s Championship play-offs.
Benham explained: “When changes to the football department were first announced, we were very clear that we wanted Brentford to be a club that could reach the Premier League and stay there.
“We believe this can only be achieved sustainability with an innovative approach to player recruitment and the overall management of the club.
“Rasmus and Phil can help us achieve our aim. The director of football role is a big one and splitting it means we can add the expertise of both of them to our management structure.”
The recent recruits who could be facing Town include Danish international striker Lasse Vibe, signed from Sweden’s Gothenburg and Brentford’s six-goal second top scorer behind Alan Judge.
Philipp Hofmann is a former Germany Under 21 striker, Konstantin Kerschbaumer an Austrian midfielder and Maxime Colin a French defender.
Brentford also signed Josh McEachran from Chelsea and have taken his fellow midfielder John Swift on loan from Stamford Bridge.
While Town were beating Rotherham United on Tuesday, Smith’s side were defeated by a last-gasp goal at Cardiff City.
It was a first defeat in six and only a second in 11.
And Smith’s side showed their battling qualities by fighting back from two down before Kenwyne Jones clinched Cardiff’s 3-2 victory.