The Premier League comes to a halt as football enters the international break, however when the competition returns on the 25th of November the Bees are to face a fit and firing Arsenal side who continue to push league leaders Manchester City at the top end of the table. This is a vastly challenging game for both sides but one player that could make this difference as he has done so often this season is the magical Mathias Jensen. So how has this underrated spark in Brentford's midfield been the engine to drive his team forward?
Mathias Jensen is the glue to Brentford's performances this season but being the unselfish creative midfielder, he is the headlines don't provide the danish man with the credit he deserves. Jensen impresses continuously with his passing range and pressing abilities. He is one of Brentford's main set piece takers and is capable of making the game look easy at times. The game on the 25th is a match that could either be won or loss in the midfield and just as manager Thomas Frank has done before he will look to deploy Jensen to challenge the likes of Declan rice who will have to keep a close eye on the 27-year-olds whereabouts.
Brentford were on a good run of form which sadly came to an end last weekend when they suffered a 3-0 defeat to Liverpool at Anfield. Regardless of the result Mathias Jensen could still be highlighted as a standout performer from the Bees side that played that day. Jensen's positional awareness was on show once more and this is something that could hurt Arsenal. As well as playing in the central role, Jensen is clever in also picking up fairly wide positions where he is awarded more time on the ball to get his head up and create. It must be a tactical instruction from Frank as often Jensen drifts to the touchline to recieve passes from the full backs. It's something Kevin De Bruyne does a lot for Manchester City as when he comes out wide it opens up the space in the midfield for others to operate. Jensen picked up a deep wide position against Liverpool and with his vision was able to distribute an inch perfect pass for Bryan Mbuemo whose effort was unfortunately stopped by Alisson. With the way Arteta gets his full backs to invert, Jensen could infiltrate the wider positions and look for the pace of Wissa and Mbuemo over the top to break down a firm Arsenal backline. Jensen has delivered a whopping 36 crosses so far this season in just 12 appearances so it goes without saying he has the attacking potential to prevail against the Bees fellow London Rivals.
Jensen has scored three goals this season and has grabbed two assists. However, these stats don't provide the full picture to why Jensen is so important. Jensen has created five major chances this season on top of the two assists so arguably should have more. Arsenal must be alert to his versatility as his attacking play isn't the only issue they will have to deal with, defensively Jensen can be a hassle to place against. Jensen could very easily play in front of the back four as that pivot a job his fellow teammate and countryman Christian Norgaard does with great composure. If you compare his season so far to the Gunners 100-million-man Declan Rice, Jensen has made the same amount of tackles 13. This proves how competitive the game could be and under the Gtech lights Brentford will have the home advantage just like they did in the thrilling 2021/22 season opener.
A final part of Jensen's game Arsenal will have to watch out for is his ball retention. Jensen has only been dispossessed eight times this season and that is to no surprise. His technical ability enables him to work his way out of tight spaces to retain possession for his side. When under pressure Jensen doesn't panic and this is key to how Brentford are able to exploit teams. Whether it's a nutmeg or Maradona Spin Jensen is a bag full of tricks and this is why he has success as a midfielder because where others may lose the ball Jensen has the brains to make the right decisions. It goes without saying the game will be competitive and I believe Jensen is one to watch, he has proven on multiple occasions that he can outwit top players and teams so it will be interesting to see how he will pose a threat to Arsenal when the two sides meet on the 25th of November.