Brentford boss Thomas Frank admitted his emotions were running high after Josh Dasilva’s late equalizer netted a 2-2 draw in their Premier League opener at Leicester.
Dasilva came down from the bench to fire a spectacular finish into the top corner and complete Brentford’s fightback after leading 2-0.
Frank said it was a historic moment for the Bees midfielder, who returned to action in February after being sidelined for 18 months with a career-threatening hip problem followed by injury to the hamstrings.
Frank said: “When he first scored I was of course very happy with the equalizer because you have to fight so hard for every point in the Premier League.
“But after the game in the locker room, I thought of Josh and wanted to say a few kind words to him.
“It was emotional because he’s been out for 18 months, he’s a player and someone I’ve worked with for four years. He’s a fantastic person.
“To see him come back to the level we know, produce that best moment which also gave us a point, was very emotional and I’m very happy for him.”
The Foxes were overwhelmingly dominant at the King Power Stadium and cruised to 2-0 with less than half an hour to play thanks to goals in each half from Thomas Castagne and Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall.
Ivan Toney sparked Brentford’s unlikely fightback as he reduced the deficit in the 62nd minute before Dasilva’s superb 86th-minute thunderbolt.
Frank added: “Such a big credit to the mentality of the players. This group of players, just wow!
“A lot of teams would have dropped and not come back in the game, but we were running so hard.
“I think we looked in good shape. We were on top at the end of the game and of course there is a fairy tale story for Josh Dasilva, being out for 18 months.
“So happy with a lot of things, but a lot of things to work on.”
Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers was in a philosophical mood after watching his side outplay their rivals for long stretches.
Youri Tielemans hit a post with a deflected effort in the first half and Wesley Fofana also hit the woodwork in the second half.
Rodgers is the only Premier League boss who hasn’t strengthened his squad this summer, but overall he was pleased with his side’s performance.
He said: “For 60-65 minutes we were excellent in the game, in total control, we played very well, our pressing was good, our football was great.
“Big credit to the players because we worked on something for five weeks in pre-season, then in the last game (of pre-season) with injuries, we had to change the structure, and we got it very good game.”
Rodgers, without injured duo Harvey Barnes and Ricardo Pereira – the latter sidelined for 18 months after rupturing his Achilles – were disappointed with Brentford’s goals.
He added: “The first just came from a lack of focus in our organization following a throw-in and they scored from a space that didn’t exist before.
“At 2-1 it changes the dynamic and they can throw anything at it. We have to be better with the ball at that point and control the game much better than we did.