Tony Mowbray says the visit of in-form Brentford represents a ‘big challenge’ and hopes his players’ performance can inspire the Ewood Park crowd.

Mowbray felt anxiety emanated from the stands through to the players as Rovers edged out bottom side Barnsley 3-2.

That made it back-to-back home wins, after overcoming Sheffield Wednesday earlier this month, but just a second in nine matches.

With 15 of their 21 points collected on home soil, Mowbray hopes home comforts will prove decisions as they welcome a Brentford side who have racked up nine points, and nine goals, in their last three away matches.

Asked if things had taken a turn for the better at home, after defeats to Charlton and Luton earlier in the season, Mowbray said: “You wouldn’t have thought so the other day. We just have to keep going.

“Our overall record at Ewood Park is pretty good over three years.

“I feel the disappointment and frustration of losing to Charlton and Luton, two newly promoted League One teams, but no-one else has been able to beat us.

“This is our big challenge, a team who has won five out of six. They’re in real good form, scored three away at Wigan, three at QPR, three at Swansea, it’s a test for us.

“It’s one hopefully the supporters get behind the team and we give ourselves the best chance to try and win another game.”

Mowbray believes the players’ spirit, something he felt got them over the line against Barnsley, is deserving of the fans’ support.

He added: “I think the team encourage the supporters, it’s not for me to tell them.

“I have expressed my own views on the supporters for three years on how positive it is.

“It’s not huge numbers, we’re not selling the place out, but generally the supporters have been very good with the team. That’s been reflected in the performances.

“We aren’t the best football team in this division by a long way, but we have a big heart and the team keep fighting and that’s reflected with the last couple of results.

“My own view is this team is they deserve support because they keep going, no team wins every game, but they fight hard and deserve support. That’s what we’ll do again.

“We’ll give 100 per cent and whatever the outcome of the game we will come off knowing we’ve given everything.”

While there was pockets of frustration from the stands against Barnsley, Mowbray admits it remains business as usual around the club’s training base.

“Not in the senior training centre, the atmosphere is fine. The players are working hard,” he said.

“Last week was the hardest in terms of the most intensive running on the training pitch.

“The place is good, it’s a good place to come to work every day.”

Brentford’s policy of overseas recruitment has won widespread praise, with the Bees again in the play-off mix after an excellent run of form.

Attacker Ollie Watkins has 11 goals in attack, and Mowbray added: “Brentford have recruited well, it’s a system they’ve been using for a few years.

“Ultimately their goal would be get to the Premier League with their new stadium, in my opinion that’s what they’re striving to do.

“Teams like Brentford, they aren’t trying to develop players, they’re using statistics to try and recruit for the right money.

“We will never hear of the players who never come out of the B team that they’ve signed. We only hear of Benrahma, Canos, Maupay, sold for £20m to the Premier League.

“It’s working for them at the moment. If their aim is the Premier League then they have to strive to try and get there.

“They do it mainly based off statistics. It’s very numbers orientated.

“I think the best way is to use both. We use data but you have to use your eye as well.

“You have to cover the ground, go to Germany, France, Belgium, you have to have people on the ground to do the work, but we also have in-house scouts who are downloading games from around the world.

 “They don’t have an Academy of course, they have a B team. Is that a model that works for them? I’m assuming so. The main thing is the first-team is winning games and striving to get promotion.

“This club choose to have a Category One academy that they spend £3m on, trying to produce our own players, and Nyambe, Travis, David Raya who came as a boy of 16, it’s a different way of doing it.”