BRENTFORD 0 WBA 1

Bill Hagerty reflects on a game of might-have-beens where three points were gone with the wind

 

If just one, but preferably two, of a cluster of first-half chances had been accepted… If West Brom hadn’t chosen this football tutorial to demonstrate their first class honours degree in time-wasting… If the fourth official had concentrated more on his stopwatch than the hot tea and buns, or whatever was distracting him, and awarded ten instead of a paltry four minutes’ extra time…well, it might all have been different.

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SHEFFIELD UNITED 2 BRENTFORD 0

Stewart Purvis was back in Sheffield for another Tuesday evening that fell flat.

On a windy wasteful night in South Yorkshire Brentford missed an opportunity to win away for the second time in four days and close the gap on the Championship play-off zone. After a frustrating game against one of the front runners for promotion, the only good news was that the gap remained at six points for at least 24 hours.

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MIDDLESBROUGH 1 BRENTFORD 2

Stewart Purvis was one of the lucky Bees fans to witness a historic win.

This was something very special. Brentford earned their second away victory of this season and their first at Middlesbrough since 1938 by keeping their heads after an early setback and playing better football than a ‘big club’. They even survived more than seven minutes of added time with a fourth choice goal keeper. Now in the top half of the table, six points off the top six, it seems a play-off place is not as impossible as we thought.

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BRENTFORD 3 QPR 0

Bill Hagerty admires Brentford’s intelligent spanking of Rangers in fiercely-fought local derby

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SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAY 2 BRENTFORD 0

Stewart Purvis sees the Bees fail again on the road.

Maybe it was over before it began. Just as the Bees warmed up at Hillsborough with every player back in their right position after Canos’s matches as an emergency wing back, a key man was withdrawn. Kamo Mokotjo told the coaches he felt something wrong in his calf and achilles so wasn’t risked. Josh McEachran took his place in the starting line-up. The midfield was immediately minus a tackler and goal scorer. It turned out to be no Kamo, no chance. 

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BRENTFORD 5 HULL CITY 1

Bill Hagerty marvels as Benrahma puts a tiger in Bees’ tank to sink a downcast Hull at Griffin Park

 

Bang the drums, wave the flags, to celebrate the birth of a superstar. Said Benrahma, the Algerian-born winger who has indelibly stamped his presence on the shifting sands of Brentford’s season, on Saturday burst to fully-fledged celebrity with a sparkling hat-trick that destroyed the recently-impressive Yorkshire side.

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SWANSEA CITY 4 BRENTFORD 1

Donald Kerr was among the disappointed Bees fans in the Liberty Stadium.

 

It’s difficult to know where to start with a report on our defeat in Swansea. Given that it was on BBC Wales, there can be few fans that weren’t either there at the Liberty Stadium or didn’t watch on television the grasp we had on the game weaken and disappear within minutes of the start of the second half. It was not merely that our composure and control, so evident for 45 minutes, seemed to evaporate, but that we started to make so many uncharacteristic mistakes, and make a poor situation much worse. Everything we did well in the first half we seemed to forget the minute we gave away the disastrous second goal, and, of course, the red card ended any hope there was that we might get back in the game.

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BRENTFORD 1 ASTON VILLA 0

Bill Hagerty sees Bees score a last-gasp winner to ruin Dean Smith’s return to Griffin Park.

 

How to describe never-say-die Brentford’s performance as they dumped play-off contenders Aston Villa on their optimistic back-sides: sensational, astounding, thrilling, breathtaking, magnificent, incredible? No, it was better than that.

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NOTTINGHAM FOREST 2 BRENTFORD 1

Stewart Purvis sees Brentford’s unbeaten run of ten games come to an end.

Yet another early defensive slip-up cost the Bees a game they could have at least drawn. Clear winners in the stats in every category but goals, Brentford started too casually and left the comeback too late.
Nottingham Forest are big into ‘70s and ‘80s memorabilia: a Brian Clough statue, a Clough highlights video before the game, signage round the ground recording the trophies they won until these came to a dead halt in the early 1990s. Now they even have memorabilia management, ‘Forest Legends Are Back’ red and white scarves are on sale to mark the return of Martin O’Neill and Roy Keane.. One of the advantages of Keane’s return, goodness knows there must also be disadvantages, is a well organised defence that anticipated every Brentford move until Sergi Canós came on.

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BRENTFORD 3 BARNET 1

Bill Hagerty sees Brentford dismiss those other Bees to reach the fifth round in another exciting FA Cup-tie  

 

A lesson learned the previous Saturday, when Brentford conceded two goals inside seven minutes before regrouping to thrash Blackburn Rovers, is fundamental: get your retaliation in first. When rugby legend Willie John McBride came up with the phrase he was advocating early physical response against a ferocious South African side, but just as effective was the Bees’ more cultivated interpretation: score two goals before they do.

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