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Match Report

 

Posted Wed 12 Mar 03 at 08:32 AM

BRENTFORD 1 COLCHESTER UNITED 1

Brentford looked set for the full three point haul against the side who were top of the Division's form tables, after a Mark McCammon goal had given them the lead at the break.

But a handball decision given against Lee Fieldwick, seven minutes from the end of normal time, gave Joe Keith the chance to level the scores from the penalty spot. The little bit of luck which the Bees have been searching for finally eluded them yet again. It wasn't a particularly confident performance from the Bees, but at the moment they just need a scrappy result to lift their spirits. Wally, with newcomer Mickael Antoine-Curier available having signed yesterday, was again without a number of regulars and, in the light of Saturday's hammering at Wycombe changed both personnel and the formation.

He reverted to a 4-3-3 line up with Andy Frampton partnering Scott Marshall in the middle with Matt Somner and Lee Fieldwick also at the back. This allowed skipper Michael Dobson to start the game in midfield, alongside Martin Rowlands and Kevin O`Connor, while the debutant joined Rowan Vine and Mark McCammon as a triple spearhead.


The Bees went close within 40 seconds when a penetrative cross from Rowlands screamed across the face of the goal with keeper Richard McKinney taking it at full stretch. But that was as exciting as it was going to get for the best part of the first half. Brentford forced the game's first corner in the 20th minute and from it Dobbo`s flicked header was cleared for another corner.

From it, the ball was cleared to the edge of the area whereupon Somner unleashed an absolute corker fully deserving of a goal, which was well saved by McKinney on the line. Rowlands showed his defensive qualities in the 28th minute when he was well placed to head clear a centre intended for Karl Duguid unmarked in the area. Then in the 36th minute came the breakthrough. Rowan Vine played a ball through for Antoine-Curier who ran on and powered in a shot which may well have entered the net itself. But Mark McCammon was equally well placed to make sure by chesting the ball home from two yards out.

Colchester came back quite strongly and twice before the break they tested Paul Smith who was equal to it on each occasion. Two minutes into the second half Rowlands laid the ball back for O`Connor who saw his resultant high lofted centre gathered at the second attempt by McKinney.

Chances went begging at both ends although Colchester enjoyed the majority of the possession. Kevin O`Connor was particularly well placed in the 72nd minute when clearing off the line from a Duguid header. Five minutes later and McCammon limped off to be replaced by Mark Peters. A further five minutes elapsed before, from United`s 6th corner the ball saw swung into the area and Fieldwick unwittingly nudged the ball away with his elbow under the watchful eye of the referee.

A penalty was awarded and duly dispatched by Keith. The Bees made one more substitution with Jay Smith replacing Vine who had become the Bees second booking (Rowlands was the first) for remonstrating with the ref about the penalty.

Brentford failed to lift themselves for a final effort to gain the three points while the visitors, buoyed by the equaliser, went close twice in the final stages which included the elusive five additional minutes which Graham Poll had forgotten last Saturday at Wycombe.

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