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Match Report


Posted Mon 12 Apr 04 at 19:06 PM


Matt Harrold's 78th minute winner seals a nervy Easter Monday win for Brentford. Craig Fagan's goal for Colchester United sixty seconds later made for a nail-biting finish, with referee Ross playing five minutes of injury time to add to the drama.

Brentford fully deserved the win, not playing the most fluent football, but every Bee had the heart and desire to ensure The Bees came out on top. The first half was scrappy; the first serious attack from either side was Gareth Williams' shot in the twenty-second minute saved by Stuart Nelson, moments after the Bees 'keeper recovered from an accidental collision with a fellow team mate.

Brentford forced the breakthrough with a goal in first half injury time. Jay Tabb's header from eight yards beat Dean Gerken after he connected with Ben May's flick on from a long Sonko throw.

Colchester equalised eight minutes after the break. Greg Halford's long throw giving U's skipper Alan White the chance to hit a right-footed shot past a ruck of players. Undeterred, Brentford scored the second in the 59th minute; Hutchinson's header from a Stewart Talbot free-kick was met by Ben May, and his shot was deflected in by Sonko, for his second goal in as many games.

The third goal arrived in the 78th minute with a flash of good fortune. Wayne Brown's terrible back pass was yards wide of Dean Gerken, its intended target. The young goalkeeper was soon in a pickle when he realised Matt Harrold bore down on goal to stroke the ball home with ease.

If that was a signal to put the foot off the gas, it was a mistake as Colchester pulled one back a minute later. Ibrahima Sonko and Matt Somner collided on the edge of the box, giving Craig Fagan the chance to lob the out-rushing Stuart Nelson.

The remaining play was fraught but Brentford held firm for the three points, the only moment of worry being an injury-time goal line clearance by Ibrahima Sonko that the visitors appealed had gone over the line.

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