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Match Report


Posted Sat 19 Nov 05 at 18:01 PM


A Lloyd Owusu goal two minutes from time earned Brentford a point against Oldham Athletic at Griffin Park, and completed a fantastic recovery after they had trailed 3-1 in the 23rd minute. In an absorbing 17 minute first half spell Chris Porter scored a hat trick of headers and Brentford scored twice, before Oldham were pegged back late in the game.

Brentford stuck with the same team which won at Hartlepool last week, with Owusu and Campbell paired together up front. Ryan Peters returned from injury and took a place among the substitutes, replacing Michael Dobson.

The game started quietly with neither team creating much but the game sprung to life following a Paul Brooker shot in the 9th minute. A minute later a flicked header from Michael Turner was cleared by Daniel Hall from under his own crossbar, Sam Sodje rose to win the high ball and Owusu diverted a header narrowly over the bar. A minute later Brentford were behind.

Richard Wellens created space on the left and curled in a cross, Porter stole in as the Brentford defence watched and he gave Stuart Nelson no chance with a fine header. Brentford didn't let the set back worry them and found an equaliser within six minutes. Dudley Campbell won a free kick 22 yards from goal and Kevin O'Connor fired it into the defensive wall, Darren Pratley moved onto the looping ball and drilled it low past Chris Day from 20 yards out for his first goal at Griffin Park.

The equaliser galvanised Brentford and with Pratley and Ricky Newman bossing midfield they dominated possession, however Oldham hit back and scored two goals in quick succession. In the 22nd minute Andy Liddell reacted quickest as Brentford dithered in clearing and knocked the ball across where Porter was waiting to beat Nelson with ease. It got worse a minute later when Paul Warne found himself in yards of space on the right flank, he cut inside and lofted the ball in where Porter headed past Nelson to give Oldham a 3-1 lead.

Brentford could scarcely believe it but did not allow the deficit to affect them; Newman had a shot deflected wide and in the 28th minute Brentford were back in it. Andrew Frampton's long throw was flicked on by Sodje; Pratley knocked it to Dudley Campbell who shot across Day and into the far corner.

After five goals in a 17 minute spell the game could not continue at such break neck speed but Brentford still continued to create openings. Brooker intelligently played a free kick square to Newman, who had a shot deflected wide and four minutes before the break Pratley seemed to have brought Brentford level. Kevin O'Connor and Brooker created a chance for Newman to cross, Pratley met it on the run at the near post and fired it low towards the near post but Day turned it away at full stretch.

Oldham found themselves down to ten men for ten minutes at the end of the first half when hat trick hero Porter went off with a head injury; he re-appeared for the second half but lasted only six minutes before being replaced by Chris Hall. At the same time Sam Tillen replaced Frampton for Brentford. Tillen almost had an immediate impact when his cross reached O'Connor at the far post; his low shot was saved by Day. Day then saved again from a Sodje header.

Owusu had a golden chance to equalise in the 61st minute when he raced onto a Pratley through ball, he lofted his shot over Day but it also cleared the bar. Turner flicked a header wide and Day smothered at the feet of Campbell as Brentford continued to press.

Just when it seemed like a goal wasn't going to come Tillen was brought crashing down on the left wing by Warne. Pratley curled a free kick into the six yard bow, and Owusu rose completely unmarked to head past Day and earn Brentford a point, the minimum they deserved.

They could have won it in stoppage time when substitute Scott P. Fitzgerald seemed to have been brought crashing down inside the penalty area, but referee Armstrong waved play on and the game finished level.

Brentford: Nelson; O'Connor, Turner, Sodje, Frampton (sub Tillen 51 mins); Brooker (sub Peters 64 mins), Newman, Pratley, Tabb; Owusu, Campbell (sub Scott P. Fitzgerald 86 mins)

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