Brentford extended their unbeaten run to six games with a hard fought win over Yeovil Town at Griffin Park. Brentford had gained an early two goal advantage and also had an extra man for the last half hour but the visitors hit back and it took a last gasp goal from Michael Turner to give Brentford the points.
Brentford stuck with the same team which began the FA Cup tie at Oldham on Saturday, the fifth consecutive time The Bees have lined up with this eleven. Yeovil, on their first league visit to Griffin Park, included former Bees front man Matt Harrold.
The familiarity that Brentford have built up through the consistency of team selection was immediately obvious and the home side kept the ball well in the opening stages. They created their first half chance in the sixth minute when Jay Tabb's quick feet found him some space just outside the Yeovil box, the ball fell kindly for Lloyd Owusu who played it through to Paul Brooker, but he was muscled off the ball by Terry Skiverton.
Yeovil may have thought the danger was averted but from the resulting throw in they handed Brentford the lead. Andrew Frampton received the ball on the left and swung in a cross, the visitors' keeper, Chris Weale, came out to gather but Nathan Jones stooped and diverted the ball past him and into the net.
The goal only served to increase Brentford's confidence; they grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck and created a number of good chances. The first of them came in the tenth minute when Tabb came inside and picked the ball up before slipping a perfectly weighted ball through to Dudley Campbell, but he pulled his shot across the face of goal.
Campbell had another effort two minutes late when he intercepted a poor pass by Efe Sodje and let fly from 25 yards, but Weale palmed it around the post. Brooker's corner wasn't cleared by the Yeovil defence and Tabb headed back into the danger area. The visitors stood and watched, appealing for offside, as Tabb followed his header in and slotted it under Weale.
Tabby takes the plaudits
With a 2-0 advantage Brentford began to spread the ball beautifully, making full use of the blemish free playing surface but Yeovil improved after their slow start and created opportunities of their own. A cross by Kevin Amankwaah almost lead to a header for Harrold but Stuart Nelson punched it clear and Darren Pratley blocked the second effort. Harrold then created space for Paul Terry whose shot was easily dealt with by Nelson.
The Bees keeper had little trouble dealing with a Chris Cohen free kick just after the half hour but had to rely on Tabb to clear off the line when Jones headed a Lee Johnson corner towards the far post. From the resulting corner Brentford should have had a third goal on the break. Campbell picked it up inside his own half and set off on a mazy run which took him deep into Yeovil territory, he played the ball through to Brooker who was one on one with Weale but the Glovers custodian smothered at his feet.
Man of the Match DJ Campbell
Yeovil got a foothold in the game in the 38th minute when a free kick was rolled square to Johnson; his shot broke to Harrold ten yards out who slotted it past Nelson. Brentford went straight up the other end and tried to restore their two goal cushion, Tabb's corner was flicked on by Owusu but it was just too high for Sam Sodje and Frampton. Unfortunately for Frampton he injured himself trying to reach the ball and was replaced by Sam Tillen minutes later. Seconds before the interval Pratley curled in a free kick from 30 yards which Weale gathered comfortably.
Yeovil created the first chance of the second period when Kevin Gall latched onto a long ball but Nelson dived to his right to save the low shot. Michael Turner forced Weale into a save at the other end with a flicked header from a Brooker free kick, Campbell volleyed a Tabb cross over at the near post and Yeovil had a penalty appeal when Harrold's cross appeared to hit a Brentford defender's arm but referee D'Urso waved play on.
Brentford had the best chance of a breathless opening to the second half when Campbell's lay off found Brooker, he played the behind the Yeovil defence for Owusu to run onto but his shot was saved by Weale. Kevin O'Connor curled a free kick narrowly over just before the hour mark and minutes later Brentford had a man advantage to go with their goal advantage.
The Bees kept the ball in midfield while they searched for the opening, after six or seven passes O'Connor played a ball into space for Campbell, who had beaten the offside trap, to run on to. He was brought crashing down by Weale and Mr D'Urso had little alternative but to dismiss him. Yeovil immediately brought on their substitute keeper Steve Collis and his first action was to save a header from Campbell after a Tabb free kick.
Although the home side had a man advantage it wasn't long until they lost their goal advantage, Johnson smashing home an equaliser from a free kick 20 yards out in the 68th minute. Brentford could have got their noses back in front immediately when Owusu headed the ball through to Brooker, but he pulled his shot across goal. He was replaced a minute later by Isaiah Rankin.
Paul Brooker denied by the keeper
The Bees substitute created a chance minutes after his introduction when he wriggled free inside the area, his cross cum shot eluded everybody on its way wide. Brentford came even closer with 15 minutes remaining; Tabb's free kick tipped onto the crossbar and over by Collis.
Brentford kept pushing forward, trying to turn one point into three but were almost hit on the break when Gall went clear, but his shot from the edge of the box was saved by Nelson, substitute Pablo Bastianini shot wide and from one incisive counter attack Nelson had to be at his best to stop another Gall pile driver.
Brentford had plenty of possession but the ball wouldn't quite drop for them inside the danger zone as Yeovil got bodies in the way but when they did finally get a chance with a minute to play, they emphatically made it count. O'Connor spread the ball from right to left where Tillen was waiting, he found Turner in yards of space on the far side of the area, who controlled it on his chest and drilled it left footed past Collis and into the far corner to win the game and send Griffin Park into raptures.
Michael Turner reels away having scored the winner
Brentford: Nelson; O'Connor, Turner, Sodje, Frampton (sub Tillen 42 mins); Brooker (sub Rankin 70 mins), Newman, Pratley, Tabb; Owusu, Campbell (sub Hutchinson 89 mins)
Subs (not used): Gayle, Bankole
Written by Chris Wickham