A Lloyd Owusu double and a strike from captain Ricky Newman helped Brentford overcome promotion rivals Barnsley at Griffin Park. The Bees surged into a two goal lead as they dominated the first half and Owusu sealed the win with a late penalty after the visitors had pulled a goal back.
Brentford made two changes from the team which won at Yeovil on Tuesday, they were able to welcome back Andrew Frampton after injury to replaced Marcus Gayle at left back while the match winner at Yeovil Alex Rhodes made his first start at Griffin Park for almost 15 months replacing Eddie Hutchinson.
Rhodes came within a whisker of opening the scoring after only six minutes when he raced onto an Owusu flick but he pulled his shot across the face of goal and Jay Tabb forced a save from Barnsley goalkeeper Nick Colgan moments later.
Brentford were dominant in the early stages and it was no surprise when they took the lead in the 12th minute. Isaiah Rankin rode a couple of challenges in midfield before laying the ball off to Owusu who fed Tabb, the Eire under-21 international floated the ball over a static Barnsley defence and Newman stole in to loft the ball over Colgan, who was caught out of position, and into the far corner.
That strike did not quench the Bees' thirst for goals and they continued to bomb forward. Owusu rolled a shot onto a post after picking the ball up from Rankin and barging his way past Matt Carbon and Paul Reid while Sam Tillen blasted a shot wide.
Brentford doubled their lead in the 22nd minute when Owusu got the goal he was threatening, racing onto a perfectly weighted through ball from Rhodes and lofting the ball over the advancing Colgan.
Barnsley had offered nothing in attack, Stephen McPhail's weak shot the best they could muster while Brentford continued to push on, Reid produced a great last ditch tackle to deny Owusu and the Ghanaian striker then headed wide from a Paul Brooker cross. Sam Sodje came within inches of adding a third just before the break when his header from a Tabb corner clipped the bar on the way over.
The visitors were much improved after the break but didn't seem able to get in behind the Brentford defence while the home side continued to press without creating any clear cut chances. The Tykes got a foothold in the game when they pulled one back in the 68th minute. Frampton sliced an attempted clearance over the head of Stuart Nelson and ex-Bees striker Tommy Wright leapt higher than Michael Turner to nod the ball into an empty net.
The goal increased the urgency from Barnsley but they lacked the quality to find an equaliser and Brentford confirmed their win when they were awarded a penalty with five minutes remaining. Substitute Darren Pratley's quick free kick caught the visitors' defence square and fellow replacement Calum Willock raced onto it, he went to shoot and ended up in a heap and referee Mr Miller penalised Neil Austin. Owusu stepped up in the stead of the injured Kevin O'Connor and blasted it high to the right of Nick Colgan.
The Bees could even have added a gloss to the score line when Willock headed straight at Colgan after good work by Brooker and Pratley while the latter shot wide late on but they had to settle for 3-1 and moving clear in second place in League One.
Brentford: Nelson; Tillen, Turner, Sodje, Frampton; Brooker, Newman, Tabb, Rhodes (sub Willock 81 mins); Owusu (sub Peters 81 mins), Rankin (sub Pratley 81 mins)
Subs (not used): Gayle, Bankole
Written by Chris Wickham