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Match Report

 

Posted Sun 17 Feb 08 at 19:09 PM

BRENTFORD 3 ACCRINGTON STANLEY 1

Brentford extended their unbeaten run to nine games with a 3-1 win over Accrington Stanley at a chilly Griffin Park.

Goals from Glenn Poole, Matthew Heywood and Alan Connell gave The Bees a win which, for long periods, was not as comfortable as it sounded.

The visitors were very competitive for the first hour and had equalised late in the first half through Ian Craney but Brentford's quality, particularly in the final third, meant they had more than enough to win in the end.

The Bees should have been ahead inside the first 50 seconds when Nathan Elder raced onto a clever Connell pass but he dithered in front of goal with only Kenny Arthur to beat and Aswad Thomas was able to make a fine recovery tackle.

After the home side's bright start the game opened up, James Harris shot narrowly wide and Andrew Todd smacked a shot against the cross bar after a nice Paul Mullin lay-off while Connell curled an effort over at the other end.

Both teams were creating openings, Shaun Whalley shot over when placed and Andrew Proctor lashed an effort wide before Ryan Dickson hit the post with a wickedly curling free kick and Whalley shot wide from 12 yards out after a good attacking run.

The Bees were beginning to get on top, Elder headed a Connell cross just wide and the latter forced Arthur into a low save before Poole opened the scoring 11 minutes before half time.

Ricky Shakes raced clear on the right hand side and whipped in a cross, Poole arrived and steered the ball into the bottom corner with his right foot for his 11th goal of the season.

But Brentford's lead didn't last long, Whalley skipped free on the left hand side and his pace took him clear, he picked out Craney with a cut back and the midfield man had no problem slotting home from six yards.

Dickson almost restored Brentford's lead with an effort from a free kick but seconds before the break The Bees did edge ahead again.

Robert Milsom, who was exceptional throughout in the centre of midfield, floated in a corner, Craig Stone flicked it on and Heywood scored his second Brentford goal nearly 18 months after his first with a far post header.

Stanley could have equalised before the break when Whalley raced free but Dickson's harrying and a fine smothering save by Ben Hamer prevented him pulling the Lancashire side level.

The visitors also had good chances early in the second half, Whalley hit the outside of the post with a snap shot from 25 yards, Proctor shot over and Mullin fired wide.

But Brentford began to take control again, Elder headed a corner narrowly wide and Poole fired over the top before Connell sealed the points just past the hour mark.

Elder and Poole combined to create space for Milsom who slipped a delightful ball through to Connell and the Bees' striker scored his ninth of the season with a lovely dink over the onrushing Arthur.

The Bees had the game just about won at that point and went looking for more goals, Stone had a shot blocked and then drilled a ball across the face of goal.

Elder headed over and Connell shot straight at Arthur as time ticked on and Craney almost pulled a goal back late on, forcing Heywood into a block inside his six yard box.

But Stanley offered very little after Connell's clinching goal and Brentford claimed a fully deserved second win in four days.

Brentford: Hamer; Pead (sub Osborne h/t), Heywood, Sankofa, Dickson; Shakes, Stone, Milsom, Poole; Connell, Elder (sub Reid 82 mins)

Subs (not used): Simon Brown, Montague, Charles

Bookings: Poole (82 mins)

Accrington Stanley: Arthur; Richardson, Thomas, Doughty, Edwards; Todd (sub Mannix 68 mins), Craney, Proctor, Harris (sub King 64 mins); Whalley, Mullin

Subs (not used): Dunbavin, Webb, Grant

Bookings: Harris (61 mins)

Attendance: 4,635 (121 away fans)

Written by Chris Wickham

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