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Match Report


Posted Sat 20 Dec 08 at 21:40 PM


Brentford extended their unbeaten run in League Two to five matches with a 1-1 draw at Gillingham in a game that saw both sides end with ten men.

Charlie MacDonald gave The Bees a first half lead, only for Simeon Jackson to level things up on the hour mark but the game exploded into life after that with Nathan Elder and Gills' captain Barry Fuller both sent off in the latter stages.

The first half hour of the match gave no indication of what was to come as it was a poor spectacle, lacking in excitement with neither team able to influence the game in the final third.

Chances in the early stages were few and far between - Fuller shot well wide for the home side and Karleigh Osborne blazed well over at the other end.

Jackson stung the palms of Ben Hamer after a nice turn and seconds later The Bees went ahead with one of the season's more bizarre goals.

Hamer's long kick found Elder in space on the right - after Garry Richards and Simon King failed to deal with it - he rounded Simon Royce but could only roll the ball into the centre from a tight angle, however the Gillingham defenders dithered again and MacDonald nipped in to slot home.

That was the striker's last contribution as he limped off soon after and the home side came flying back.

Alan Bennett headed an Albert Jarrett effort out from deep inside his own penalty area and Curtis Weston forced a save from Hamer with an acrobatic effort.

The Bees almost grabbed a second before the break when Dean Bowditch curled an effort over and had a few decent chances in an exciting opening to the second half.

Elder had an effort deflected wide by John Nutter after a great run by Ryan Dickson and then headed a Sam Wood corner off target but it was the hosts who held the upper hand.

Jackson shot over and Bennett blocked a Gary Mulligan shot before Richards dragged a shot which dribbled wide with Jackson unable to divert it in at full stretch.

Brentford looked like they had just about weathered the storm before the home side equalised - and with another unusual goal.

Nutter's free kick was flicked on by King and it cannoned into Jackson and flew past Hamer to level things up.

Bowditch shot over soon after before the game swung in Gillingham's direction with the dismissal of Elder.

Marvin Williams went down under the challenge of King and as he got caught under the defender's leg a melee ensued.

Once the situation had calmed Elder was dismissed for violent conduct while Fuller was shown a yellow card for his part in it.

That only served to further boost the home side and they pushed for a winner - Richards headed wide and Nicky Southall nodded over from the edge of the box.

Weston missed a golden opportunity when he headed wide form six yards after a great run by Andy Barcham and Hamer produced a brilliant full length save to push another Richards header round the post.

Referee Oliver Langford even the red card count with less than two minutes remaining when Fuller was shown a straight red card for a high tackle on Sam Wood and both sides pushed for a late winner.

Richards headedwide for the home side and Hamer produced another brilliant save to turn a Dennis Oli shot away as neither side could find the winner and the spoils were shared.

Gillingham: Royce; Fuller, Richards, King, Nutter; Jarrett (sub Southall 71 mins), Weston, Bentley, Barcham; Mulligan (sub Oli 81 mins), Jackson

Subs (not used): Julian, Mills, Lewis

Brentford: Hamer; Osborne, Phillips, Bennett, Dickson; Bowditch (sub Halls 73 mins), O'Connor, Bean, Wood; Elder, MacDonald (sub Williams 32 mins)

Subs (not used): Anderson, Johnson, Scannell

Attendance: 5,521

Written by Chris Wickham

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