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Match Report


Posted Sat 12 Mar 11 at 16:52 PM


Leon Legge scored a last gasp winner as Brentford beat Charlton Athletic at The Valley for the first time in 85 years.

The Bees looked to have earned a London derby point in a goalless draw before Legge headed in at the death as The Bees beat Charlton at home for the first time since 1926.

The Bees probably had the better of it but Richard Lee made a few vital saves to keep the score line blank and allow Legge to win it.

The home side had the first sight of goal - Miguel Llera heading a corner wide - but Brentford started well.

They pushed Charlton back and forced mistakes.

Lewis Grabban had a low effort from 20 yards palmed wide by Ross Worner and from the resulting corner, Llera headed away almost on his own line with Legge flying in to head home.

A Nathan Byrne effort from 25 yards wasn't far wide soon after as The Bees ended the first 15 minutes the happier of the teams.

But Charlton responded - in Bradley Wright-Phillips and Frank Nouble they had two tall, powerful strikers and it was their ability to win long balls forward that forced Brentford on to the defensive.

Lee made a fine save from a Therry Racon near-post effort and Legge made an important tackle to stop Nouble going through after Karleigh Osborne lost possession on the edge of his penalty area - Scott Wagstaff fired the loose ball over the top.

Llera headed another Alan McCormack corner narrowly over soon after but the game evened out as it reached the half hour.

Sam Saunders headed a Byrne cross wide under pressure and then had a shot deflected over before Legge headed over from the resulting set piece.

Lee produced a good low save to keep out a left footed Wright-Phillips effort and Nouble should perhaps have done better after beating Legge and getting to the by-line but he dithered and was robbed.

Osborne headed wide for Brentford and Nouble lashed over for Charlton but chances were fewer and further between as half time approached.

It was The Bees who ended it stronger - Saunders slipped when taking a free kick from 20 yards and Worner saved easily but tested him with a curling effort soon after and Gary Alexander was just unable to head in a superb Robbie Neilson cross.

Brentford would have probably been happier at the break and they had the first sight of goal in the second half when Byrne curled a shot over a minute after the re-start.

But Charlton seemed to have had a stiff talking too at half time and flew out of the blocks for the second period.

Racon should have done better than curl over from 12 yards but the home side will feel they should have scored from a series of set pieces ten minutes into the second half.

Llera headed a McCormack free kick against the cross bar and when Carl Jenkinson put the ball back in his next effort was deflected wide.

Still Llera wasn't done though, when McCormack delivered a corner the central defender rose highest and headed down but Lee saved well and McCormack fired the re-bound wide.

The Bees were second best in the early stages of the second half and their cause wasn't helped when Sam Saunders limped off soon after the break to be replaced by Myles Weston.

But it didn't take them long to recover and by the hour mark they were in the ascendency.

They had strong claims for a penalty when an Adam Reed cross struck the arms of Jose Semedo but referee Mick Russell waved away the claims.

Alexander fired a shot across the face of goal soon after, Weston shot wide and Worner saved a low Marcus Bean effort as Brentford pressed.

Alexander had a near post shot blocked as Brentford continued to have the best chances and ended the stronger but there were few openings in the second half of the second half.

Worner had to push a Reed cross out from underneath his crossbar and from the resulting corner, Brentford won it.

Weston delivered a fantastic ball to the far post and Legge accepted the invitation to head in from six yards and win the game.

Charlton Athletic: Worner; Jenkinson (sub Solly 73 mins), Dailly (sub Fortune h/t), Llera, Fry; Wagstaff, Semedo, McCormack, Racon (sub Reid 78 mins); Wright-Phillips, Nouble

Subs (not used): Etheridge, Francis, Parrett, Eccleston

Bookings: Dailly (45 mins)

Brentford: Lee; Neilson, Legge, Osborne, Woodman; Byrne (sub Bean 62 mins), Diagouraga, Reed, Saunders (sub Weston 48 mins); Alexander, Grabban (sub Bignall 78 mins)

Subs (not used): Moore, Spillane, O'Connor, Simpson

Bookings: Weston (60 mins) (second of season)

Attendance: 14,985 (864 Bees fans)

By Chris Wickham

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