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Match Report


Posted Sat 18 Sep 10 at 17:41 PM


Brentford endured another frustrating afternoon as for the second week in a row they dominated a game but failed to collect all three points.

Hartlepool United left Griffin Park with a share of the spoils in a 0-0 draw, a week after Bristol Rovers had similarly denied The Bees.

The visitors defended very well for most of the game and although Brentford dominated possession they did not have as many clear cut chances as against Rovers.

But the home side will know they had enough clear sights of goal to have breached the Hartlepool rearguard.

Hartlepool came out of the blocks slightly the quicker and had the ball deep in Brentford territory for the much of the first ten minutes.

Karleigh Osborne made an important block from a fierce Paul Murray shot but clear goal scoring chances were few, even with the visitors' pressure.

Michael Spillane flicked a header wide and goalkeeper Jake Kean held on well to a low Charlie MacDonald cross-cum-shot.

At the other end, Spillane made a vital headed clearance from an Andy Monkhouse flicked header and when a long throw was half cleared, Osborne managed to divert Fabian Yantoro's shot onto the post and keep the score line blank.

By the midway point of the half, Hartlepool were being pushed back, and Brentford were in the ascendency.

A low Nicky Adams cross just eluded MacDonald but the striker did get a sight of goal when he was picked out by a fine Toumani Diagouraga pass, the Bees' hit man's low shot was well saved low to his left by Kean and Gary Alexander couldn't turn in the loose ball.

Hamer saved well from a low Monkhouse shot on a rare Hartlepool attack while Alexander headed wide at the other end.

The Bees thought they had their goal just past the half hour when Spillane picked up a Diagouraga pass in the inside left channel, he got past Sam Collins and fired in a low shot that beat Kean but Gary Liddle acrobatically cleared off the line.

It seemed a matter of time until a goal would come - Spillane had a header saved, Alexander nodded over and then forced Kean into a superb save from another firm header.

Osborne headed wide in the dying seconds of the half and The Bees went to the break with a feeling of deja vu - for the second week in a row they were completely dominant but unable to get their noses in front.

The game continued in a similar vein after the break, although the visitors were probably a little more ambitious in the early stages of the second period.

MacDonald couldn't turn home an Adams pass at full stretch and then volleyed over from a tight angle.

Hartlepool were defending better, giving less space in the final third and limiting Brentford's chances, but there was little doubt the home side were on top.

The visitors did cause a scare, however, when a curling Antony Sweeney shot flew just over.

Myles Weston headed a Sam Saunders cross wide and when the compliment was returned, the right sided player also missed the target with his header.

Hartlepool looked as if they may snatch it when Sweeney burst from deep onto a Denis Behan ball but Ben Hamer saved low.

Nicky Forster almost gave The Bees the win at the death with a volley that flew inches wide and Saunders went even closer with a free kick that curled narrowly past the post.

But for the second week in a row, it wasn't to be for The Bees.

Brentford: Hamer; Spillane, Osborne, Balkestein, Woodman; Adams (sub Saunders 65 mins), O'Connor, Diagouraga, Weston; MacDonald, Alexander (sub Forster 78 mins)

Subs (not used): Lee, McCracken, Legge, Bean, Wood

Hartlepool United: Kean; Austin, Liddle, Collins, Horwood; Sweeney, Murray; Larkin, Yantoro, Monkhouse; Humphreys (sub Behan 78 mins)

Subs (not used): McSweeney, Behan, Boyd, Haslam, Mackay, Hartley, Mooney

Bookings: Haslam (90 mins)

Attendance: 4,710 (150 away fans)

By Chris Wickham

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