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Match Report


Posted Tue 29 Mar 11 at 21:38 PM


Sam Saunders marked his return from injury with a superb goal as Brentford completed a League One double over Sheffield Wednesday.

The Bees took the lead early on through Michael Spillane and Jeffrey Schlupp restored the lead soon after Wednesday equalised.

Brentford fully merited their win and Saunders sealed the points with eight minutes remaining.

Neither side were comfortable defensively in the opening stages - there were three goals inside the opening 20 minutes, and there could have been more.

The Bees were ahead inside three minutes from their first corner.

Nathan Byrne, who delivered good dead balls all evening, floated in a corner and Spillane rose unchallenged to head past Richard O'Donnell from eight yards.

The hosts responded well after a tricky first five minutes where they barely had the ball.

Paul Heffernan headed over and Rob Jones saw an effort deflected over the top.

But from the resulting corner, delivered superbly by Gary Teale, Jones beat Trevor Carson to it to head The Owls level.

The game continued to flow from end to end but Brentford soon regained the upper hand and six minutes after being pegged back, they were ahead again.

After a nice piece of interplay, Marcus Bean went down on the edge of the penalty area - the Wednesday players stopped expecting a whistle but referee Andy Haines waved play on, Lewis Grabban reacted quickest and darted in to the box, he lifted the ball to the far post over O'Donnell and Schlupp headed in from close range.

Pim Balkestein headed a corner over soon after as Brentford continued to hold the upper hand..

Danny Batth had a weak header saved and Darren Potter curled a free kick over the top but the game was largely being played in the Wednesday half.

As half time approached there were fewer chances - Brentford were dominating in midfield and comfortable in possession, Wednesday were struggling to make any impression.

The Bees went close soon after the break - Nicholas Bignall, who had replaced Schlupp at half time, beat Lewis Buxton to a loose ball and picked out Grabban, he twisted and turned in the box and got off a shot that Danny Batth cleared off the line.

Wednesday, in need of points to climb away from the lower reaches of League One, started to apply the pressure, without really looking like scoring.

Gary Madine saw as shot blocked by Craig Woodman and then blasted wide before Isaiah Osbourne missed the target from the edge of the penalty area.

Jermaine Johnson shot wide for the hosts and Spillane missed the target with a free kick at the other end as both teams pushed forward.

Spillane went close again soon after when Wednesday failed to deal with a Byrne corner but the right back had a header and then a shot blocked before Grabban shot wide soon after.

Wednesday were pushing more bodies forward as they searched an equaliser.

Substitute Johnson was proving to be their main danger, he shot wide and then forced Karleigh Osborne into a fine block from a fierce shot before Madine pulled an effort wide.

Johnson shot narrowly wide after skipping past Spillane but a few minutes later the game was over.

Byrne was brought crashing down by Batth after a superb jinking run and referee Haines awarded a free kick 25 yards out - Saunders stepped up and curled the ball into the bottom corner past a stranded O'Donnell.

The prompted an exodus of home fans and the Wednesday players did not have much left to give either.

Madine forced a save from Carson but Owain Tudur Jones went close with a shot at the other end that was deflected wide after a nice run.

Osbourne shot wide for the hosts but they offered almost nothing and Brentford were worthy winners.

Sheffield Wednesday: O'Donnell; Buxton, Batth, Jones (sub Otsemobor 25 mins), Spurr; Potter (sub Johnson 56 mins), O'Brien, Osbourne, Teale; Heffernan (sub C. Morrison 56 mins), Madine

Subs (not used): Nicholls, M. Morrison, Miller, Sedgwick

Bookings: Osbourne (85 mins)

Brentford: Carson; Spillane, Osborne, Balkestein, Woodman; Byrne, Bean, O'Connor (sub Tudur Jones 69 mins), Wood (sub Saunders 63 mins); Grabban, Schlupp (sub Bignall h/t)

Subs (not used): Moore, Wright, Legge, Weston

Attendance: 14,797

By Chris Wickham

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