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Match Report


Posted Sat 28 Apr 12 at 17:01 PM


Brentford's home 2011/12 season ended with a 2-1 defeat against promotion-chasing Sheffield Wednesday.

Miguel Llera headed the winning goal for the visitors, who are chasing second place in npower League One, and the defeat ended Brentford's hopes of a top-six finish.

But that only tells half the story.

Two teams with all to play for produced a fantastic spectacle - with both needing to win they attacked with numbers seeking the opening goal and created openings.

Wednesday needed the three points to keep up the pressure on Sheffield United while Brentford knew only a win was good enough to keep their Play-Off hopes alive.

The visitors went ahead against the run of play through a Keith Treacy free kick but Clayton Donaldson equalised from the penalty spot.

Wednesday went back ahead soon after and held on for the win.

Brentford had the better of the first 35 minutes but there were chances at both ends.

Simon Moore saved a looping header from Llera inside the first minute and Treacy volleyed over for the visitors soon after.

Wednesday's defence looked ill-equipped to deal with Brentford when they attacked down the flanks and Donaldson, Jake Bidwell, Harry Forrester and Sam Saunders all had joy in the first half.

From one Donaldson burst, Bidwell set up Pim Balkestein but the defender pulled his shot horribly, however Forrester was able to set up Jonathan Douglas for an effort that went just wide.

Donaldson had a header saved before Karleigh Osborne missed a golden opportunity - the defender challenged for a Bidwell cross and then missed his kick from four yards when the ball dropped loose.

Donaldson shot wide after cutting inside and Shaleum Logan missed the target from range before Forrester tricked his way past three or four men and fired in a low shot that Stephen Bywater kept out.

Michail Antonio had a shot blocked for Wednesday before a Chris Lines pass set Gary Madine free but Logan got back to make a tackle and when Simon Moore kicked poorly, Treacy fired wide.

Brentford were starting to take the game by the scruff of the net and Wednesday were rattled - Bidwell fired a free kick straight at Bywater and Saunders shot wide before Douglas came within a whisker of scoring a goal to remember.

Toumani Diagouraga spread the play and Forrester cut inside and curled a cross for Douglas to run on to but the midfield man fired against the crossbar from inside the six-yard box.

And seconds later Wednesday made Brentford pay.

Antonio won a free kick on the right and Treacy put in a low ball that snuck past Moore and in at the near post.

Brentford tried to respond - Douglas had a shot blocked and Donaldson brought a low save out of Bywater after more good work by Diagouraga before Balkestein shot wide late on - but couldn't find the leveller.

It meant the hosts went in behind despite dominating for long periods.

The second half continued in similar fashion.

There were openings at both ends and Brentford could have been level before Donaldson's spot kick.

Saunders had a curling shot saved and Bywater did even better to keep out an effort from Donaldson when he let fly with his left foot from 18 yards.

Wednesday also went close early in the half when Moore kept out a flicked header from his own defender Osborne and then an effort with a knee from the same man soon after.

Logan cleared when Beevers headed a corner back across and Moore kept out a Lines header soon after.

The game's decisive moments came around the hour mark with two goals and two crucial decisions.

Brentford were awarded a penalty when Donaldson raced in behind on to a Diagouraga pass and was brought down by Beevers.

Donaldson slotted it home down the middle but the decision of referee Christopher Sarginson not to book Beevers - and therefore send him off - left many confused.

That was compounded moments after the re-start when Beevers hacked down Forrester and again escaped with a warning and when he was withdrawn moments later it was to stop him being sent off.

Wednesday made use of having a full compliment to score the winning goal when Treacy delivered a corner and Llera flicked a header in.

Despite precedent for players being booked for jumping in to celebrate with supporters, Llera was not booked - and therefore sent off - so Wednesday continued with 11.

And they needed them to repel the Brentford attacks.

The Bees threw everything forward to try and earn a share of the spoils.

Douglas headed a Saunders free kick back across the goal that no Brentford player could turn in and Saunders himself sent a free kick inches wide of the far post when any touch would probably have led to a goal.

Bywater made a superb save at the feet of Diagouraga after Saunders and Douglas had opened Wednesday up and from the resulting corner, Osborne lashed over from close range.

The visitors were dangerous on the break but Brentford had bodies in the way and Moore had little to do but claim crosses in to the box.

Wednesday thought they should have had a penalty when a Madine header hit the arm of Marcus Bean but nothing was given and Jermaine Johnson also had a shot blocked for the visitors.

Luke Norris had a late header blocked and Douglas missed the target with an acrobatic effort but Wednesday almost made it three but for a fine Bean tackle.

Brentford kept pushing but couldn't find a way through and Wednesday took the points.

Brentford:Moore; Logan (sub Norris 81 mins), Osborne, Dean, Balkestein (sub Bean 81 mins); Forrester (sub McGinn 75 mins), Douglas, Diagouraga, Bidwell; Saunders; Donaldson

Subs (not used): Thompson, Legge

Bookings: Douglas (33 mins) (11th of season)

Sheffield Wednesday:Bywater; Buxton, Batth, Llera, Beevers (sub Jones 65 mins); Antonio (sub Johnson 68 mins), Semedo, Lines, Treacy (sub O'Grady 83 mins); Ranger, Madine

Subs (not used): Weaver, Lowe

Bookings: Beevers (28 mins), Llera (58 mins), Buxton (90 mins)

Attendance:7,381 (1,800 away fans)

By Chris Wickham

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