|Brentford 2 v 0 Ipswich Town|
Wednesday, 10th April 2019 Kick-off 19:45
Brentford 2-0 Ipswich Town - Match Report
Wednesday, 10th Apr 2019 21:43
First-half goals from Neal Maupay and Ollie Watkins saw Brentford to a comfortable victory over the Blues at Griffin Park. Maupay slammed home the opener in the 20th minute, moments after Collin Quaner had hit the post for the Blues when through on goal, then Watkins netted the second eight minutes later after the Bees made the most of a Flynn Downes error.
Downes, Trevoh Chalobah, Toto Nsiala and James Bree returned to the Town starting line-up with Cole Skuse, James Collins and Gwion Edwards all dropping out of the 18.
Downes came into the midfield for Skuse, while Nsiala took over from Collins at the centre of the defence. Bree was at right-back with Josh Emmanuel dropping to the bench.
Chalobah was back in midfield, while Dozzell was in a role on the right similar to the one Alan Judge, facing his old club, plays on the left, with Quaner again the central striker.
Simon Dawkins and Tristan Nydam were among the subs but there was no place in the 18 for Will Keane, the striker still considered not ready for his return from his hamstring injury.
Neither side made much headway in the opening 10 minutes, although the home team saw most of the ball, with the only serious action a nasty looking late and high challenge by Bees skipper Romaine Sawyers on Teddy Bishop which surprisingly didn’t see referee Andy Davies show his first card of the evening.
On 11 Maupay tried to play through Watkins but the ball was overhit and Bartosz Bialkowski claimed. Four minutes later, Bree tried similar at the other end and his pass was also too strong for Judge.
Town began to see more of the ball and in the 19th minute Bishop was sent away down the left by Judge but his cross towards Quaner was cut out.
A minute later, the Blues should have gone in front. Dozzell sent Quaner through on goal, the on-loan Huddersfield man took the ball wide of keeper Luke Daniels and chipped goalwards but his effort stuck the post and bounced out.
Town were immediately made the rue the miss with Brentford breaking up the other end and taking the lead, Maupay slamming home from eight yards after his initial attempt had been blocked by Bree following good work from Said Benrahma.
Having taken the lead the Bees had their tails up and soon after the goal Benrahma hit a powerful strike from 25 yards but which was straight at Bialkowski.
Moments later, Watkins was found on the right of the box and his low shot was well-saved by Town’s Polish international keeper.
In the 28th minute Brentford made it 2-0. Downes slipped midway inside the Blues half - hardly the first Town player to lose his footing - and gifted possession to Sawyers, who fed Maupay. The earlier scorer played to Benrahma to his left and the Algerian passed across the six-yard box to Watkins, who was able to tap home with comfort at the far post.
Dozzell curled a shot to keeper Daniels on 33 but the home side continued to look the greater threat with Maupay eventually getting crowded out on the edge of the box.
The Frenchman, whose movement was giving the Town backline all sorts of problems, almost made it 3-0 on 38 when fed in on the edge of the box by Benrahma but he shot wide.
The Blues were fortunate to reach the break without conceding a further goal with Maupay and Benrhama in particular having caused no end of problems throughout the half.
The first Brentford goal was a microcosm of Town’s season, the Blues having created an excellent chance which Quaner had been unable to take before Brentford were immediately allowed to take their first chance at the other end.
The Bees’ second goal came from the sort of slip which has happened too often throughout the campaign.
Aside from Quaner’s chance the Blues had failed to create anything with the home side’s backline solid.
Five minutes after the restart, the Bees again went close to their third, Benrahma’s looping shot scuffed the outside of the angle of post and bar from Sawyers’s ball in from the right. Moments later, the Algerian scraped another effort wide.
Nsiala was booked for an awkward-looking challenge on Maupay on halfway on 54 which led to a brief bout of handbags before order was restored.
Benrahma shot wide again on 57 after a strong run from Rico Henry, then at the other end Judge, unable to influence the game as much as he has other recent matches, shot well over from an angle on the right.
Match Gallery: 5 photos
Kayden Jackson took over from Quaner in the 61st minute with the Blues showing little sign of getting back into the game. A minute later, Maupay went just wide for the Bees.
Nydam replaced Bishop in the 66th minute, the 19-year-old’s first appearance under Paul Lambert.
The excellent Benrahma and Maupay were replaced by Sergei Canos and Emiliano Marcondes in the 72nd minute with Bees still comfortably retaining their two-goal lead.
Mads Bech Sorensen was booked for a foul on Jackson, then in the 75th minute Judge forced Daniels to tip over with a curling, looping effort from distance on the left. The keeper subsequently just about held on to Dozzell’s corner from the right. Five minutes later, Idris El Mizouni replaced Chalobah in the Town midfield.
Judge should have netted his first goal for the Blues against his old club in the 81st minute when sent away on the edge of the box to the right after El Mizouni had won the ball from Henry but hit his shot the wrong side of the far post.
The Bees continued to look the more likely scorers of the game’s third goal until referee Davies’s whistle ended a well-deserved victory which was never in any doubt once their two first-half goals had been scored.
The West Londoners, who were well in control from virtually start to end, might well have been further in front at the break and had chances to add to their lead in the second, while Daniels in the Brentford goal was only really troubled by Judge’s effort he tipped over and the former Bee’s shot wide later in the half.
The Blues, whose large support kept singing in the manner which has become so familiar in recent weeks, passed the ball around at times but without ever dominating Brentford and rarely threatening their goal.
With Reading eventually drawing 2-2 with Norwich, Hull defeating Wigan 2-1 and Millwall drawing 0-0 with QPR, Town’s relegation to the third tier for the first time in 62 years is still to be confirmed, but remains just a matter of time.
The Blues, who are now 14 points plus goal difference from safety with five left to play, host Birmingham City, who drew 1-1 with Sheffield United at St Andrew’s, on Saturday.
Brentford: Daniels, Odubajo, Henry, Maupay (Marcondes 72), Watkins (Forss 87), Dasilva, Sawyers (c), Benrahma (Canos 72), Jeanvier, Konsa, Bech Sorensen. Unused: Balcombe, Macleod, Dalsgaard, Oksanen.
Town: Bialkowski, Bree, Chambers (c), Nsiala, Kenlock, Chalobah (El Mizouni 80), Downes, Bishop (Nydam 66), Dozzell, Judge, Quaner (Jackson 61). Unused: Gerken, Knudsen, Emmanuel, Dawkins. Referee: Andy Davies (Hampshire).
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