Brentford 1 - Notts County 1
Robbie Simpson's late penalty miss allowed nine man Notts County to leave Griffin Park with an ill-earned point on Tuesday.
County had been reduced to ten men in the 24th minute when Jon Harley was sent off for a foul on Marcus Bean - his second bookable offence.
This did not stop the visitors from taking the lead when stop-gap centre back Robbie Neilson was caught dreadfully in possession and Craig Westcarr forced the ball under Richard Lee before rolling it into the empty net. It was a gift goal but Brentford had repeatedly been far too casual with the ball and failed to build any real pressure upon their under strength opponents.
After the break things didn't significantly improve and Paul Ince's troop of journeyman cheats continually ran down the clock with a variety of timewasting and play-acting, all in the face of overwhelmed referee Williamson.
Brentford eventually managed a slightly surreal equaliser in the 73rd minute, Karleigh Osborne heading home from a free-kick with Stuart Nelson stranded in no man's land and the County defence standing and watching.
With five minutes of stoppage time remaining, Ince's malcontents were reduced to nine when Mike Edwards was sent packing - again for a second yellow card offence.
It was in the very last minute that Simpson was tripped in the box before seeing the woodwork deny Brentford three home points. In fairness to Simmo he did have to wait an age to take the penalty while perennial clogger Neil Bishop refused to move out of the penalty area. Again the referee was limp in his control of the situation.
In truth Brentford didn't create do enough to take the game to the opposition, and whilst the three points would have been just desserts for County's 'sportsmanship' it would have also slightly flattered the Bees.
There just didn't seem to be enough urgency on the pitch until the last few minutes - epitomised by Myles Weston trudging slowly off when substituted as the clock ran down. Also too many players were slack with their passes - Craig Woodman was a major culprit here - whilst Charlie Macdonald was very quiet for the second match in a row.
There are definately some green shoots of recovery at Griffin Park currently but also some significant things for caretaker boss Forster to work on for the rest of the season.
Bees - Lee, Woodman, Kev, Neilson, KO, Saunders, Weston (Byrne 63), Dave, Bean, Mac (Bignall 87), Alexander (Simmo 63)
Unused Bees - Moore, Pim, Legge, Grabban
With thanks to
beesotted for their match report
March 3, 2011