Brentford fans were left scratching their heads (again) and searching for yet more excuses as to how another dominant Bees performance was not rewarded with a victory – but it was a case of the same old, same old – Dean Smith’s side simply weren’t ruthless enough in front of goal despite creating ‘umpteen chances, then undid all the good work with a careless error.
You could insert the opening paragraph from pretty much any Beesotted match report from this season here – ‘the Bees opened brightly’, ‘some lovely one-touch-flowing football’, ‘had the opposition on the ropes almost from the first whistle’, ‘if it wasn’t for a finger-tipped save from…’ – and despite taking a well deserved lead after a brilliant move that was finished off by our man of the match, Josh Clarke, it was clear that a second or third goal was going to be required to finish the job off. A goal that never came. Deja vu is becoming tiresome now.
In the first half Brentford oozed class – again, the football served up was excellent and the positives included Bjelland having his best game for the club alongside Egan, Clarke’s tireless running and Makotjo and Woods working well together in the middle of the park – however, a miss by Watkins and a penalty appeal that was waved away by the referee had us all thinking ‘is that going to come back and haunt us?’ Yes, would be the answer to that.
Reading upped their game after the break, while Neil Maupay ran his little legs off without being given the right service from midfield – Woods, for all his brilliance and trickery in keeping possession and always being available, lacks the ability to deliver the killer pass too often – and the delivery of Jozefzoon and Watkins was a lacking at crucial times. Florian also missed a one-on-one that should have wrapped the win up before Reading produced a sting in the tail – Maupay was left visibly angry that a pass to him may have been a better option.
Some may say that Reading’s penalty was a weak one to concede, after watching the replay several time now, you have to ask how and why we conceded that – and with the game levelled, there was a genuine concern that The Royals would go on and win the clash. They shaved the top of the cross bar with a long range effort, but thankfully did no more damage to Brentford’s already wobbly start to the season.
As I said at the start… and as Brentford fans said on the Beesotted Pride of West London post-match podcast (click link above), yet more head-scratching and yet more excuses were induced from a game that should have been wrapped up at half time.
We still have to take comfort in the confident, attacking play, and we have to resssure ourselves that, if we carry on playing like we are, the tide will turn – but nothing is a given at this level, and that first vital win may still be a few weeks away unless we get clinical in front of goal. But that’s clearly easier said than done at the moment.
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