If Brentford fans thought that a ‘nice little cup run’ could take the edge off a poor start to the season, or be a useful distraction to kick-start some more positive results, Tuesday night’s League Cup exit was certainly not what the doctor ordered.
Dean Smith made big changes to the starting line-up from Saturday’s draw with Reading, understandably in some cases, however, Norwich were stronger in almost every department from the start to the finish and any benefits of fielding some of the B Team talent was hard to see as the game unfolded. There was a poor crowd at Griffin Park, and it was a poor performance by the boys in red and white.
Chris Mepham, making his first team debut, had a harsh introduction when he was adjudged to have clipped a Norwich forward in the area after just ten minutes, allowing Mario Vrancic to coolly convert past Luke Daniels, and although the Bees tried to knock it around and beavered away to get back in the game, Norwich looked superior in the midfield without Ryan Woods and Romaine Sawyers.
Yohan Barbet will not be alone in wanting to forget his penalty effort early in the second half, after Mokotjo had been felled, the Frenchman smashing the ball high into the upper deck of the Brook Road stand and almost decapitating a copper – if one moment summed up the season so far, that was it. Why isn’t Neil Maupay taking pens?
After that let-off Nowich stepped it up a gear – Vrancic curled a lovely free kick around the Bees’ wall to make it two, then Murphy chipped the ball over the onrushing Daniels to make it three.
On a night that ended in boos from some sections of the home crowd (as you will hear at the start of the post match podcast and video by clicking the links above), Justin Shaibu(oooo) can hold his head up high after coming on as sub, the young Dane hitting the post after an excellent run, and his direct running and energy was in stark contrast to one or two of his team mates who fell below the levels that are expected.
The next three matches before the international break now become even more critical – Bolton Wanderers away this Saturday, Derby County at home next Tuesday, followed by a long trip to Middlesbrough.
Perhaps, if the players want to prove that those suggesting Dean Smith may be becoming a problem are wrong, the ones on the pitch need to prove otherwise.
MORE RECENT CONTENT
MOST READ CONTENT
Beesotted are getting into he groove with their second radio show on Love Sport Radio broadcast this week. Billy TheBee Grant, Dave Lane and Edwood the Headwood join Aaron Paul to hit the studio and chat all things Brentford. They talk Millwall, Cardiff and whether...read more
Billy The Bee and Dave Lane knock their heads together in the Virtual Boozer after two defeats on the spin, against Millwall and Cardiff, and along with the fans after the games, share their thoughts on where the Bees’ season goes from here - including the mach...read more
Middlesbrough have marched into the play-off zone and, with a two-point lead over the chasing pack, know that their chances of staying in the top six are in their own hands. They are currently on an unbeaten five-game run and have won their last three matches in their...read more
Former Brentford defender James Tarkowski’s call-up to the England squad for the forthcoming friendlies against Holland and Italy will be news to Brentford’s ears… for no other reason than it will earn our club a tasty financial windfall of around £500,000 – a figure...read more
After the sucker blow of losing to Millwall and Cardiff in a week, Brentford face another tough, organised side in Tony Pulis' Middlesbrough this weekend. Billy Grant caught up with Rob from Fly Me To The Moon fanzine (FMTTM) to get the lowdown on what is going down...read more
*This article has been updated since the postponement to reflect Cardiff's last two games. Cardiff have been in the running for promotion all season and despite a wobble over Christmas they are in pole position to finish the job. With 10 games remaining they are...read more
Derby County’s ‘agricultural’ playing style at Griffin Park earlier this season really frustrated Brentford fans who were stunned that one of the division's biggest spenders and most illustrious clubs had resorted to such extreme negativity in the 1-1 draw. Whether it...
With the transfer deadline looming and one or two Brentford players having to make decisions about their futures at Griffin Park, we thought it would be interesting to delve into the brand new Big Book of Griffin Park again and contrast how transfer negotiations have...
Griffin Park has witnessed many things in its long and eventful history, and although time is running out for the old girl with the new stadium about to be built, we all hope there’s some significant history yet to be made at our proud old home. However, I can’t see...
The most significant event to happen at Griffin Park after joining the Football League in 1920 was, without doubt, the appointment of Harry Curtis as the club’s manager – some may even go as far as to say it was the most significant moment in the club’s entire...
Ex Brentford striker Bob Taylor joined the Beesotted crew, Marcus Gayle, Kev O'Connor and a room full of Brentford fans at the Fullers’ Brewery for the traditional end of year Bees-Up. A hilarious evening in which he told of his partnership with Nicky Forster as one...
Brentford's impressive home record to date this year, despite several 'wish-we-could-have-avoided' draws against 'teams-like' opposition, is something we all hope continues for the rest of the season, however, the 2017/18 run hasn't got a patch on events from 88 years...