Brentford have reached the summit of League One at the end of 2013 after a lively encounter against a decent MK Dons side.
This Bees side can play some wonderful football, but our early opening goal came from a long David Button punt – Clayton Donaldson shrugging off Lewington to fire home at the near post.
MK showed that they like to pass the ball through their team throughout the match – but at times in the first half this created openings for The Bees as we latched onto loose balls and closed down defenders.
Ageing lout Alan Smith picked up a customary yellow for a classless hack on Saunders before McCormack fizzed a volley at the top corner, which was tipped over the bar by the hideously orange clothed Martin.
Brentford should have added to their lead in first half – Trotta lashing high, wide and handsome when Donaldson was better placed, before later rattling the bar at full stretch from a Clayton cross.
MK played attractive football at times but failed to create real openings – a few desperate shrieks of handball from their plastic fans, moribund of history, the sum total of their first-half efforts.
After the break Brentford went up a gear and some sublime close control from Trotta and Saville eventually worked the ball loose to Saunders. The visitors defence all raced to Sam, leaving Trotta unmarked to fire home. 2-0 Bees.
It wasn’t long before Brentford scored a third, Donaldson galloping forward at pace before feeding man-of-the-match Saunders who took one touch and curled home a peach. Happy days at Griffin Park and particularly for Sam who has blossomed once more in the last few games.
With one eye on our next game at Posh, Warburton shuffled his pack – Logan and Dallas replacing McCormack and Forshaw – and Brentford lost shape. In truth MK had the better of the final 20 but had only a Lee Hodson consolation goal to parade around the gridded streets of their home town.
Had visiting striker Bamford been in better form it could have been a more difficult end to the game, but the Chelsea loanee spurned a couple of good chances to turn up the heat. Ref D’Urso also turned down a reasonable penalty shout after a lunge by Tony Craig, but nothing was given, which annoyed Karl Robinson. Shame.
With Wolves and Leyton drawing Brentford moved to the top of League One – fantastic stuff. We also have the highest points total of any side in the four divisions.
There are reports of further reinforcements on their way in the January window too – although there may yet be demands elsewhere for the players that have done so well for us this season. Exciting and nail-biting times.
Credit also to Warburton, Weir, McParland and Matthew Benham who later turned up to support the Beesotted charity gig in The Globe later in aid of The Phillipines. What a special club we support.