Sports Gazette

by sports journalism students at St Mary's University, London

Brentford 5 -1 Hull City: Benrahma’s hat-trick helps Bees to sixth consecutive home win

Posted on 23 February 2019 by Darren Barnard

The Algerian’s first hat-trick in his professional career helped Thomas Frank’s side recover from their 4-1 defeat to Swansea in the FA Cup fifth round last weekend.

Hull have now won only once in their last 16 visits to London and any hopes of a late playoff run seem to have faded.

The Yorkshire side started the game brightly as they looked to involve January Championship Player of the Month — Jarrod Bowen in the early stages.

The Tigers began to experience some joy when they utilised Kamil Grosicki on the opposing flank. The Pole managed to pick out Ewandro on the back post but the Hull man was always stretching for it and couldn’t direct it goalwards.

The Bees began to fight back and gain a footing in the game with their first significant moment falling to Ollie Watkins but he dragged his effort wide.

Just as Frank’s side seemed to settle, it was the Polish winger who broke down the left again. He picked out Fraizer Campbell with a pinpoint cross that only needed to be directed either side of Daniel Bentley to give the away side the advantage halfway through the first half.

Frank’s side won for the first time against Hull today since the final day of the 2004/5 season.

The striker now has 11 goals in this campaign — his best return since his loan spell with Hull over a decade ago.

A driving run from Said Benrahma four minutes later set up an opportunity for Kamoholo Mokotjo to slide the ball into David Marshall’s bottom right-hand corner with equivalent accuracy to Grosicki’s cross earlier in the half.

Griffin Park’s rocking. The Yorkshire based support on the other hand are all too familiar with the lapses in concentration that has seen them concede four goals in the two games preceding today.

It would get worse for the Tigers. Benrahma sealed off a spectacular individual first half performance with some footwork that wouldn’t have looked out of place amongst the midweek Champions League action.

The Algerian international yo-yoed the ball between either feet at speed leaving Hull defenders in his wake before finding the far corner with an effort that was aided by a deflection.

He got his second and Brentford’s third in the 43rd minute as Neal Maupay brilliantly kept the move alive with great use of his body to shield the ball in the build-up. It eventually found it’s way to the Algerian just needing him to curl the ball into the same side he did ten minutes prior.

The half ended with Brentford threatening to score on every attack as Maupay’s involvement increased and invited the dynamic runs of Watkins and Benrahma around him.

It seemed Hull’s search for another win in the capital would continue.

Before today, Brentford’s last five Championship goals had come after the 70th minute mark. However, they would have four before the hour here as Hull’s afternoon seemingly came to an end.

The Bees had continued the second half as if they had barely paused for breath.

Just six minutes had passed and it was about time that Brentford’s leading man — Maupay would get on the scoresheet.

Watkins created the opportunity after his initial drilled effort was saved by substitute keeper George Long, but he had the presence of mind to header the rebound deftly over him to set up the striker’s easiest finish out of the 18 he’s scored this campaign.

Hull supporters were thankful to see Sergi Canos’ effort go wide of the goal as the scoreline threatened to resemble a recent Chris Gayle innings.

Five minutes later an effort from Jarrod Bowen was curled wide of Bentley’s goal, followed by the youngster hanging his head embodying how every Hull fan must have felt towards their team’s performance.

The 22 year old is understandably desired by several Premier League clubs but he never looked like adding to his 16 goal tally this afternoon. This was largely due to a superbly disciplined performance from Brentford’s left back Moses Odubajo, who featured for the away side for three years before joining the Bees.

Shortly before being taken off, Maupay was able to force an excellent reflex save from Long, who was doing all he could to prevent the scoreline getting embarrassing.

Through no fault of his own, he was unable to stop the bleeding as Brentford smelt blood and continue to hunt for more devastating blows.

Who would strike that next blow? Benrahma again of course. He would complete his hat-trick with another finish as well-placed as his previous two.

The home side have now scored five goals at Griffin Park on three separate occasions this year.

Brentford remain in 16th, whereas any hope for Hull’s playoff run have vanished.