Sports Gazette

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

Brentford move closer to promotion after pulsating clash with Middlesbrough

Posted on 8 February 2020 by Hamish Percy
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Brentford 3-2 Middlesbrough

Ollie Watkins late winner ensured Brentford maintain pressure on their Championship promotion rivals.

The Bees took the lead in the first-half through Julian Jeanvier’s scrappy goal before Lewis Wing equalised for Middlesbrough.

Bryan Mbeumo’s deflected shot took Brentford back in front shortly after but Boro soon equalised again through Ashley Fletcher’s header.

Watkins then sealed Brentford’s victory with his 20th goal of the season to take the Bees up to fourth in the championship, just two points behind second-placed Leeds.

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Brentford came close to scoring 20 minutes in when Josh Dasilva’s headed effort hit the post before Boro defender Dael Fry cleared off the line.

The Bees broke the deadlock when Mathias Jensen’s corner was headed back across goal for Jeanvier to poke home from close range.

Boro levelled just before the hour mark, Wing’s 25 yard volley clipping the inside of the post as it soared in.

Mbeumo restored Brentford’s lead 2 minutes later when his shot took a deflection off Harold Moukoudi and sailed passed Aynsley Pears.

Boro then equalised from a 63rd minute corner, Fletcher’s glancing header falling into the corner of the Brentford goal, but this wasn’t enough to share the spoils.

Watkins fired home in the 87th minute securing three points which might prove vital to the Bees playoff hopes.

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Brentford head coach Thomas Frank was delighted with his sides performance:

“Winning in that way, of course, with a late winner is always a top feeling. It was a tough game and Middlesbrough did well,” Frank said.

“What I liked is that we kept going and showed that coolness that we have shown in critical moments of games and we’ve kept taking opportunities and chances.”

Meanwhile Middlesbrough manager Jonathan Woodgate was full of praise for his opponents:

“They are a good team near the top of the table,” Woodgate said.

“Although I am disappointed not to get a point out of the game.

“Theyre a top side.”