Brentford continued their pre-season friendly schedule with a 3-2 win over Shrewsbury Town. The Bees travelled to Shropshire with half their squad as they are also playing a game against a Premier League side behind closed doors. That meant five more players could get 90 minutes under their belt and Emiliano Marcondes Camargo Hansen, one of them, grabbed the winner inside the final ten minutes.
The Bees had taken the lead three times on the afternoon and while Shrewsbury pegged them back twice, they could not respond to Emiliano’s goal. Marcus Forss scored Brentford’s first early on but that lead lasted seconds as Fejiri Okenabirhie equalised. An own goal from Aristote Nsiala put Brentford ahead again and the visitors took that lead in to the break.
But Shrewsbury responded again and equalised for a second time when Aaron Amandi-Holloway headed in a corner. With Shrewsbury making a series of changes, Brentford’s greater cohesion ensured they overcame the benefit of fresh legs for the visitors and continued to hold the upper hand. When Emiliano scored, it was a third goal that was deserved and settled the game.
Brentford were on the front foot early on and while they were not always at top speed, they were the team looking to play through midfield and create openings. The Bees were also winning lots of set pieces and looking dangerous from many of them. Omar Beckles diverted a Ryan Woods free kick just past his own post before good work from Romain Sawyers and Forss set up a shooting chance for Sergi Canós but Nsiala made a block.
Shrewsbury could have taken the lead against the run of play when a corner was half cleared to Doug Loft, his ball found Amandi-Holloway at the far post but he failed to control and the chance was gone. That summed up the opening exchanges as neither team could quite find the right pass or touch in the final third. The first time Brentford did, 11 minutes in, they took the lead. The ball was won in midfield and Canós slipped it through to Forss, the Finnish striker steadied himself as the pass took Beckles out of the game and lashed a shot across Stephen Arnold and in to the net.
That could have been something for Brentford to build on but they were pegged back within seconds. A long ball down the middle was turned from a hopeful pass in to something more as Josh Clarke and Luka Racic left a gap on the right of Brentford’s defence, Luke Daniels was unable to get out and Okenabirhie moved in to the space before lashing the ball in to the top corner. Those two goals inside a minute ignited the game and Brentford went back on the attack.
Canós curled an effort over the bar for The Bees before Beckles flicked a corner from Emiliano just over his own bar. Sawyers and Emiliano were linking with Woods and providing most of Brentford’s attacking impetus and while the final ball was not always right, Brentford looked the most likely team to score. It took a superb tackle from Nsiala to stop Chiedozie Ogbene tapping in when Sawyers crossed with force and Emiliano fed it first-time back in to the box.
The next time Nsiala was involved was less positive for the home side. Emiliano delivered a corner deep for Racic to nod back across, Canós cannoned a header off the post and it bounced off Nsiala and in to the net. The Shrewsbury defender was left helpless as the ball hit him and rolled over the line and was left with his head in his hands.
That goal separated the teams at the break and there were few other chances before the interval. Brentford dominated possession but the final ball was awry and Shrewsbury’s openings were half chances at best. Alex Gillead pulled a shot wide from the edge of the penalty area and Amandi-Holloway shot wide on the turn from a similar position.
Shrewsbury did, however, equalise early in the second half. Gillead could have got it with a shot that was deflected wide and then another effort on the turn from the resulting corner that Daniels tipped away high to his left. The next corner came in from the Shrewsbury left and Amandi-Holloway rose highest to head home.
Brentford had an opening early in the half when Forss got across Beckles to meet a Canós cross but Shrewsbury’s second half goalkeeper, a trialist, saved. The home side, however, had the better of the early stages of the second half and had applied pressure before they scored. Brentford responded well and soon regained the complete control they had for most of the first half.
Canós should have scored when a great move involving Ogbene and Forss gave Sawyers the space to find the Spanish attacker in the inside left channel but he shot over from 15 yards. Emiliano then shot wide before delivered a cross that Ryan Haynes almost turned in to his own net. The left back was grateful to see the ball hit the side netting.
Stefan Payne shot in to the side netting at the other end but Brentford were doing all the attacking. Emiliano shot wide when a corner was half cleared before the goalkeeper saved from Canós at the second attempt after Sawyers had picked him out. Sawyers then flicked a header wide before a great header from Nsiala stopped the Brentford man converting another cross. Ogbene picked up the loose ball and delivered again, Forss arrived late and met the ball with his chest but turned it wide.
Yoann Barbet fired over and a Bryn Morris free kick hit a wall at the other end but the goal Brentford were threatening eventually came with eight minutes to go. Canós was unable to get on to a ball from Woods but Ogbene reacted quickest to pick up the loose ball, he fed the overlapping Ali Coote and when the cross came in Emiliano converted from close range. It was a well-worked goal and it won the game. Coote could have made it four when he shot wide late on but that didn’t stop Brentford getting their win.
Shrewsbury Town: Arnold (sub Trialist h/t); Bolton (sub Hendrie 69 mins), Nsiala (sub Kennedy 78 mins), Beckles (sub Sadler 58 mins), Haynes; Morris (sub Gnahoua 86 mins), Loft (sub Barnett 86 mins); Gillead (sub Eisa 76 mins), Nolan (sub Jones 58 mins), Okenabirhie (sub Payne 58 mins); Amandi-Holloway (sub John-Lewis 58 mins)
Brentford: Daniels; Clarke, Racic (sub Edobor 78 mins), Barbet, Field; Woods; Ogbene (sub Mitchell 86 mins), Sawyers (sub Titov 78 mins), Emiliano, Canós; Forss (sub Coote 78 mins)
Attendance: 2,454 (113 Bees fans)