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2 August 2014

Moses Odubajo scores a superb winning goal as Brentford beat Crystal Palace

Moses Odubajo scored a brilliant winning goal as Brentford ended their pre-season friendly programme with a 3-2 win over Crystal Palace.

The Bees had gone 2-0 up early in the second half only to be pegged back before Odubajo’s wonderful winner.

Jonathan Douglas spread the play and Odubajo controlled it on his chest on the right, he lifted it over Joel Ward and headed towards the box before cutting inside Scott Dann and slotting home.

It was a superb goal to win a very good game of football.

An entertaining first half had ended all square but Douglas put The Bees in front early in the second.

Andre Gray made it two but Palace hit back before Odubajo won it.

Brentford made the early running – Wayne Hennessey tipped a Stuart Dallas header over the bar and kept out a low Alan Judge shot.

Dallas also had a volley blocked in the opening five minutes as The Bees took the game to their Premier League visitors.

But Palace included many of the players had made a vital contribution in keeping them in the top flight last year and, after a slow start, they began to show their attacking g prowess.

A Mile Jedinak shot deflected narrowly wide off James Tarkowski and David Button palmed away a lofted cross-cum-shot from Glenn Murray.

Button then saved well when Jedinak headed unmarked at the far post and Judge went close at the other end when The Bees broke quickly and Gray and Dallas linked on the left.

Jason Puncheon lifted a lob over from distance and Dallas shot over at the other end as the match developed in to an entertaining, attacking encounter.

Tony Craig blocked a Joel Ward shot and Jedinak fired well over but the better chances were coming for the hosts.

Adrian Mariappa had to clear off the line when Gray got in behind and on to a Douglas pass and lobbed Hennessy and a header from Palace defender Damien Delaney flew just past his own post.

Odubajo shot narrowly wide after a nice turn and Judge fired a free kick in to a defensive wall.

At the other end, Yannick Bolasie blazed one effort well over but went closer with a fierce low drive that Button saved; he then curled a shot over from a tight angle.

Gray missed the best chance of the first half when Dallas met an Alan McCormack cross, the effort was blocked but dropped loose and the Brentford striker volleyed over.

Dallas lashed over in the dying seconds of the first half and Murray missed the target after cutting inside seconds after the break.

There was no shortage of action in the first 45 minutes but no goals – that changed in a big way early in the second half.

Brentford got the first as Douglas twisted his way past two defenders in the inside right channel before curling a shot home from 15 yards.

Ledley was crowded out as he tried to stroke home a cross from the increasingly influential Bolasie and Button gathered a low Murray cross while Gray fired over at the other end.

The Brentford striker did not, however, have to wait long for his goal.

Dallas played a key role, picking out Gray but the Brentford striker turned and fired an unerring shot past substitute goalkeeper Julian Speroni from 18 yards to double the home side’s lead.

Palace’s response to going two down was swift and emphatic.

They go one back within a minute when Bolasie played a ball in to the box, neither Tarkowski nor Crag could clear and Murray nipped in to round Button and lift the ball in.

And they were level moments later – Bolasie was again involved, escaping on the Palace right, his cut back was met by Ledley, his low shot was kept out by Button but Marouane Chamakh turned it home from close range.

Brentford responded well after falling behind – Gray had a shot blocked and McCormack fired wide before a Douglas had shot deflected wide and then a header saved.

Speroni saved a dipping, swerving shot from Judge and Jake Bidwell curled a free kick over the bar.

Palace offered little after equalising – Jedinak fired over from distance – as Brentford pushed again.

And then they got a wonderful winning goal.

The win could have been more convincing – Montell Moore had a shot blocked and Judge fired wide before then blasting over from distance.

Chamakh headed wide for the visitors and Puncheon had a shot blocked.

A Ward effort was also blocked from a short corner and Judge fired wide as Brentford broke quickly.

In the dying seconds Bolasie had a shot blocked and Murray curled over but Palace could not find a way through and Brentford took the win.

Brentford: Button; McCormack (sub Yennaris 73 mins), Tarkowski (sub Dean 73 mins), Craig, Bidwell; Tébar (sub Diagouraga 73 mins), Douglas, Judge; Odubajo, Gray (sub Moore 73 mins), Dallas (sub Smith 61 mins)

Crystal Palace: Hennessey (sub Speroni h/t); Mariappa, Dann, Delaney, Ward; Puncheon, Jedinak, Ledley, Bolasie; Murray, Chamakh

Attendance: 3,624 (1,527 away fans)

By Chris Wickham

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