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27 September 2014

Jota and Alan McCormack score as Brentford beat Leeds United in Sky Bet Championship at Griffin Park

A first Brentford goal for Jota set The Bees on their way to a fully deserved win over Leeds United.

Brentford dominated the match and were well worth the three points.

Leeds goalkeeper Marco Silvestri made a series of fine saves and James Tarkowski fired a penalty over the bar for The Bees.

Jota scored at the end of the first half and Alan McCormack darted up from right back to get a second after the break and give The Bees a 2-0 win.

The early stages were fairly even with the midfield players in each team cancelling each other out.

Leeds played with a diamond in the centre of the park while Brentford had three in the middle as usual.

It meant there was little space and it was a bit congested in the opening ten minutes.

There were sights at goal for both teams – Jota shot over for The Bees and David Button saved a long range Rudolph Austin shot for the visitors – but nothing clear cut.

It was Brentford that took the game by the scruff of the net, getting their full backs and wide midfield players in to the game and using the width of the Griffin Park surface.

Chances started to come as well.

Alex Pritchard brought a low save out of Silvestri after getting on to an Andre Gray flick and the Leeds goalkeeper did well to hold on to it.

Gray then headed a whipped Jota cross wide before Pritchard got on to a Tarkowski pass and fired in a shot that deflected wide.

Giuseppe Bellusci made a superb block to divert a Gray shot away from goal after the striker had turned well before Silvestri made a brilliant save to his left to keep out an Alan Judge free kick and then got up to keep out a Moses Odubajo effort on the rebound.

Jota shot wide after turning well soon after.

Brentford were completely dominant by the midway point of the first half and were given a great chance to go in front just before the half hour.

The imperious Jonathan Douglas strode through midfield and fed Gray; he got away from the defence and went down under the challenge of Jason Pearce.

Referee Dean Whitestone awarded a penalty but only booked Pearce, despite Gray seeming as if he was about to pull the trigger from eight yards.

Tarkowski took the responsibility from the spot but fired his penalty high over the crossbar.

That failed to disrupt The Bees, however, who kept pressing.

Silvestri made a superb save from a Douglas header when Odubajo flicked on a Pritchard corner.

Pritchard then had a shot blocked before another moment that put Mr Whitestone in the centre of the action.

Pritchard played a ball through and Gray found himself alone eight yards out, Stephen Warnock came from the wrong side to make the tackle, appeared to get some of the ball and an awful lot of the Brentford striker with a challenge deemed fair by the official, who also waved away appeals ad Judge went down in the second phase.

Button saved a deflected Austin shot and then denied Alex Mowatt before Brentford got their rewards for a superb half time performance just before the break.

It came from a long Button kick that Gray recycled and went through five or six players before Douglas played the killer pass, Gray flicked it off to Jota and the Spaniard weaved his way past Pearce before lashing home.

Judge shot over early in the second half, as Brentford looked to continue where they left off, and Jota then shot over after a burst from deep.

But Leeds pressed their midfield higher up the pitch in the second period.

Austin, in particular, was closer to the strikers and Souleymane Doukara started to influence the game.

Button had to make a good save to deny Pearce and the Leeds centre half then had a header blocked by Tarkowski.

Doukara shot well wide before setting up Mirco Antenucci, who also missed the target from distance.

Tarkowski had to block another Doukara effort after a run from deep by the forward and Tony Craig then diverted a Sam Byram effort away from goal.

Brentford were on the defensive more in the early stages of the second half than the first but broke with menace when they had the chance.

From one burst Odubajo and McCormack combined to set up Gray but the striker’s shot was blocked by the legs of Silvestri.

Jota had a shot blocked and, from the resulting corner, Silvestri made a fine save to keep out a diving header from Odubajo.

The ball came back in again from the next corner but Odubajo this time turned his effort wide.

Lewis Cook had a shot blocked but Brentford had weathered the Leeds storm and Silvestri saved a curling Pritchard shot to keep his side in it.

Marcos Tébar had a great chance when, after a burst from midfield, the ball was worked to Judge, who saw his effort blocked but the midfield player reacted quickest and found himself with only Silvestri to beat but tried to dink it over him and the goalkeeper kept the ball out, McCormack smashed the loose ball over.

Brentford did not, however, have to wait too long for the second.

Douglas took a quick free kick and released McCormack, the right back strode forward and, as defenders backed off, fired in a shot from 20 yards that beat Silvestri for pace and nestled in the net.

Leeds tried to respond but Brentford were defending superbly.

An effort from Michael Tonge was blocked and Leeds were largely playing in front of the Brentford back line.

When Casper Sloth did find a way through his low effort missed the target.

Nick Proschwitz shot wide for The Bees and Doukara did the same at the other end but the game drifted towards a conclusion after McCormack’s goal.

Leeds never looked like getting back in to the game and Brentford had the win.

Brentford: Button; McCormack, Tarkowski, Craig, Bidwell; Douglas; Odubajo, Pritchard (sub Tébar 74 mins), Judge, Jota (sub Proschwitz 74 mins); Gray (sub Diagouraga 81 mins)

Subs (not used): Bonham, Dean, Toral, Betinho

Leeds United: Silvestri; Byram, Bellusci, Pearce, Warnock; Bianchi (sub Murphy 85 mins), Cook (sub Tonge 80 mins), Mowatt (sub Sloth 67 mins); Austin; Doukara, Antenucci

Subs (not used): Taylor, Wootton, Morison, Cooper

Bookings: Pearce (27 mins)

Attendance: 10,886 (1,620 away fans)

By Chris Wickham

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