Honours even at Jersey Road as Us net late on
Brentford’s Youth Team picked up their first point in five games this afternoon, as they held Colchester United to a 1-1 draw at Jersey Road in the U18 Professional Development League Two South.
An uneventful first half ended goalless with few clear chances for either side, but with seventeen minutes to play, Kyjuon Marsh-Brown guided home Josh Bohui’s cross for his second goal of the season.
But, as has been displayed all too often this season, the Bees were pegged back just seven minutes later when Diaz Wright poked George Brown’s cross past Ellery Balcombe from close range.
There were few changes to the side that were defeated by Watford on 19 December; George Harmes was dropped to the bench, in came Tyrick Mitchell, whilst Julius Fenn-Evans replaced Ian Carlo Poveda and Marsh-Brown made his first start of the season ahead of the absent Kingsley Eshun.
The two sides played out a 1-1 draw in Essex at the start of November in poor weather conditions and the trend continued into this game with a rainy few days leaving the Jersey Road pitch less than perfect.
Colchester’s first chance came inside the first ten minutes when goalscorer Wright found a route into the box and hit a shot that was well blocked by Chris Mepham and, just minutes later, Fenn-Evans misplaced a shot in the centre circle, but Balcombe mopped up Brown’s resultant shot.
Whilst Balcombe was undoubtedly the busier keeper for much of the game, Colchester stopper Danny Bonness was beaten early on when Danny Parish slotted past him, only for the linesman to rule it out for offside.
Brentford - without a win since 17 October – were creating viable openings but were not clinical enough in the final third; as was proved when Marsh-Brown’s low cross in to the box went unchallenged with at least three Brentford players in the vicinity; the U’s were far more potent in their attacks.
After half an hour, the Bees saw another chance go begging as Bohui’s shot was picked out of the air by Bonness with Parish waiting to pounce at the far post; Giovanni McGregor had his sights on a birthday goal, but smashed Chris Mepham’s headed knockdown well over.
The second half could only improve on the slightly drab first period and nine minutes in, Parish had another opportunity to open the scoring when he traded passes with Bohui but couldn’t get enough power on the shot to cause Bonness any real trouble.
Then came Colchester’s chance to give Brentford a scare, and that they did, with Ross Debrick having an overhead kick saved before Callum Jones and Decarrey Sherriff both had dangerous shots on target well claimed by Balcombe.
And with little over 15 minutes to play, Brentford finally took the lead. Bohui made a signature searching run down the left-wing and squared for Marsh-Brown, who took a touch and coolly slotted past Bonness.
From the restart, Balcombe had to be at his very best to prevent an immediate equaliser as he tipped a Wright shot onto the bar from point-blank range; Sherriff couldn’t find a way to equalise from the rebound.
Ten minutes from time, the visitors did find a way back into the game after the Bees didn’t clear their lines quickly enough, allowing Brown to cross for the impressive Wright, who duly tucked his shot past Balcombe from five yards.
Still, Brentford couldn’t muster another attack and continue their three month search for a win at home to Charlton Athletic next Saturday (16 January).
Brentford: Ellery Balcombe, Zach Birse, Chris Mepham, Tyrick Mitchell, Seth Owens (Sean Bird 41), Giovanni McGregor, Julius Fenn-Evans, Pablo Gonzalez (George Harmes 81), Josh Bohui, Kyjuon Marsh-Brown, Danny Parish (Luke Dunn 86)
Unused subs: Cameron Greaves, Ian Carlo Poveda
Colchester United: Danny Bonness, Jamie Stephens (Jake Mulryne 84), Osase JJ Wilson, Diaz Wright, Joe Tennent, Jacob Partridge, George Brown, Joshua Pollard (Billy Holmes 70), Callum Jones (Josce Syrett 73), Decarrey Sherriff, Ross Debrick
Unused subs: Callum Robinson