Seven years ago last October, Andy Scott took his Brentford side to St Andrew’s with a place in the last eight of the EFL Cup up for grabs.
As a League One side, The Bees had already dumped out Premier League opposition in their run to Round Four following their penalty shoot-out win over Everton in the previous round. Alex McLeish’s side had progressed to the last 16 with home wins over Rochdale and MK Dons and were expected to easily add The Bees to that list.
More than 3,000 Brentford fans made the Tuesday night journey up the M40 and were treated to a resilient Bees display. Myles Weston had the best chance of the opening 45 minutes, bringing a fine save out of Maik Taylor in the home goal, but it was in the second-half which the game came to life.
Michael Spillane brought another save out of Taylor before The Bees found a way through. Weston fed Charlie MacDonald and he teed up Sam Wood to blast into the corner in front of the travelling fans. The goal came with 20 minutes to play and forced the home side to pour forward looking for a leveller.
As the game entered injury-time it looked like Scott’s side would hold on, especially when Richard Lee made a fine save to deny Craig Gardner in the dying seconds. However, in the final minute Blues launched one final attack with Kevin Phillips in the right place to send the tie to extra time.
Neither side could find a way through so, for the second tie running, Brentford had a chance to knock out Premier League opponents on penalties. Spillane and Lee Bowyer both missed from the spot leaving the pressure on Craig Woodman to score and send the tie to sudden death. However, the left-back’s effort was weak and Taylor made the save, ending The Bees record-breaking run in the competition.
Having stumbled past The Bees, McLeish’s side beat local rivals Aston Villa in the Fifth Round before overturning a first-leg deficit to book their spot at Wembley with victory over West Ham in the semi-final. An 89th minute goal from Obafemi Martins goal in the final decided the game in Blues favour and saw them pick up their first major silverware in nearly half-a-century.
Tonight's game is on General Sale from just £28 adults and £6 juniors. Join us for our final Brentford Night of the campaign.