Brentford recovered from conceding an early goal to pick up a point in a memorable 3-3 draw away to Newcastle United. The Bees levelled within seconds of conceding the first of the afternoon’s six goals as Ivan Toney found the net. They went ahead twice thanks to Rico Henry and an own goal that Frank Onyeka that will try to claim, but Newcastle responded and earned a share of the spoils.
It was a rip-roaring match that was helter-skelter almost throughout. Brentford played on the front foot and had the lead going in to the final 15 minutes. But Newcastle were positive from the first whistle and created enough to feel they deserve a share of the spoils.
It was an all-action start to the contest with two goals and a series of other chances inside the first 15 minutes. The two goals came within 60 seconds of each other with Brentford responding immediately after falling behind. Toney’s third goal of the Premier League season, all away from home, ensure The Bees had parity after the opening exchanges.
Newcastle probably the better of the first part of the game. They could have opened the scoring when Callum Wilson met a cross from Joelinton and nodded it just wide. Joelinton then ran from deep and fired in a shot that was deflected wide. Matt Ritchie delivered the corner, Jamal Lascelles rose highest and headed home off the post. The central defender was able to place his header well and give his team the lead.
Brentford had gone close before the goal when Bryan Mbeumo found space inside the penalty area and picked out Sergi Canós with a cross. The effort from Canós was poked rather than fired and it rolled wide. Newcastle scored soon after and Brentford needed a quick response. It could scarcely have been quicker.
Brentford played long from kick off and Toney won the first aerial challenge. The ball bounced around the Newcastle half and Mbeumo and Canós battled for it. Canós was able to feed the ball to Toney in the inside right channel, the striker took a touch and drilled a shot through Karl Darlow and in to the net. The Newcastle goalkeeper appeared to have the shot covered, but it burst through his hands and nestled in the far corner.
The game continued at a frantic pace with both sides keen to attack. Allan Saint-Maximin headed a Jacob Murphy cross wide for the hosts before Brentford had the ball in the net at the other end. Mbeumo found space in the Newcastle half and ran at goal, he cut on to his left foot and curled a shot across Darlow. The ball beat the goalkeeper, hit the post, and was tapped in by the arriving Toney. Assistant Referee Edwards Smart decided Toney was offside and after a check with Video Assistant Referee Kevin Friend, the goal was ruled out.
Canós had to make an important defensive interception when it looked as if Wilson would have a chance to shoot from ten yards for the home side. Saint-Maximin got on to the loose ball, but his low shot was saved by Álvaro Fernández. At the other end, Henry and Mbeumo combined on the left to open Newcastle up. Henry’s chipped pass released Mbeumo in the box, his low ball fizzed across and was pushed out by Darlow. Toney got on to it and fired it at goal, but Ciaran Clark got his body in the way to keep Brentford out.
Just after the half hour, Brentford did get their second goal. The ball was spread to the right by Vitaly Janelt and Canós cut back to cross with his left foot to the far post. Henry arrived to head down, past Darlow and in to the net. Brentford had turned the game around and seemed to have the upper hand. They were finding space in midfield and exploiting the gaps between Newcastle’s lines, but the home side soon responded.
Fernández saved from Wilson just before Brentford’s goal and a Murphy ball then fizzed across the six-yard box, just lacking a final touch. Fabian Schär had a long range shot blocked for the hosts before a great move at the other end almost gave Brentford a third. One-touch play from Mbeumo and Saman Ghoddos gave space for Toney to half volley at goal from 20 yards. The ball seemed to accelerate as it flew towards Darlow, but the Newcastle goalkeeper was well-positioned to keep it out.
The home side were pushing and levelled six minutes before the break. Saint-Maximin was afforded too much space in the inside left channel and cut in towards goal. His shot was blocked but it fell to Joelinton, who took a touch and steered a shot in to the corner. Joelinton opened himself up and once he hit the target, Fernández had little chance.
With the interval approaching, that could have been the signal for the teams to let up, but not a bit, both continued to fly forward. Newcastle certainly had the initiative as the interval approached but a Mads Roerslev shot may have tested Darlow had it not been blocked. Most of the action was at the other end with Newcastle getting men behind Brentford’s wing backs and looking to flood the penalty area with attacking players and crosses.
A pass from Saint-Maximin appeared to show Joe Willock a way to goal, but Ethan Pinnock got back to make a recovery tackle. When Brentford failed to deal with a free kick soon after, Wilson fired at goal, but Toney was well-positioned to block on the line. Saint-Maximin fired over and Joelinton headed straight at Fernández as the half ended level.
The home side would haver been the happier at the break while the interval gave Brentford a chance to regroup. There were periods of the first half when they pushed Newcastle back and found space to create chances. But the home side spent a lot of the half on the attack and Fernández was the busier goalkeeper.
The start of the second period was definitely less frantic than most of the first had been. Brentford were more circumspect in possession, keeping the ball in their own half for spells. An early booking for Wilson ensured a slow start to the second half and few early chances.
The chances that did come in the opening exchanges of the second half went the way of Newcastle. Fernández saved a header from Schär and then held on to a drilled cross-cum-shot from Ritchie. Newcastle had a great chance when a long pass from Jonjo Shelvey freed Willock inside the area, he found Saint-Maximin with a pass and the shot flew across the face of goal and just wide. Fernández was scrambling across his goal and seemed to be beaten, but the shot flew wide.
Brentford had not been seen much as an attacking threat in the second half, but on the hour, they made their mark. A Canós pass released Mbeumo in behind the Newcastle defence and it took a fine tackle from Darlow rushing out to prevent a clear run on an empty goal. But Newcastle couldn’t clear their lines. Henry had space on the left and bundled his way past Murphy, there was space for Onyeka to shoot and the ball flicked Lascelles and beat Darlow.
Onyeka had only been on the pitch a matter of seconds and made an immediate impact. Henry created the space with his tenacity and Onyeka had the room to shoot. The Brentford man will try to claim it, but it is likely to go down as an own goal for Lascelles.
Clark headed wide as Newcastle tried to respond. Saint-Maximin then got away on the left and drilled in a cross that hit Pontus Jansson inside the six-yard box, Fernández made himself big, the ball cannoned off him and Brentford held on to their lead. Canós had a chance to extend it with a free kick from the left which he whipped over the bar, and Newcastle were level moments later.
Space was created in the inside right channel for Ryan Fraser, recently introduced as a substitute, to measure a cross. He picked out Saint-Maximin arriving at the far post and the shot ripped past Fernández and in to the net. The Brentford goalkeeper had no chance as the ball whistled in to the net and the game was level again.
That left 15 minutes for either side to try and win it. It was Brentford that went immediately on the attack. Darlow pushed away a shot from Onyeka that looked destined for the top corner, despite the narrow angle, and Mbeumo fired a loose ball over the bar. Toney then looked like he had put Mbeumo away and in to the penalty area, but Fraser made a challenge as the trigger was being pulled.
The best chance of the later stages went the way of Newcastle. Saint-Maximin broke free and ran half the length of the pitch before releasing Joelinton inside the area to his right. Joelinton could have shot but chose to cut back, stumbled and was dispossessed.
Saint-Maximin had a shot blocked and Wilson lashed wide at the near post. Wilson also saw a shot pinball around the area before rolling wide. Henry could have won it for The Bees when he got on to a Mbeumo pass on the left, but Darlow rushed out, saved at his feet, and ensured the game finished all square.
Newcastle United: Darlow; Schär (sub Longstaff 71 mins), Lascelles, Clark; Murphy, Shelvey, Willock (sub Fraser 71 mins), Ritchie; Joelinton, Wilson, Saint-Maximin
Subs (not used): Dúbravka, Lewis, Hayden, Krafth, Manquillo, Almirón, Gayle
Bookings: Wilson (46 mins), Saint-Maximin (75 mins)
Brentford: Fernández; Roerslev (sub Goode 80 mins), Jansson, Pinnock; Canós, Janelt (sub Baptiste 89 mins), Nørgaard, Ghoddos (sub Onyeka 59 mins), Henry; Toney, Mbeumo
Subs (not used): Cox, Thompson, Bidstrup, Maghoma, Haygarth, Forss
Bookings: Ghoddos (42 mins), Nørgaard (83 mins)