Brentford 2 Southampton 2

Updated: July 22, 2017

My latest pre season outing took me to Griffin Park for Brentford Vs Southampton on a rather soggy afternoon in West London.

My last and only visit to Griffin Park was way back in 2001 when a then fresh faced 20 year old Pete saw his beloved Norwich City side lose 1-0 in stoppage time, so would history repeat itself and see the Bees record a morale boosting win over Premier League opponents.

The hosts were taking part in their fourth pre season outing although this was the first home one, and having recorded wins against Aldershot Town and Oxford United and a draw against Lasanne-Sport they were heading into this one unbeaten.

However Southampton would surely prove Brentford’s sternest test so far, although this was only the Premier League sides second pre season outing after getting it underway last weekend with a 0-0 against Swiss side St Gallen.

The hosts had scored ten goals in their previous three pre season outings and in the opening ten minutes showed their attacking threat and saw two decent openings concern the visitors defence. The Bees had conceded five in those games and were almost breached in this contest when a Saints header was well tipped over by Daniel Bentley.

Bentley had to be alert to tip over another decent effort from the visitors however the Bees were still looking for that breakthrough too and were more than matching their Premier League visitors.

And then came a decent period for the hosts and this almost resulted in the home side taking the lead after a great run resulted in an effort going inches wide of the far post, whilst up the other end Saints wanted a penalty but the referee thought otherwise.

But with six minutes of the half remaining the deadlock was broken and it came from a terrific Brentford attack which ended with a ball across goal being bundled home by Lasse Vibe and it was just rewards for their decent spell beforehand.

Saints almost levelled just before half time when they flashed a ball across the hosts six yard box but it was the Championship side who went into the break a goal ahead.

Saints boss Mauricio Pellegrino, who was taking charge of only his second game after joining in the summer, had obviously given his side a pep talk in the changing room as they came out a different side and so nearly levelled when after bursting through the Brentford defence could only loft wide

However seven minutes into the second period the Saints did level when a defensive slip allowed Charlie Austin in on goal and he made no mistake by slotting beyond Bentley and gave the rather large Saints following behind the goal something to cheer.

It was to get better for them on the hour mark to as the visitors went ahead when they burst down the left and saw a cross into the box rifled into the roof of the net by Austin as the Saints were beginning to show their Premier League class.

Both sides made several changes thereafter as they looked to try out as many squad players as possible but initially the visitors continued to control the contest, much like they had done throughout the second half.

As the game entered it’s final fifteen minutes though the Bees began to buzz again and startes to see more of the ball and did force a decent save from Fraser Forster as they looked for an equaliser.

And with eight minutes remaining they found that leveller when Josh Clarke swung a ball into the box and keeper Forster came to claim it but allowed the ball to sail through his hands and into the net. Forster claimed he had been fouled but the referee saw no infringement so the game was all square.

Suddenly it was the hosts who looked more likely to find a winner and they pushed hard for one however they could not find it and the game ended all square.

It had certainly been a very good competitive contest played in good spirit and no doubt both sides would take alot of positives from it going forward.

And one final word. All of today’s gate money went to the victims and families of the Grenfell Tower disaster and with several thousand turning up for this one that’s good money raised for those people affected so that is a good way to end. Marvellous

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