Brentford 2-0 Bolton Wanderers

  • January 13, 2018 | By Chris Mann
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Bolton's recent resurgence came to a crashing halt at Griffin Park, as they were second best in a disappointing 2-0 defeat to Brentford.

Prior to last weekend's FA Cup exit at the hands of Huddersfield Town, Wanderers had claimed back-to-back victories and lifted themselves out of the Championship relegation zone.

Sunderland's lunchtime loss at Cardiff City gave the Trotters an opportunity to put some daylight between themselves and the drop zone, but late strikes in each half from Florian Jozefzoon and substitute Neal Maupay gave the Bees a comfortable three points.

Phil Parkinson made three changes to the side that dropped out of the FA Cup last weekend, as Ben Alnwick, Gary Madine and the debuting Harry Charsley came in at the expense of Mark Howard, Aaron WIlbraham and Adam Le Fondre, all of whom were named amongst the substitutes.

With injuries to Karl Henry and Darren Pratley leaving Wanderers light on defensive midfield options, Josh Vela was partnered by Derik Osede, while Jem Karacan's appearance on the bench marked his first public sighting since a defeat at Aston Villa in September.

Once the action had got underway in the capital, it was the visitors who created the first opportunity as David Wheater rose highest to meet a corner from Filipe Morais, only to see his goalbound header blocked before being cleared to safety.

Brentford's first chance arrived with 10 minutes on the clock, as Ollie Watkins dragged a shot across the face of Alnwick's goal, shortly before Mark Little became the first player to enter the referee's notebook for a pull on Jozefzoon.

Wheater soon followed Little into the book, while the deadlock was broken on 40 minutes as the home side took the lead.

After Watkins had seen a shot blocked, Lasse Vibe kept the attack alive by playing the ball wide to Jozefzoon. Despite the narrowing angle, he guided an effort on target and into the top corner beyond a helpless Alnwick.

Bolton had struggled to create anything in the final third but came close to an equaliser in added time, but Madine's shot on the turn was blocked by Yoann Barbet as Brentford took their 1-0 advantage into the half-time interval.

There were no changes to either side at the start of the second-half, which began with Brentford wondering just how they didn't double their advantage.

Vibe's excellent through ball put Jozefzoon in the clear but with only Alnwick left to beat, the Wanderers goalkeeper spread himself well to get down and smother at his feet.

Clearly struggling in the attacking department, Wanderers made their first substitution on 55 minutes as Will Buckley came on in place of Charsley.

His introduction failed to have the desired effect, however, as it was the Bees who came close to finding the net on the hour, with Nico Yennaris seeing a thunderbolt of a strike come back off the post.

Wheater then saw a header kept out by Daniel Bentley in the Brentford goal, moments before he made another stop to deny Madine after a defensive mix-up involving Yoann Barbet and Andreas Bjelland presented him with a close-range opportunity.

Le Fondre was thrown on midway through the half for Bolton, with Morais the one to depart on this occasion, and the change almost had an instant impact, as Bentley made another save to keep out an effort from Buckley.

Vibe twice fired wide of Alnwick's goal as Brentford looked to seal the points inside the final 10 minutes, while the final throw of the dice for the visitors saw Aaron Wilbraham join the attack at the expense of Little.

Wanderers were picked off in the closing stages though, with a scuffed shot from Sergi Canos falling kindly at the feet of Maupay, who kept his composure to backheel home from inside the six-yard box and confirm victory for the hosts.

Defeat for Bolton sees them drop one place to 21st in the Championship table - just one point above Burton Albion and the relegation zone.

They return to action next Saturday, when they run out at Macron Stadium for the visit of Ipswich Town.

Brentford: Bentley, Yennaris, Mepham, Bjelland, Barbet, Woods, Mokotjo, Jozefzoon (Canos 77), Sawyers, Watkins, Vibe (Maupay 86)
Subs Not Used: Daniels, MacLeod, McEachran, Marcondes, Clarke
Goals: Jozefzoon 40, Maupay 90+1

Bolton Wanderers: Alnwick, Robinson, Beevers, Wheater, Little (Wilbraham 84), Osede, Vela, Charsley (Buckley 55), Morais (Le Fondre 68), Ameobi, Madine
Subs Not Used: Howard, A Taylor, Karacan, Darby
Booked: Little, Wheater, Madine, Robinson, Ameobi

Referee: Andy Davies
Attendance: 9,507

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
11 Ipswich Town 20 27
12 Cheltenham Town 19 27
13 Bolton Wanderers 20 26
14 Accrington Stanley 19 24
15 Charlton Athletic 20 23
View Full Standings >>


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