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Notts County 0 - 1 Brentford FC

Joe Jones

What a game, but what a cruel result. A right slug-fest of a match, with both teams trading chances like two boxers would trade jabs and hooks, full of end to end action, with the result only confirmed by one individual slip-up... I'm afraid I'll have to use the word "sucker-punch" once again this season, because that's exactly what happened against Notts. Brentford ran out 1-0 winners today thanks to one, completely against the run of play. And it hurts.

Alan Sheehan was back on the left side of defence after recovering from his knock in midweek, while Loanee Morgan Fox was named among the substitutes alongside fellow new recruit Callum Ball from just down the A52. Meanwhile, Marcus Haber’s red card at Bradford meant Shaun Derry would pair Callum McGregor up with Danny Haynes in attack.

The game began well for the Magpies, who saw Jack Grealish fire a shot in the fourth minute. David Button, Brentford keeper, then denied Haynes' follow-up. Just a minute later, Haynes marauded forward and caused panic in the Bees defence, but Button was quick to it.

Next attempt came from the visitors, Adam Forshaw curling just past the Notts post from a good 25 yards out on eight minutes.

Jamal Campbell-Ryce, on a kind of renaissance since Shaun Derry's appointment, lashed in a cross which very nearly went in, sadly flying just beyond the back post. Just a few minutes later, a Sheehan free kick bounced awkwardly in the Brentford box, but Alan McCormack cleared.

At the other end, Forshaw again caused trouble, sending a volley wide on 22.

The action kept coming thick and fast, and on 25, Liddle thought he'd scored his second goal for Notts, but his scissor kick was blocked off the line by Clayton Donaldson.

On the half hour mark, William Grigg sent a low cross into the Notts area, but Dean Leacock blocked it well and punted it upfield.

On 38, Andre Boucaud lashed a right-foot shot from outside the box, but Button sewed it up well, while in the 42nd minute, Haynes marauded into the box and crossed low, only for JCR to blast it over.

Sadly, the 44th minute saw Boucaud gift the ball to Toumani Diogouraga, who sliced it in for Grigg to prod home.

A massive blow, Notts nevertheless came back fighting in the second half. On 50, a Haynes cross was thwarted by a Brentford handball, which the ref didn't give, the subsequent Liddle cross coming to nothing.

Grealish, McGregor and JCR were working fantastically together, seeing countless shots and crosses blocked or saved, before another near-deadly mistake by Boucaud deep in the Notts half luckily didn't see Notts go 2-0 down, Bart parrying the subsequent shot away. Likewise with a great Donaldson shot which went ever so slightly wide on 61.

This would continue right until the end of the game, both teams trading shots, to the tune of 20 for Notts and 15 for Brentford, on average one every three minutes in the match plus injury time.

If this was a boxing match, Notts would have come out on top, with better possession, more shots on goal, and thrice the amount of corners, were it not for the knockout blow administered by Gregg at the end of the first half.

Notts will also feel aggrieved with another abject refereeing display, having seen two potential penalty shouts for handball waved away.

Good display from Notts, much better than those monstrosities in the weeks leading up to Chris Kiwomya's sacking. But good displays alone won't cut it any more. We need points, and we need them desperately.

What will it take for Notts to win a game, never mind enough of them to actually climb up the table? Six points from safety now, and in danger of slipping away week on week.

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it hurt, the only goal coming from a simple mistake. basically allowed them to walk into our box and shoot, its a shame but that would have hurt the players more. bart was clearly annoyed by it! the game was fun, i liked it and i sat thinking at each point we could get something.

thanks jj! please visit the community more, i like your input!

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It was a good encounter, Brentford played quite well when we let them. Second half we allowed them to come into the game but I am content with the performance. It gives me hope we can save ourselves!

Thanks for the quick write up.

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Pride of Nottingham is an independent fansite devoted to Notts County, the world’s oldest professional football club. Created in 2013, it has served as a source of Magpie news, features, match previews, reports, analysis and interviews for more than three years.

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