Report: Blues 0 Brentford 0

Blues were left frustrated by the Bees.


Blues rounded off the 2018 calendar year with a hard-fought goalless draw against the Bees at the St. Andrew's Trillion Trophy Stadium.

The first-half was largely devoid of free flowing football, excitement and clear-cut opportunities.

However, the second period of the game was a very different encounter as both teams went for it.

Challenges flew in all over the pitch and Brentford were somewhat fortunate to still have 11 players on the field come the end of the match.

On attacking intent alone, Blues could surely count themselves unlucky to have only come away with only a point

It was a somewhat cagey opening from both sides, with the majority of the play taking place in the middle third of the pitch.

The Bees were having the majority possession without being able to fashion any clear openings.

With 18 minutes gone Blues were almost victims of their own sloppy defensive play after Jacques Maghoma gave the ball away cheaply just outside his own area.

Sergi Canos' initial attempt was blocked by Michael Morrison and the rebound found Neal Maupay who shot wide of the post and out for a goal-kick.

Blues' first attempt arrived just a minute later when former Brentford man Jota cut inside and tried his luck from distance, but his shot was comfortably saved by Daniel Bentley in the Bees goal.

Blues continued to press and Wes Harding launched a deep ball into the Brentford box, which was headed back into the danger zone by Morrison to Lukas Jutkiewicz, but he saw his close-range volley blocked by a Brentford defender.

Rico Henry was then not too far away for the visitors with a well-taken volley at the far post, but fortunately for Blues he fired down into the ground and the ball bounced just past the far post.

With half-time rapidly approaching Blues survived another scare as Maupay was allowed a free header at the far post, which he glanced not too far wide of Lee Camp's goal post.

Half-time: Blues 0 Brentford 0

Blues went close less than two minutes after the restart when Jota's pass found Maghoma, who laid it off to Che Adams.

The Blues striker let fly with a powerful snap shot, but he was unable to keep it down and it flew well over the bar.

Blues continued to drive on and Maikel Kieftenbeld saw his goalbound effort blocked by Jeanvier and then Bentley was forced to punch Jota's corner ball away.

The game was becoming increasingly feisty with several rash challenges flying in from both sets of players, so much so that the referee gathered the two captains together to presumably ask them to keep their teammates in check.

But that same controversy on the pitch had the effect of rousing into life what had been a relatively quiet home support up to that point.

As the match entered the final 20 minutes, Blues were doing their utmost to break the deadlock as they pushed forwards in numbers.

But Brentford themselves were continuing to have the occasional counter-attack. One of which saw Ollie Watkins test Camp low down at his near post.

With 11 minutes of normal remaining Omar Bogle was sent on for Adams and then 60 seconds later Connor Mahoney replaced Jota.

Blues dominated the final ten minutes but were ultimately unable to find a way through a stubborn Brentford defence and must now prepare themselves to go again in three days time at Sheffield Wednesday.

Blues: (4-4-2 Lee Camp, Maxime Colin, Maikel Kieftenbeld, Che Adams (Omar Bogle, 79), Lukas Jutkiewicz, Harlee Dean, Jacques Maghoma, Gary Gardner, Jota (Connor Mahoney, 82), Michael Morrison, Wes Harding.

Subs (not used): Connal Trueman, Craig Gardner, Dan Scarr, Josh Dacres-Cogley, Charlie Lakin.

Bookings: None.

Goals: None.

Brentford (3-4-3): Daniel Bentley, Moses Odubajo, Rico Henry, Sergi Canos (Alan Judge, 81), Neal Maupay (Said Benrahma, 66), Ollie Watkins, Josh McEachran (Nico Yennaris, 79), Romaine Sawyers, Julian Jeanvier, Ezri Konsa, Yoann Barbet.

Subs (not used): Luke Daniels, Josh Dasilva, Henrik Dalsgaard. Kamohelo Mokotjo

Bookings: Sawyers (26), Jeanvier (52), Maupay (64), Bentley (71), Barbet (76).

Goals: None.

Referee: Peter Bankes

Attendance: 23,909 (787 Brentford fans).