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BRENTFORD 1 IPSWICH TOWN 3

Posted on: Tue 01 Jun 2010

A fantastic strike by 16-year-old Connor Wickham late in the first half put Ipswich Town on the way to victory in a pre-season friendly at Griffin Park.

League One Brentford matched their Championship opponents for much of the evening and on a night that produced three fine strikes the best of the evening won the match.

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The teenage Wickham, Ipswich's youngest ever player, turned on the edge of the box with six first half minutes remaining and lashed a shot past Lewis Price from 17 yards, the ball travelling so fast it hit the back of the net within the blink of an eye.

The Bees will feel they deserved a share of the spoils after they equalised an early Ipswich goal but they could not get themselves ahead, or equalise in the second half.

And when former Brentford loanee Jordan Rhodes headed in a third late on the game was over.

The game, particularly the first half, was a good spectacle and the paying spectators got their money's worth.

The visitors took the lead in the sixth minute with a well-worked goal - Wickham flicked the ball on to Jon Stead and he fed the marauding Lee Martin who came in off the left flank to slot home.

After that early setback Brentford grew in confidence, Ben Strevens forced a low save from Shane Supple with a powerful header and sliced an effort wide before Sam Saunders shot over.

Stead had a shot blocked, David Wright lashed an effort over and Martin shot over before Brentford pulled level.

Myles Weston was the architect with a brilliant turn on the left hand side; he skipped past Gareth McAuley and cut the ball back to Strevens who slotted home from close range.

Jon Walters volleyed just wide at the other end and then had a looping header saved before Sam Wood sliced a shot wide for the hosts from long range.

Wickham scored moments later but Brentford fought back - Wood went close with a volley from the edge of the box and Mark Phillips looped a header over while Martin forced Price into a save at the other end.

Strevens could have levelled things in the closing seconds of the half when he met a curling Saunders cross but he turned it over the bar from close range.

The Bees came out after half time and set about trying to level things up - Alan Bennett headed a Wood corner wide, David Hunt had a shot blocked by substitute goalkeeper Richard Wright and the former England stopper denied Saunders with a fine save moments later.

Once the substitutions started on the hour mark the flow went out of the game and there were fewer openings.

Rhodes headed wide for Ipswich and Bennett did likewise at the other end before Saunders fired a free kick over.

Owen Garvan had a shot blocked for the visitors and then shot over before Rhodes sealed the game with a header from a short free kick.

Nathan Elder had a header cleared off the line in the closing minutes but Brentford couldn't find a second goal and fell to a pre-season defeat.

Brentford: Price (sub Holloway 78 mins); Foster (sub Ferrell 78 mins), Phillips (sub Osborne 67 mins), Bennett (sub Legge 78 mins), Dickson (sub Elder 67 mins); Saunders (sub Williams 78 mins), Hunt (sub Bean 67 mins), O'Connor, Wood; Strevens (sub Ademola 78 mins), Weston (sub Blake 78 mins)

Ipswich Town: Supple (sub R. Wright h/t); D. Wright, McAuley (sub Bruce h/t), Smith (sub Balkestein h/t), Delaney; Walters, Trotter (sub Shumulikoski 59 mins), Norris (sub Garvan 59 mins) Martin; Stead (sub Lisbie 59 mins), Wickham (sub Rhodes 59 mins)

Written by Chris Wickham

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