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BRENTFORD 2 CRYSTAL PALACE 2

Posted on: Tue 01 Jun 2010

Brentford came within 11 minutes of picking up the scalp of Championship outfit Crystal Palace in their latest pre-season friendly.

Substitute Jose Fonte scored a late leveller for the visitors to deny the home side the win.

The Bees fell behind midway through the first period but fought back, levelled through a Shaun Derry own goal on the half hour and grew in confidence.

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The League One side dominated after the break and deserved the lead given to them by Myles Weston just before the hour mark.

But they couldn't hold on and Fonte notched from a free kick with time ticking away.

Weston had a header saved early on and Derry had shot deflected wide but there were few early chances.

It took 20 minutes for the game to get into a rhythm and once it did it was a lively contest.

Patrick McCarthy almost deflected aMarcus Bean cross past his own goalkeeper, Sam Saunders shot over and Sam Wood toe-poked wide after a nice move involving the left sided man, Ryan Blake and Kevin O'Connor.

It was slightly against the run of play when Palace took the lead - Darren Ambrose let fly with a free kick 35 yards out, it took a wicked deflected and flew past the wrong-footed Lewis Price.

Neil Danns headed wide as Palace got on top but they weren't in the ascendency for long, and Brentford were soon level.

Derry needlessly gave away a corner by heading out of play when unchallenged and from Wood's cross McCarthy headed towards his own goal it hit Derry and flew in.

Victor Moses almost restored Palace's advantage but his effort from a low Freddie Sears cross was deflected wide and Sears himself could have scored when he latched onto an Alan Lee flick but could not get it past Price.

After the break Brentford turned the screw and were by far the better team.

Weston had a curling left foot effort saved and Ben Strevens fired narrowly over from 25 yards before the two combined for The Bees' second.

Mark Phillips played a ball forward to Strevens who found Weston with a nice lay off - the nippy forward moved across the edge of the penalty area and unleashed a low shot from 18 yards which flew past Julian Speroni.

Palace tried to fight back but were limited to half chances - Sears shot straight at Price from distance and the Bees' keeper also held a powerful Moses shot.

Saunders missed the target for Brentford with a couple of long range efforts before Blake made a fine late tackle to prevent Sean Scannell reaching an Alessane N'Diaye nod down.

As it looked like Palace had run out of ideas a Nick Carle free kick found Fonte in behind the defence six yards out and he had no trouble slotting home.

Brentford still had chances to win it - Saunders shot wide and Karleigh Osborne flicked a Wood free kick just past the post.

But the winner wouldn't come and Brentford had to settle for having the better of the draw.

Brentford: Price; Foster, Osborne, Phillips, Blake; Saunders, O'Connor, Bean, Wood; Weston (sub Williams 77 mins), Strevens

Crystal Palace: Speroni; Butterfield (sub Hill h/t), McCarthy (sub Fonte 65 mins), Lawrence, Clyne; Ambrose (sub Hills 77 mins), Danns (sub Carle 65 mins), Derry (sub Ertl 65 mins), Moses (sub Scannell 65 mins); Sears, Lee (sub N'Diaye h/t)

Written by Chris Wickham

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