Some relief for Brentford as they share meagre spoils with Eagles again
Brentford (0) 0
Crystal Palace (0) 0
Brentford picked up a useful point and stopped the rot after playing out their second 0-0 stalemate of the season against the Eagles.
After a run of five straight league defeats it felt like an important draw.
Patrick Vieira’s men won the possession count but did not test David Raya that much. Conor Gallagher was not quite able to get into the sort of telling attacking positions he gets into at Selhurst.
Arguably, the Bees looked the more threatening in the final third in the first half – although in truth neither side made much of a case for deserving three points.
In the end, it is a day that may be remembered more for the pre-match introduction to fans of Christian Eriksen – draped in a Brentford scarf as he walked alone to the centre circle and waved to all four corners.
He thinks he might be in contention for being involved in the next home game against Newcastle at the end of the month.
The other good vibe came from the return of Josh Dasilva as a second half sub, but apart from that, it was a case of small pickings.
The hosts’ best moments came in the first half. A Mathias Jensen cross from the right was helped on by Bryan Mbeumo for the overlapping Rico Henry to hammer at goal – only for Joachim Andersen to get in the way with an important block.
Marc Guehi was lucky to get away with handling a cross in the next attack but a shove from behind on him by Christian Norgaard was the verdict of ref Simon Hooper.
Then, Sergi Canos slipped a ball into the inside right channel for Mbeumo but Vicente Guaita was out quickly to win the duel, then Canos and Jensen combined down the right and it need Joel Ward’s outstretched leg to clear the danger.
Palace took half an hour before getting a shot at goal. Norgaard gave the ball away in midfield and Odsonne Edouard found a supporting Jordan Ayew in space, but the striker skewed a good chance horribly wide.
Wilfried Zaha did his usual cutting inside bit to rifle at goal – his angled ping from the right edge of David Raya’s box was comfortably held by the keeper. The Ivorian winger spent a lot of time on the deck and complaining to officials. It was all too familiar. Michael Olise came on but did not really affect the game.
Dasilva was bright in his first home match of the season and warmed the cockles. His comeback from a long injury lay-off at Everton and Man City in the past week has given boss Thomas Frank a boost and more options.
His return was greeted with understandable enthusiasm from home fans. His flair has been missed.
But the Bees struggled to create significant chances, though Guaita did have to be alert to keep out a header from Pontus Jansson.
Raya saved a late effort from Andersen but the game petered out to become the firm ‘last on Match of the Day’ contender it had often promised to be.
Bees: (3-5-2) Raya – Ajer, Jansson, Pinnock – Canos (Baptiste 87), Janelt (Dasilva 61), Norgaard, Jensen, Henry – Mbeumo, Wissa (Ghoddos 82). Subs not used: Fernandez, Lossl, Onyeka, Sorensen, Roerslev, Stevens
Eagles: (4-3-3) Guaita – Ward, Andersen, Guehi, Mitchell – Gallagher, Hughes (McArthur 66), Schlupp – J Ayew (Olise 78), Edouard (Mateta 72), Zaha. Subs not used: Butland, Milivojevic, Tomkins, Eze, Clyne, Benteke