An air of anticipation accompanied what looked like over 2,000 expectant Bees to the Ricoh Arena.
Surely recent performances would reap rewards. Much as they have the majority of games of late Uwe’s promotion chasing team started on the front foot, looking lively and dangerous.
Lining up in a 4-5-1 formation, the more attack minded midfielders pushing up to support Clayton created openings and half chances for the first 25 minutes with little in way of reply from the home side.
However, if it was simply and clear cut it wouldn’t be Brentford and so it proved again when in their first attack, a Coventry header back across goal was cleared off the line to the edge of the area and a follow up shot blocked.
Almost falling behind against the run of play was a wake-up call not to take things for granted. Harry started pulling strings and making things happen, no more so than when the midfield whiz kid picked up a ball on the touch line ran at a couple of sky blue shirts before lofting a pass to the talismanic Clayton who, seeing the home keeper rushing out, attempted an audacious lob which dropped agonisingly wide.
With half time looming large, a hopefully long punt into the box, lead to Harlee Dean dragging down an on rushing Coventry attacker and giving the referee no choice but to point to the spot. Ensuing penalty was calmly dispatched passed Simon, and once again we were behind at the break having bossed a half.
In a move that shows the managers willingness to make difficult decisions Dougie was subbed at the start of the second period to be replaced by Dave and it was to prove an inspired switch.
In the second minute of the half a flowing midfield move lead to Clayton bombing into the box, attempting to set up Forshaw for a shot, only to see blocked and roll invitingly into the path of the on rushing Forrester who dispatched an equaliser into the net prompting pandemonium and relief in equal measure in the away end.
Immediately after getting back on terms The Bees could and maybe should have taken a lead. Clayton again and Harlee both went for a leader which ended in a collision between Dean and the home keeper.
In a concerning incident the big central defender stayed down for several minutes and required a bandage on his head and ear. Upon coming back into the fray Harlee didn’t seem to be feeling the effects as he continued to give a polished performance, if the 11 on the pitch for the remaining fixtures can show as much passion and will as Dean did to soldier on seasons aims won’t be far away.
As the clock ticked over into stoppage time, the golden chance presented itself to Clayton, unfortunately on this occasion his efforts over 90 plus minutes seemed to have taken its toll as Clayton uncharacteristically blazed over from point blank range under pressure from defenders and keeper.
With that the game finished and the spoils were shared. A good point gained or 2 dropped, only time will tell.
We move on to Crewe, 5 games to go, 2 in hand, win both and who knows what could happen. One thing is for sure, this race looks like going down to the wire.
By Chris Horricks