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Brentford set up Glovers final

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06 May 2013 20:17:09

Brentford set up Glovers final

Brentford survived more last-minute agony to secure a trip to Wembley after beating Swindon on penalties following a dramatic 3-3 draw.

Just nine days after Marcello Trotta missed the injury-time penalty which would have sent the Bees into the npower Championship automatically, it was a case of deja vu for the Griffin Park faithful. This time their side were seconds from clinching a place in the play-off final when Aden Flint headed the equaliser for Swindon, five minutes into stoppage time.

A rollercoaster match then went to penalties but this time the story went in Brentford's favour - Miles Storey missing Swindon's fourth spot-kick. That left Adam Forshaw to step up and score the winning spot-kick and send the Bees to Wembley, where they will face Yeovil a week on Sunday for a place in the Championship.

Certainly nobody leaves a Brentford game early these days - Kevin O'Connor's injury-time penalty had secured a 1-1 draw in the first leg at the County Ground just 48 hours earlier. That meant the momentum was with Brentford and they were gifted a 24th-minute lead when Harry Forrester whipped in a corner and Adam Rooney diverted the ball past his own keeper.

Brentford sensed they could kill Swindon off in the first half and recalled striker Trotta thumped a shot against a post. They got their second in the 40th minute when Clayton Donaldson collected the ball on the edge of the Swindon area and slotted a low drive past Wes Foderingham and into the corner of the net.

But Swindon were thrown a lifeline before the interval when Tom Adeyemi and Toumani Diagouraga got themselves into an almighty muddle on the halfway line. Town broke clear through Gary Roberts, and when his shot was blocked, Rooney was on hand to tuck in the rebound.

However, Roberts suffered brain freeze moments after the restart when his sloppy pass on the halfway line sent Donaldson racing towards goal before coolly dinking the ball over Foderingham to restore Brentford's two-goal advantage.

Yet Swindon refused to go away quietly and in the 57th minute, when Brentford failed to clear Raffaele De Vita's corner, Joe Devera swept the loose ball high into the net.

Bees substitute Sam Saunders could have wrapped up victory but his curler clipped the crossbar, and instead, five minutes into stoppage time, Flint nodded in Roberts' corner to stun the hosts again and take the tie into extra time.

Swindon were reduced to 10 men when Nathan Byrne was shown a second yellow for deliberate handball and Foderingham twice saved from Donaldson to take the tie to penalties. But the Bees kept their nerve in the shoot-out and Forshaw's effort sparked a pitch invasion and wild scenes of celebration, relief and disbelief.


PA

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