Brentford 1-1 Swansea: Andre Ayew cancels out Ivan Toney’s opener but has last gasp header ruled out for offside as Swans stay second
- Andre Ayew cancelled out Ivan Toney’s opener to earn a point for Swansea
- Toney scored his tenth goal in eight games to give the home side a first half lead
- Ayew met Matt Grimes’ low cross to pull the Swans level with ten minutes to play
- The striker thought he had won it but saw a late goal ruled out for offside
With 13 minutes remaining, Steve Cooper’s Swansea were on course to leave here with nothing. For a moment after Andre Ayew headed home a last gasp free-kick, they thought they had nicked all three.
Then the assistant raised his flag, the referee blew for full-time and both sides were made to settle for one apiece.
This carried neither the significance, nor the emotional charge, of Swansea’s last visit to West London. And yet it sparked a similar dose of drama and tension after a late flurry which somehow ended in honours even.
Andre Ayew scored in the 77th minute to earn a point for Swansea at Brentford on Tuesday
The striker met Matt Grimes’ low cross to finish beyond Brentford goalkeeper David Raya
Ayew thought he’d won it in the final stages but had has last gasp header ruled out for offside
Swansea were the victims when Thomas Frank’s side capped their long goodbye to Griffin Park with a win that took them to last season’s play-off final.
That night, it was Frank’s BMW forward line that did the damage. This time round, in new surrounds, it seemed Brentford’s new fulcrum would make the difference.
Ivan Toney netted his 10th goal in eight games to give Brentford a first-half lead. But Swansea would not lie down and they got their reward for a fine performance when Ayew turned home Matt Grimes’ low cross.
Buoyed by Ayew’s recent form, Cooper said: ‘He’s doing the business for us at the moment, scoring goals and I’ve never seen him so motivated to do well.’
Ivan Toney netted from close range to give Brentford the lead mid way through the first half
Toney now has ten goals in eight games since joining the club from Peterborough in August
Brentford (4-3-3): Raya; Dalsgaard; Goode; Pinnock; Henry; Marcondes (Janelt 69); Jensen; Dasilva; Mbeumo (Forss 84); Toney; Ghoddos (Canos 62)
Subs not used: Thompson; Fosu; Daniels; Stevens
Booked: Dalsgaard; Marcondes; Forss
Scoreres: Toney (36)
Swansea (3-4-1-2): Woodman; Naughton; Bennett; Guehi; Roberts; Fulton (Grimes 60); Smith; Bidwell; Dhanda (Palmer 61); Ayew; Lowe (Gyokeres 69)
Subs not used: Manning; Benda; Routledge; Latibeaudiere
Scorers: Ayew (77)
Both sides had chances to win it – Ethan Pinnock missed a glorious free header and there was still time for Ayew’s final heartbreak.
Cooper insisted this was not about revenge for that night at Griffin Park. But scars linger and it didn’t take much for tempers to boil on this first trip to pastures new.
Ultimately, he reflected: ‘We’re disappointed not to win. We were miles the better team, we created all the clear-cut chances… we were excellent.
Thomas Frank added: ‘I think 1-1 is a fair result overall… It’s annoying because we know there are so many tight games in the Championship… the performance was average.’
In a fractious first half, the two benches exchanged words after Emiliano Marcondes’ appeals for a Brentford penalty were waved away. And the opening goal did little to sooth the tension.
After Toney swept home Mathias Jensen’s low cross, Swansea keeper Freddie Woodman shared handbags with Saman Ghoddos. No wonder the visitors were frustrated – Swansea had created the better chances to that point. David Raya denied Kyle Naughton’s fiercely struck shot before Andre Ayew’s left-food effort forced another fine save. Earlier, Brentford centre back Charlie Goode was lucky to escape punishment after he seemed to pull down Jamal Lowe as the striker raced through on goal.
Lowe was again denied after the break, when his curling shot from distance was well met by Raya.
It didn’t take much for tempers to boil over following the game between the two last season
Thomas Frank’s side beat the Swans to book their place in the play-off final last season
From there, Brentford seemed to have stemmed the tide. They even found the net when Sergi Canos turned home Toney’s cross 18 minutes from time. But the goal was ruled out for a foul in the build-up.
That could have killed the drama.
In the end it was just the start. Brentford defender Henrik Dalsgaard missed a glorious chance, heading over when in acres of space, shortly before Ayew’s equaliser.
There was still time for more handbags, more goals and more chances to come. And go.