Brentford 1 Bristol City 1: McCombe rues missed chance

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The Independent Football

Jamie McCombe's first club, Scunthorpe United, had opened the door earlier on Saturday afternoon, when their unexpected destruction of the leaders, Nottingham Forest, gave Bristol City the chance to go top of League One.

Then McCombe himself, who joined City in the summer, was also the Robins goalscorer. Unfortunately for the tall centre-half, the perfect afternoon was not to be and with a third of the game left he leaned too heavily on Clyde Wijnhard. The diminutive former Leeds striker was eight yards out and fell under the contact, but left Kevin O'Connor to take the penalty and keep City in second, two points shy of Forest.

Not that McCombe, 23, was convinced by the decision. "I don't think it was a penalty. I don't know how he's got that side of me but he was holding me off so I leaned over and just headed the ball. Maybe it was clever play from him."

Gary Johnson, formerly the Latvia and Yeovil manager, is the man in charge of City these days and his son, Lee, was the best player on the pitch. With licence to roam in midfield and direct play, he showed how comfortable he was on the ball. Unfortunately, that quality was not matched by his team-mates up front, where Phil Jevons, once of Everton, and Enoch Showunmi, rarely showed the quality needed even at this level to threaten Brentford's back four.

Goals: McCombe (41) 0-1; O'Connor (68) 1-1.

Brentford (4-4-2): Nelson; O'Connor, Heywood, Griffiths, Frampton; Brooker (Peters, 81), Pinault, Skulason, Rhodes (Tillen, 56); Wijnhard (Moore, 90), Kuffour. Substitutes not used: Masters, Mousinho.

Bristol City (4-4-2): Basso; Orr, Keogh, McCombe, McAllister; Russell (Skuse, 72), Johnson (Murray, 83), Brown, Myrie-Williams (Noble, 72); Jevons, Showunmi. Substitutes not used: Woodman, Federici.

Referee: D Whitestone (Northamptonshire).

Booked: Brentford Griffiths; Bristol City McCombe.

Man of the match: Johnson.

Attendance: 6,740.