Bees profit from set-pieces
A missed penalty and a late missed header left Carlisle with nothing to show from a game in which they looked the better side for long spells, and a lack of concentration at two set-pieces proved costly with Brentford picking up their third win of the month as they mount an assault on a top-six place.
The Cumbrians looked bright as they took the game to their hosts but Harry Forrester had the first effort of the day when he spun to meet a long throw from Logan. He allowed it run across his body and his volley had power as it bent comfortably wide.
Carlisle responded with a quick break and Berrett had to be stopped as he mad his way into the box with his sole intention to unleash a shot.
Brentford preferred the long ball option and the United defence sat deeper to deal with it as the home side struggled to find a way through.
A flowing build up on the right flank for United created space for Noble and he took a touch before sweeping a decent effort just over the bar.
Then patient work from Higginbotham brought a shooting opportunity as he wound his way into the area. Moore showed good hands to pluck it out of the air.
But a better spell for the Bees brought a rushed volley for Douglas when he stole a yard in the box. He stretched for the volley and scooped it over the bar.
He made no mistake with his next connection though when he arrived late in the box to meet a wonderful deep corner delivery from Forrester. His technique was perfect as he drilled it across the face of goal and into the bottom corner.
United responded well and they were back on level terms within six minutes when Higginbotham showed purpose on the left wing. His pass allowed Joe Garner to take control and shift position to make it seven goals in twelve games with a blistering strike past the stranded Simon Moore.
The game stayed tight but teenager Brad Potts, called up to the England U19 squad for next week’s friendly against Finland, showed why he has been catching the eye when Noble rolled the ball into his path. A thundering 30-yard shot was seen late by Moore and the surprised stopper did well to parry it as it angled towards his top corner.
Joe Garner shot wide as United kept the pressure on and it was a confident visiting side which made its way to the dressing room for the half time team talk.
Clayton Donaldson almost drew first blood after the break when he ghosted his way to the edge of the area. A shot on the turn had Collin beaten but it whistled past the angle of post and bar.
The same man should have done better moments later when a Forrester corner bent away from Collin. The big striker rose highest but his penalty spot header whipped wide of the mark.
The home pressure cranked up a few more notches with Forshaw twice going close with shots which had to be deflected wide. Collin then had to parry a crunching drive from Forrester as the fans sensed their team were edging on top.
The dominance was finally made to tell when Donaldson flicked on another good corner ball from Forrester. Paul Hayes was unmarked and his scuffed volley wrong-footed Collin as it bounced over the line.
The Bees were buzzing and a quick exchange of passes set Donaldson free on the edge of the area. Chantler was superb as he dived in to make a vital block.
A rare foray forward midway through the half almost brought an equaliser when a Berrett corner fell invitingly for Garner. His initial effort was blocked and the Edwards follow up shaved the upright as he tried his luck with a swing of his boot.
A foul by Craig on Symington inside the box gave Garner the chance to level things once more but Moore guessed the right way and pushed the well-struck spot kick away from the danger area.
Lady luck deserted United for the last time just before the whistle blew when Potts nodded a Murphy free kick into the mix. Substitute Mark Beck dived to get there but it looped up off the top of his head and landed harmlessly on the roof of the net.
“I feel gutted for the lads because they have worked really hard,” manager Greg Abbott said. “We looked the better side in the first half and we’re always going to be disappointed when we concede goals from set pieces. We can’t blame anyone for a penalty miss, that could happen to any player, and the fact is that Joe Garner has been really important to us with his goals.
“We started well and we looked the better side, and we finished it strongly as well. The two goals they have scored have come from a little bit of laziness in our defending in set-piece situations. The players involved know who they should have been marking, but we have still gone on to create really good chances and if we had perhaps been a little bit more clinical we would even be looking at three points."
Brentford - Douglas (20), Hayes (61)
United - Garner (26)
Brentford - Donaldson (72)
Brentford - Moore, Forshaw (Saunders 87), Craig, Dean, Douglas, Donaldson, Logan, Forrester (Barron 84), Diagouraga, Hayes, Bidwell. Subs - Lee, Dallas, Oyeleke, German, Pierre.
Carlisle United - Collin, Simek, Edwards, Murphy, Chantler, Potts, Noble (Welsh 81), Berrett, McGovern (Symington 67), Garner, Higginbotham (Beck 81). Subs - Gillespie, Cadamarteri, Todd, McGinty.
Referee - Mr Andy Davies
Attendance - 6,763 (350 away fans)