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2017/18 English League Championship, 2017/2018 English League Championship
  • Ollie Watkins (74' PEN)
  • Neal Maupay (84')

Neal Maupay inspires Brentford to win at Birmingham

Substitute Neal Maupay inspired Brentford to a deserved 2-0 win at Birmingham.
The striker came off the bench to win a penalty and score in the final 16 minutes as the Bees extended their unbeaten Sky Bet Championship run to eight games.
Ollie Watkins netted the spot-kick after Maupay was brought down before the Frenchman secured the win.
The Bees, who moved up to 15th, looked like being denied by goalkeeper Tomasz Kuszczak after he twice thwarted Lasse Vibe and Watkins at St Andrew's.
Maikel Kieftenbeld's rocket hit a post in the first half but Birmingham were second best and remain 21st, just two points above the relegation zone.
Birmingham signed Maxime Collin, Harlee Dean and B£6million record buy Jota from Brentford in the summer but Collin was carried off after just seven minutes after going down when unchallenged.
The stoppage contributed to a slow start and it took until the 20th minute for Vibe to go close but he was denied by Kuszczak's smart stop.
Brentford were more comfortable in possession and continued to probe for an opener but their patient approach struggled to create clear chances.
Watkins fired wide eight minutes before the break before lacklustre Birmingham almost stunned the visitors when Kieftenbeld rattled the post from 35 yards.
Brentford survived again ahead of half-time when Daniel Bentley spilled David Cotterill's free-kick and Che Adams was unable to pounce on the rebound.
But they were brief threats from the hosts as the visitors continued to press after the break and Kuszczak denied Vibe after 58 minutes when the striker shrugged off Marc Roberts.
Kuszczak then came to the rescue again when he turned Watkins' effort wide but the former Manchester United goalkeeper was unable to stop Watkins' seventh goal of the season with 16 minutes left.
Michael Morrison failed to deal with a bouncing ball and fouled Maupay, who had been on for just four minutes, in the area allowing Watkins to net the resulting spot-kick.
Maupay then struck when he drilled in low from 15 yards with six minutes left before Bentley's fine late save denied Roberts a consolation.

English League Championship Standings

POS Team GP GD PTS
1 Wolverhampton Wanderers 33 +33 73
2 Cardiff City 33 +22 64
3 Aston Villa 33 +19 60
4 Derby County 33 +22 59
5 Fulham 33 +18 56
6 Bristol City 33 +9 54
7 Sheffield United 33 +7 52
8 Middlesbrough 33 +12 51
9 Preston North End 33 +8 51
10 Brentford 33 +10 50
11 Leeds United 33 +3 46
12 Norwich City 33 -3 46
13 Millwall 33 +4 45
14 Ipswich Town 33 +1 45
15 Queens Park Rangers 33 -10 39
16 Sheffield Wednesday 33 -5 37
17 Nottingham Forest 33 -15 37
18 Reading 32 -7 33
19 Bolton Wanderers 33 -22 33
20 Hull City 33 -6 32
21 Birmingham City 33 -27 30
22 Burton Albion 33 -33 29
23 Barnsley 32 -16 28
24 Sunderland 33 -24 26

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