Brentford ease past Wigan to climb into top half of Championship
Brentford moved into the top half of the Sky Bet Championship, and within touching distance of the top six, after a straightforward 3-0 victory at struggling Wigan.
Bryan Mbeumo fired the bees in front just five minutes into the match before second-half strikes from Kamo Mokotjo and Josh Dasilva made sure of the win.
Both sides finished the contest with 10 men, with Cedric Kipre seeing red for the home side and Julian Jeanvier taking an early bath for Brentford.
Wigan were out of sorts right from the off, with Kieffer Moore playing a 70-yard ball from deep inside Brentford territory towards his own goal and goalkeeper David Marshall only just preventing the ball going out for a corner.
But the respite was only temporary, with the Bees taking the lead with only five minutes gone.
Dasilva supplied the corner from the left-hand side, which Christian Norgaard was able to meet, unmarked, from six yards out. Marshall made the initial save but Norgaard steered the rebound back to Mbeumo, who stabbed home from close range.
Wigan’s first sight of goal came from Moore on the 25-minute mark but it drifted wide of the far post with David Raya untroubled.
Jamal Lowe thought he was in for Wigan just before the half-time whistle, lobbing the ball over Raya and towards the empty net. However, Pontus Jansson somehow got back to volley the ball up against the bar and off the line – with only the offside flag denying him the clearance of the season.
Brentford would have been pleased with the way they had been able to largely control the ball and keep Wigan at arm’s length, and the home side will clearly have been subject to some harsh words from manager Paul Cook at the interval.
Wigan came out for the second period with a spring in their step and Michael Jacobs had a low shot saved by Raya at full stretch.
The hosts went for it on the hour mark with a double change, throwing on Josh Windass and England Under-18 star Joe Gelhardt for Jacobs and former Bee Lewis Macleod.
But almost immediately, a tough task became tougher when Brentford doubled their advantage with 20 minutes to play.
Marshall did well to claw out a cross from Dasilva, but Mokotjo was on hand to rifle home from 15 yards.
And any chance Wigan had of pulling it back disappeared within three minutes when Kipre was dismissed for a second bookable offence, taking down Ollie Watkins in full flight.
The visitors then added salt to Wigan wounds with a glorious third goal with seven minutes to go, with Dasilva sending a magnificent strike into the top corner from 20 yards.
Wigan’s misery was compounded in the six added minutes when Gelhardt had to be carried off on a stretcher having taken a nasty blow to the head.
In the melee that followed, Brentford’s Jeanvier was sent off, with Williams of Wigan receiving a yellow card.