Brentford recovered from conceding inside three minutes against Bristol City to extend their unbeaten Championship run to 19 games and move up to second.
The Robins, who have now lost six away games in a row, led when Zak Vyner guided home Jack Hunt’s inswinging free-kick at the back post, but Seri Canos levelled when he followed up after keeper Daniel Bentley could only parry Tariqe Fosu’s strike.
Ivan Toney put the Bees ahead from Fosu’s cross after the break and, with the hosts dominant, Saman Ghoddos made it 3-1 when he scored after his initial shot crashed back off the woodwork.
A tidy Nahki Wells strike gave City hope of an unlikely draw, but the Bees held on to move a point above Swansea City – who drop to third – and four points behind leaders Norwich City, but with a game in hand.
Bristol City’s inconsistency, which has now brought nine defeats and seven wins in their past 16 league and cup games, was clear as they faded after a bright start against a Bees side who were increasingly impressive.
The west Londoners remained unflustered after Vyner’s shock opener, with Ethan Pinnock heading just wide and Canos twice going close before he did equalise after a mistake from Alfie Mawson.
Toney’s 20th goal of the season put Brentford in front when he swept the ball in from eight yards after great work by the excellent Fosu.
Fosu was also the creator for the decisive third goal when a powerful run ended with him teeing up Ghoddos, whose shot hit the underside of the bar but rebounded kindly to allow him to hook the ball home.
Wells rounded keeper David Raya to make it 3-2 in the closing moments, but the Bees held on without any further alarms.
Brentford boss Thomas Frank:
“We know on our day we play decent football but we now have the foundations of every top team – a top attitude. We are confident but humble because we know there is a big task ahead of us.
“We were missing key players but Sergi Canos, Tariqe Fosu and Saman Ghoddos all stepped up. We run, fight and play for each other and that leads to a good performance every single time. Then it’s down to the fine margins.
“We are always together and we have desire and that’s important in a league that is relentless. We look only to the next game against Middlesbrough who have a way of playing that makes it difficult for you.”
Bristol City head coach Dean Holden told BBC Radio Bristol:
“We’re disappointed to lose. I thought we started excellently and we looked really solid in that shape. We looked dangerous but just weren’t able to find that cutting edge or final pass.
“We got a bit too wide open. Ivan Toney’s not had a lot to feed off all night but it shows how clinical he is – he gets one chance and puts it away.
“It was a much better performance than Saturday, we competed tonight. We just lost to a team who, on the night, were better than us.”
- 29Bech Sørensen
- 3HenrySubstituted forReidat 86′minutes
- 20GhoddosSubstituted forZamburekat 79′minutes
- 24Fosu-HenrySubstituted forForssat 79′minutes
- 17ToneySubstituted forRasmussenat 88′minutes
- 2HuntSubstituted forBakinsonat 80′minutes
- 4NagySubstituted forPalmerat 72′minutes
- 42MassengoSubstituted forWellsat 72′minutes
- 35EdwardsSubstituted forPatersonat 72′minutes
- Tim Robinson
Match ends, Brentford 3, Bristol City 2.
Second Half ends, Brentford 3, Bristol City 2.
Winston Reid (Brentford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Nahki Wells (Bristol City).
Foul by Mads Rasmussen (Brentford).
Adrian Mariappa (Bristol City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Henrik Dalsgaard (Brentford) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Foul by Nahki Wells (Bristol City).
Goal! Brentford 3, Bristol City 2. Nahki Wells (Bristol City) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Tyreeq Bakinson.
Substitution, Brentford. Mads Rasmussen replaces Ivan Toney.
Sergi Canós (Brentford) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Zak Vyner (Bristol City).
Attempt saved. Mathias Jensen (Brentford) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top left corner.
Substitution, Brentford. Winston Reid replaces Rico Henry.
Ivan Toney (Brentford) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Tomas Kalas (Bristol City).
Attempt missed. Tyreeq Bakinson (Bristol City) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Alfie Mawson following a set piece situation.
Foul by Ivan Toney (Brentford).
Tomas Kalas (Bristol City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Substitution, Bristol City. Tyreeq Bakinson replaces Jack Hunt.