Brentford 1 - 0 Pool
Attendance: Brentford 1 - 0 Pool
Blackpool started the season in the worst possible fashion losing 1-0 in the capital despite being the better team at Griffin Park this afternoon.
Grayson named his first eleven of the season from a squad of nineteen, Marcus Bean made that squad but was deemed unfit with a knee problem which might see the midfielder miss the Nottingham Forrest game on Tuesday night.
A week ago Grayson named what we thought was his strongest eleven against Livingston but he made a few changes to that team for the season opener. Evans made his debut in goal, Joseph in at right back, Tierney on the left of defence. Barker and Jackson made up the brand new central defender partnership.
In midfield Forbes started on the right, Prendergast got the nod on the left, Southern and Fox slotted into the middle. Parker and Vernon started upfront.
The bench looked strong with Coid, Hoolahan, Graham, Evatt and Jones covering all positions if substations were required.
Pool started brightly and within ten minutes could have taken an early lead, Michael Jackson heading over a Rory Prendergast cross.
On 20 minutes Pool had two glorious chances to get that all important first goal, Southern headed against the inside of the post from a free kick and had to watch as the ball agonisingly rolled along the goal line.
Moments later Vernon found himself onside and clean through on goal, but before he could dispatch a shot the covering defender managed to get back and take the ball of the former Oldham player.
Scott Vernon had an even better chance late on in the half, he found himself again clean through. This time he was able to get a shot away but Masters pulled off a great save to deny Vernon his first goal of the season.
A positive first half, Pool creating numerous chances and putting their mark on the game.
Grayson must have been happy at half time and made no chances at the break.
Pool continued to press, Adrian Forbes ended a surging run with a shot which was well saved by Masters who had a good afternoon in the Bee`s goal.
But is was the Bees who had the better chance to take the lead, a overhead kick fell to substitute Gavin Tomlin who lobbed his shot over.
Grayson made his first change of the afternoon, new loanee Danny Graham replaced Vernon.
With the scored still at 0-0 Brentford went on the search for a winner, Jackson blocked a goal bound shot from Willock. Then Oli Skulason, who hasn`t played a competitive match in almost a year slotted in the only goal of the afternoon in a goal mouth scramble.
Grayson was forced into his second change of the match when Paul Tierney limped off, Coid replaced him.
Brentford went on the search for another goal to secure there lead. With a succession of corners which brought half chances.
Wes Hoolahan replaced Prendergast for his first taste of English league football, but Hoolahan couldn`t help as the game petered out to a 1-0 home win.
Although a bad result Grayson will take positives out of the match with Pool dominating for the majority of the match, creating but not taking chances. A finisher is required, can one be found by Tuesday night? Lets hope so.
Brentford: Masters, O'Connor, Frampton, Heywood, Charles, Brooker (Tillen 63), Skulason, Pinault, Rhodes, Willock, Kuffour (Tomlin 52).
Subs Not Used: Moore, Osborne, Ide.
Booked: Charles, Brooker.
Goals: Skulason 74.
Blackpool: Evans, Joseph, Barker, Jackson, Tierney (Coid 75), Forbes, Southern, Fox, Prendergast (Hoolahan 80), Vernon (Graham 68), Parker.
Subs Not Used: Jones, Evatt.
Booked: Prendergast, Fox.