Donaldson off the mark as Bees win

Exeter 1 Brentford 2

Clayton Donaldson netted his first goal for Brentford as they bounced back in style from their weekend defeat.

Uwe Rosler’s side, beaten at Sheffield United on Saturday, were under pressure for much of this game but were two up at the interval and survived a second-half Exeter City fightback.

An 18th-minute own goal by James Dunne put them ahead before Donaldson, their summer signing from Crewe, headed home.

Substitute Guillem Bauza halved their lead with a penalty midway through the second-half, but the Bees would not be denied.

Injury-hit Exeter looked the more dangerous team before Dunne flicked Jonathan Douglas’ free-kick past his own goalkeeper and into the net.

Former Brentford loanee Nicholas Bignal had missed a great chance to give the Grecians an early lead.

The striker, who is on loan at St James Park from Reading, failed to score during a four-month spell in west London last season.

And he was found wanting again when he blazed over after finding himself through on goal.

That miss proved costly but even after going behind against the run of play, Exeter continued to threaten and Brentford defender Leon Legge had to produce a fine last-ditch challenge to thwart Chris Shephard.

Brentford offer plenty of attacking menace of their own – so much so that Charlie MacDonald was unable to secure even a place on the bench.

The switching of wingers Sam Saunders and Niall McGinn caused the home side a constant headache, and the second goal came when McGinn cut in from the left and delivered a crisp right-footed cross for Donaldson to score.

To their credit, City did not give up and Bauza’s half-time introduction gave them a new lease of life.

Bauza shot narrowly wide less than a minute after the restart, before Brentford goalkeeper Richard Lee did superbly to tip over a header from Troy Archibald-Henville.

City were handed a lifeline when Legge fouled Tom Nichols in the box and Bauza scored with the resulting spot-kick.

It meant Brentford had to endure a nervy finish, with Scott Goldbourne and Shephard both firing wide as Exeter tried in vain to find an equaliser.