Brentford crash four past Reading
Ruthless Brentford moved into fourth place in the Sky Bet Championship with an emphatic 4-1 demolition of in-form Reading.
Goals from Josh Clarke, Lasse Vibe, Maxime Colin and Scott Hogan put Jaap Stam's side to the sword.
Brentford were two up at the break and stretched their lead on 58 minutes before Yann Kermogant gave the Royals brief hope from the penalty spot five minutes later.
But leading scorer Hogan's seventh goal of the season put the seal on a scintillating free-passing display that saw Reading chasing shadows for long spells.
Brentford took the lead on 40 minutes when Josh Clarke rounded off a slick five-man move in style.
Romaine Sawyers low cross was dummied at the near post and Vibe moved the ball on to Clarke who smashed the ball into the top-right corner from just inside the box.
The Bees stretched their lead just before the break when leading scorer Hogan chased down a lost cause and pulled back from the byline for Danish international Vibe to side foot home from close range.
Right-back Colin got in on the act on 58 minutes, smashing into the roof of the net from a tight angle as the Reading defence ball watched.
Kermogant gave them hope after Reading substitute Stephen Quinn was bundled over in the box by Nico Yennaris, coolly firing home under the bar.
But the visitors' resistance was ended with five minutes remaining when Josh McEachran played in Hogan who made no mistake from 12 yards.
In the early stages there was little sign of the Bees' eventual dominance in an enthralling midfield cat-and-mouse battle, with Reading dominating possession and Brentford happy to play on the counter.
Bees makeshift left-back Andreas Bjelland was the first to go close, finding the side-netting with a dipping curling free-kick from the corner of the box.
The visitors' first effort of goal came 15 minutes in when Callum Harriott controlled well but blazed high and wide from 20 yards.
Summer Brentford target George Evans came closest for the Royals on 38 minutes, glancing former Bee John Swift's near-post header against the upright, sparking a scramble to clear.
After the break Jordan Obita's back-post header looked goal-bound but John Egan's goal-line clearance kept it at 2-0.
Hogan forced two reflex stops from Reading keeper Ali Al-Habsi after the interval as the defence tired and Brentford pressed high up the field.
Vibe rolled an effort just wide before Colin made no mistake with an emphatic finish
Minutes later Reading must have known it wouldn't be their night when Harriott toe-poked an effort against the upright.
The Berkshire outfit looked ragged in the dying stages and when Hogan netted the decisive fourth, it looked like the floodgates might open.
Stam had Al-Habsi to thank for two late saves that denied Sullay Kaikai's sizzling low drive and Sawyers's fierce cross shot.
Source : PA