Brentford’s remarkable Carabao Cup run came to an end following a 2-0 defeat to Spurs in the first ever domestic semi-final at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
Thomas Frank’s men had already knocked out Premier League opposition in each of the previous four rounds in Southampton, West Bromwich Albion, Fulham, and Newcastle United, but beating a fifth top-flight side was a step too far for the Championship outfit.
Moussa Sissoko’s early header set Spurs on their way before Heung-Min Son’s clinical finish settled the tie just seven minutes after Ivan Toney had seen his close-range effort ruled out by VAR.
The defeat also ended Brentford’s 17-match unbeaten run, although the second-tier outfit by no means disgraced themselves in what was the first major semi-final in their history.
Jose Mourinho’s side started the brighter and were rewarded in the 13th minute when Sissoko was given the freedom of north London to plant an inch-perfect header into the top-corner from Sergio Regulion’s cross.
Brentford could’ve fallen even further behind seconds later as David Raya was forced into palming Son’s stinging effort away from danger as the hosts’ quality quickly started to show.
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But the Bees responded, although Toney was stretching from Bryan Mbeumo’s cross and could only head comfortably into the hands of Hugo Lloris in what was Brentford’s only attempt on target in the opening period, but Son was required to make a superb block from Josh Dasilva’s piledriver soon after.
Up the other end, Tottenham nearly doubled their advantage when Toney headed Son’s corner towards goal, but Raya once more came to Brentford’s rescue with a flying save to claw the ball out of the top corner and keep the score 1-0.
Brentford almost levelled four minutes after the restart when Mbeumo got the better of Davinson Sanchez down the right, before pulling back for Toney, who looked certain to equalise from point-blank range, but Serge Aurier came from nowhere to make a goal-saving block and preserve Spurs’ lead.
The Tottenham right-back was then heavily involved up the other end less than 60 seconds later, but failed to hit the target when the ball fell kindly for him inside the area.
Spurs continued to threaten and had an even better opportunity to move further ahead, but this time Son was the guilty party as he couldn’t test Raya after Sissoko had dug out a cross.
And Tottenham were nearly made to pay for those missed chances when Brentford thought they’d levelled in the 64th minute after Toney headed home from a corner, although the former Peterborough striker’s knee was adjudged to have been in an offside position and the goal was therefore ruled out by VAR.
Just five minutes later Spurs did eventually put the last-four tie to bed as Tanguy Ndombele threaded an inch-perfect pass for Son, who raced through on goal before blasting past Raya.
Tottenham threatened a third as Harry Kane was denied by Raya and then Ndombele struck a post, before the Bees’ misery was compounded late on as Dasilva saw red for a dangerous tackle on Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, but only after Mike Dean had used the VAR monitor to aid his decision.
FULL TIME: Tottenham 2 – 0 Brentford