Match ends, Preston North End 4, Brentford 3.
Preston North End 4-3 Brentford: Preston edge out Brentford in seven-goal thriller
Three goals in a frantic opening 23 minutes helped Preston North End to victory against Brentford in a seven-goal thriller at Deepdale.
Alan Browne broke the deadlock early for the hosts, poking home from close range, before Callum Robinson's half-volley doubled their lead seven minutes later.
Tom Barkhuizen's goal, coming from a deflected indirect free-kick, put them firmly in control before Brentford threatened a dramatic comeback with goals from Sergi Canos and Ollie Watkins.
A second strike from Robinson extended the lead once more and despite Neal Maupay's late goal, Alex Neil's side held on to climb out of the Championship relegation zone.
Victory at Deepdale stretched Preston's unbeaten run to four games, achieving a points tally in that period (eight) greater than in their opening 10 league fixtures (five).
Robinson and the rest of the Lilywhites' attack took advantage of poor Brentford defending in the early stages, scoring his sixth and seventh goals of the season to seal victory.
Brentford, still searching for their first point under new manager Thomas Frank, saw their winless run extend to seven games.
The Bees threatened throughout a tense second half, but a brave late save in added time from Preston keeper Chris Maxwell consigned the visitors to defeat.
Preston manager Alex Neil:
"The last four games have been a big turning point for us in terms of points on the board.
"I would rather play effective football than attractive football and I thought we did that tonight. There are a lot of pleasing things from the game for us tonight.
"I think conceding three goals is naturally concerning, and it's something we know we need to work on. But we scored four goals and we arguably could have scored more.
"The table looks a bit better but we still have a lot of work to do. The pleasing thing now is I'm starting to get the solid spine of my team back that worked so well for us last year and we are looking to build on these results."
Brentford head coach Thomas Frank told BBC Radio London:
"You can't concede four goals and think you are going to win, but their first three shots on target brought three goals.
"After that we didn't give up and we attacked well. There was more belief after the first goal.
"The first 20 minutes of the second half was good but then we don't defend well enough again and it goes 4-2.
"Three goals away from home should be more than enough to win three points but we need to defend better in general. In this league you need to be on it."
- 2FisherBooked at 66mins
- 6DaviesBooked at 78mins
- 11JohnsonSubstituted forGallagherat 90+1'minutes
- 29BarkhuizenSubstituted forMaguireat 89'minutes
- 45NmechaSubstituted forMoultat 90+1'minutes
- 22DalsgaardBooked at 38mins
- 19SawyersBooked at 23minsSubstituted forMacLeodat 70'minutes
- 7CanosSubstituted forJudgeat 76'minutes
- 11WatkinsSubstituted forBenrahmaat 70'minutes
- Scott Duncan
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Preston North End 4, Brentford 3.
Hand ball by Sean Maguire (Preston North End).
Attempt missed. Louis Moult (Preston North End) right footed shot from long range on the left is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Paul Gallagher.
Corner, Preston North End. Conceded by Yoann Barbet.
Delay over. They are ready to continue.
Delay in match Chris Maxwell (Preston North End) because of an injury.
Foul by Lewis MacLeod (Brentford).
Chris Maxwell (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Attempt saved. Said Benrahma (Brentford) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Ezri Konsa Ngoyo.
Substitution, Preston North End. Louis Moult replaces Lukas Nmecha.
Substitution, Preston North End. Paul Gallagher replaces Daniel Johnson.
Foul by Moses Odubajo (Brentford).
Sean Maguire (Preston North End) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Substitution, Preston North End. Sean Maguire replaces Tom Barkhuizen.
Attempt missed. Neal Maupay (Brentford) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Moses Odubajo.
Lewis MacLeod (Brentford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Lukas Nmecha (Preston North End).
Goal! Preston North End 4, Brentford 3. Neal Maupay (Brentford) left footed shot from very close range to the top right corner. Assisted by Henrik Dalsgaard following a corner.
Attempt missed. Henrik Dalsgaard (Brentford) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Lewis MacLeod with a cross following a corner.
Corner, Brentford. Conceded by Darnell Fisher.
Attempt missed. Daniel Johnson (Preston North End) left footed shot from a difficult angle and long range on the right is close, but misses to the right from a direct free kick.
Foul by Nico Yennaris (Brentford).
Lukas Nmecha (Preston North End) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Attempt saved. Alan Browne (Preston North End) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Tom Barkhuizen.
Foul by Nico Yennaris (Brentford).
Ben Pearson (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Ben Davies (Preston North End) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Neal Maupay (Brentford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Ben Davies (Preston North End).
Lewis MacLeod (Brentford).
(Preston North End) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Substitution, Brentford. Alan Judge replaces Sergi Canos.
Corner, Brentford. Conceded by Chris Maxwell.
Attempt saved. Neal Maupay (Brentford) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Lewis MacLeod.
Corner, Preston North End. Conceded by Henrik Dalsgaard.
Foul by Said Benrahma (Brentford).
Andrew Hughes (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Substitution, Brentford. Said Benrahma replaces Ollie Watkins.
Substitution, Brentford. Lewis MacLeod replaces Romaine Sawyers.