Brentford 0 Notts County 0

After a break of two-and-a-half weeks, Brentford returned to action and played out a tough draw with Notts County at Griffin Park on Tuesday night.

Manager Andy Scott took advantage of the enforced rest to whisk his squad away to Malaga for a few days' warm weather training.

Afterwards, he acknowledged that the players looked a little rusty after their break: "Yes, I think it was one of those nights where we had to get a little bit of rustiness and some cobwebs out of the system," he said.

"But it's a sign of how far we have come in the past eight games that we're disappointed with a 0-0."

Scott resisted the opportunity to tinker with his line-up, opting to start with an unchanged side and his three new loan signings on the bench.

Once the Bees got going, Gary Smith brought a diving save out of Kevin Pilkington.

At the other end, Ben Hamer was forced to make a rare save from Ali Gibb.

Scott was forced into an early change, when Karleigh Osborne went off suffering from concussion. He was replaced by debutant Osei Sankofa, signed on loan from Charlton Athletic.

Midway through the half, good work down the right wing saw Ricky Shakes deliver a cutback to Glenn Poole, who shot over the crossbar.

Shortly after, a neat lay-off provided Alan Connell with an opportunity but Pilkington comfortably held his snapshot.

As the first half drew to a close there was a moment of controversy when referee Steve Bratt adjudged that Connell had made a backpass to Hamer and awarded County a free-kick about six yards from Brentford's goal-line.

With the Bees defence massed alongside Hamer, they successfully blocked Stephen Hunt's shot.

Despite shading the opening half, Brentford had little to show for their efforts.

The second half was played out to a similar pattern, as Notts County continued to play in a 4-5-1 formation that stifled the Bees.

The impressive Ryan Dickson combined well with Poole down the left and, after Poole's cross was not cleared properly, Ross Montague fired just over the crossbar.

Montague also had the Bees' best remaining chance, when his shot beat Pilkington but Adam Tann scrambled back to clear.

Scott reflected on the positives afterwards: "There were lots of things I saw tonight that we had worked on in Spain and that is nice.

"They are all clever players who want to learn and improve and that gives me great heart."

He also revealed he was working hard to enhance his squad, with a striker top of the list.

"I am trying to make thing happen but it is hard work," he said.

"I would like to bring in one or two players, but it depends on availability and money and whether clubs are willing to let them go.

"It's no secret I need another forward but at this stage of the season a lot of clubs don't want to let their strikers go."

Brentford: Hamer, Pead, Osborne (sub Sankofa 18), Heywood, Dickson; Shakes, O'Connor, Smith, Poole; Montague, Connell . Subs (not used): Simon Brown, Parkes, Thorpe, Stone.Attendance: 4,332Man of the match: Ryan Dickson