Jackson header gives Town a point after second-half rally
Kayden Jackson’s first Championship goal for Town gave Blues a share of the points against high flying Brentford.
The signing from Accrington sent a superb header into the net 20 minutes from time to cancel out Neal Maupay’s first-half goal.
Jackson, who also hit the bar, could have won it for Town in added on time but fired over while Blues were indebted to Dean Gerken for three crucial saves.
Portman Road gave a rousing farewell to Kevin Beattie before kick-off, with his team-mates leading the tribute, carrying his number six shirt onto the pitch, with Beat’s daughter Emma and grandson Kieron leading the teams out.
The minute’s applause was resounding and it was followed on six minutes by another acknowledgment of the former Blue’s standing within the Town support.
Ellis Harrison had the Town fans on their feet again, going down under a challenge in the area but referee Darren Bond waved away the penalty appeals.
Brentford soon showed the threat they carried though, Romaine Sawyers sending a shot across goal, then the Bee firing over.
Town responded, Jonas Knudsen fizzed a deflected shot over the bar, Matt Pennington forcing Daniel Bentley into a save on his line.
Cole Skuse did superbly to rob Maupay as he looked to get in after a Brentford counter, Said Benrahma inches away from converting at the far post, then Sawyers was handed too much room from a corner but he failed to capitalise.
Brentford were full of confidence and the opener came just after the half hour, Maupay heading in after a flurry of activity in and around the Town box.
Harrison worked hard to create an opening for Blues but his cross raced away from Jackson, then at the other end Gerken held firm from Josh McEachran’s free-kick, the Town ‘keeper then beating out Benrahma’s shot.
Jackson went down under a challenge from Chris Mepham but again no spot-kick as Brentford maintained their goal lead.
Town made two changes at the break, Gwion Edwards and Jon Nolan on for Harrison and Jordan Spence.
Knudsen was denied by Bentley after patient build up play, then Jackson’s overhead kick cannoned back off the bar as Town pressed for an early second-half reply.
Grant Ward carried the attack to Brentford down either flank, his cross held by Bentley at the second attempt, but it needed Gerken at the other end to prevent Kamohelo Mokotjo extending Brentford’s lead.
Gerken kept Town in it again to deny Maupay from close range after a slick move, Yoann Barbet then smacking a free-kick against the bar.
Maupay sent another effort over the bar but on 72 minutes Town were level, Jackson flashing a superb header into the far corner from Trevoh Chalobah’s cross.
Pennington did well to block Maupay’s effort as Brentford looked to restore their lead, Town then threatening at the other end from a corner but the ball skimmed away from Pennington.
Jackson tested Bentley from the edge of the box, Gerken quick off his line to smother the danger from Ollie Watkins before Jackson raced clear but couldn’t keep his shot down in added on time as Blues made it four draws from four at Portman Road.
Town: Gerken, Donacien, Knudsen, Chambers, Pennington, Chalobah (Downes 82), Skuse, Jackson, Harrison (Edwards 46), Spence (Nolan 46), Ward. Subs not used: Bialkowski, Graham, Edun, Kenlock. Booked: Knudsen.
Brentford: Bentley, Mepham, Maupay (Judge 78), McEachran (Yennaris 68), Watkins, Mokotjo, Sawyers, (Canos 60), Dalsgaard, Konsa, Barbet. Subs not used: Daniels, MacLeod, Clarke, Jeanvier. Booked: Barbet.
Att: 14, 897