Mick McCarthy said Alex Smithies was 'broken hearted' in the Cardiff City dressing room after his error allowed Brentford to earn a 1-1 draw on Tuesday night.

The Bluebirds took the lead through a Kieffer Moore penalty but just six minutes later disaster struck when Smithies allowed a long-range effort from Tariqe Fosu to slip through his fingers and into the net.

It was a big gut blow for City, who had done tremendously well to keep this vaunted Bees frontline at bay for most of the evening, as they had to settle for a point in the end.

"I thought our first-half performance was excellent," McCarthy said. "We had a good bit of the ball and, created some chances, I didn't think we gave them too many chances.

"They had one Alex made a great save from, he got in behind Perry (Ng) and Smudger made a great save from that.

"Second half, we've had our backs against the wall against a good side in Brentford. That's why they are where they are and why they've been there all season.

"Poor old Smudge, I feel for him, because he is sat in the dressing room and really broken hearted. But that's what happens, I suppose, it's a goalkeeper's life. He made a great save in the first half.

"We were having to defend, but I still thought we might nick it. Pleased with an overall good performance."

Smithies made some decent saves in the first half, most notably keeping Ivan Toney at bay when he was clean through, sticking a right mitt out to deny the forward from point-blank range.

And the manager acknowledged that without Smithies' first-half performance, Cardiff might not have been in the contest at all.

"You've got to treat them with a lot of love, care and attention," the manager said of how he deals with players who have made an error. "I've been there, you make a mistake.

"That save in the first half, if that had gone in we might have had a real onslaught, who knows what the score might have been.

"It's a mistake, we all make them, we'll be fine."

He added: "If you ask him he'd tell you he should have saved it - and he should have done.

"But that's the life of goalkeepers, defenders, I'm not going to criticise him.

"He's been brilliant, they both have (Smithies and Dillon Phillips), they've both had their tough times and you've just got to support them."