Mark Warburton has called on his Brentford players to restore their season-long focus after they were held to a 0-0 draw at Oldham.
After losing 3-0 at Rotherham in midweek the promotion-chasing Bees came under pressure for long spells against an Oldham side who are still in the relegation fight.
Brentford goalkeeper David Button made a smart first-half save from Jonson Clarke-Harris before Oldham's Danny Philliskirk headed over from close range.
Button also did well to parry James Wilson's header, while Gary Harkins went close and James Dayton wasted a clear chance for the Latics.
Brentford's best efforts came from Clayton Donaldson and Stuart Dallas, but the visitors were unable to beat Oldham goalkeeper Paul Rachubka.
The bonus for Brentford was that they moved four points clear of third-placed Leyton Orient, who lost against Bradford.
Warburton said: "The players are a victim of their own success because teams are putting men behind the ball and making it hard for us to break them down.
"But our first-half performance was poor and the players are the first to admit that.
"They know their standards and they also know those standards weren't reached in the first half.
"It was better in the second half because we had more desire, more tempo and we were braver in our decision making.
"The rewards are there for the players. With eight games left they can see them, but they have to apply themselves accordingly.
"We need to get our focus right to play Sheffield United on Tuesday.
"It's the players' hard work and effort that has got them into this position, but we need to be more clinical in the final third and go about our business in the right way."