10 men Lambs go down to scrappy winner
20 February 2007
Tamworth made the short journey to Burton for a crunch Conference clash on the back of a three game unbeaten run. The Brewers however had won just one of their last seven league games which gave the tie all the makings of a great game. No team had won at home in any of the previous seven Conference local derbies, although Burton held the upper hand this season with a 1-0 win via a Daryl Clare penalty on Boxing Day 2006.
Lambs boss Gary Mills made two enforced changes to the side that defeated Woking 2-0 on Saturday with Graeme Law and Steve Burton coming in for an injured Adie Smith (thigh) and Jake Edwards (hip).
A lively start by both sides saw tackles flying in as the ball moved quickly from end to end and the Lambs won a corner on 5 which Rikki Bains met with his head, but watched go harmlessly wide at the far post.
John McGrath tried a dipping volley from distance on 7 but the ball flew over the top of Kevin Poole’s bar. Burton then came forward , in front of the East stand teeming with Lambs fans, and Matt Williams charged down a Daryl Clare effort. The ball ran immediately to the other end and Taiwo Atieno tried his luck from the right but shot wide of the far post.
Andy Corbett then struck a low shot with his left boot on 11 which skimmed across the area to safety well wide of Jose Veiga’s goal.
An accumulation of incidents involving Steve Burton resulted in the Lambs second yellow card of the evening on 16 and then, on 17 John McGrath headed Gary Rowett’s header from a Brewers corner against his own bar and the ball was scrambled away.
On 22 John Brayford moved out of midfield and pushed the ball to Jon Shaw who shot from 20 yards but cleared the bar.
Another home corner came on 24 as Albion tried to take the initiative but the game then descended into a midfield battle with neither of the two teams able to put anymore than a few passes together.
However, on 36 Atieno flicked on for Burton who burst into the area but was denied a shooting chance by the Brewers defence.
There was a flash point on 44 when Gary Rowett and Atieno tussled on the floor resulting in a red card for Atieno but just a yellow for Rowett. From the free kick McGrath fired the ball into the box from the right corner flag and although Kyle Storer got a boot to the chance it went over the bar from 8 yards.
Viega denied Clare with a point blank save and deflected it out for a corner over his bar after a flowing move down the right wing on 50 after the home team worked the ball from the right wing to left of the area and Veiga did it again on 57 denying Jon Shaw’s header with a flying back peddling save, tipping the ball over his.
Steve Burton and substitute Jon Stevenson combined on the right on the hour mark for Stevenson to cut past the last defender and force Kevin Poole to parry a low shot but Williams could not get there quick enough to force the ball over the line and Burton broke to win a corner at the other end which Steve Burton cleared of the line following Ryan Austin’s header.
Steve Burton came off on 65 for Michael Tuohy – his first league appearance since mid November – as the Lambs reorganized their formation once again to 4-5-0 to cope with the pressure of the Brewers and look for a break when possible.
On 72 Andy Corbett fed Brayford in the area who turned the ball across the face of goal, but Veiga was quick to smother the ball and stop the chance in it’s tracks, but on 74 Burton took the lead.
The ball came in from the right wing from Sean Harrad and as Veiga and Weaver tried to clear with Shaw pressurising everyone tangled together but Shaw managed to flick the ball home from 6 yards. (0-1)
Simon Heslop got a bad knock on 87 and was left nursing a bad back for the remaining few minutes and despite the numerical disadvantage The Lambs continued to look for an equalizer.
An additional four minutes added time at the end of the second period gave some hope to the traveling faithful but there was no fairytale ending and the Brewers took the points leaving the Lambs to look forward to the visit of Oxford United on Saturday.
Burton (Tuohy 65), Atieno
McGrath (Stevenson 58), Storer, Heslop, Williams
Friars (Briscoe 78), Bains, Weaver, Law
Subs: Bampton, Belford
Corbett, Carden, Bell, (Henshaw 80) Ducros
Brayford, Tinson, Austin, Rowett (Harrad HT)
Subs: Webster, Taylor, Clough
Yellow Cards: Williams 12, Burton 16, Bell 20, Rowett 45, Storer 54, Heslop 90+
Red Cards: Atieno 45