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James Crawley

James Crawley writes

Posted Friday, March 9th 2018

Big Match Preview: Burton Albion away

City will be looking to keep pace with their play-off chasing rivals with a win against league strugglers Burton Albion.

But victory is far from guaranteed, as Brewers boss Nigel Clough will be out ensure his relegation-threatened side are up for the fight.

It was a 0-0 draw in the reverse fixture at Ashton Gate back in October, in what was only the third meeting between the two sides but with more up for grabs at this point in the season, don't expect a repeat.

Can City get back to winning ways at the Pirelli Stadium this weekend?

Here’s a closer look at Saturday's opponents.

FACTFILE

Formed: 1950
Nickname: Brewers
Website: www.burtonalbionfc.co.uk
Twitter: @burtonalbionfc
Ground: Pirelli Stadium
Capacity: 6,912

Honours:
League Two: 2014/15
Conference: 2008/09
Northern Premier League: 2001/02
Southern League Cup: 1963/64, 1996/97, 1999/2000
FA Trophy: Runners up in 1986/87

Last season:
League finish:
20th
FA Cup: Third round, lost 2-0 (A) to Watford
EFL Cup: Second round, lost 5-0 (H) to Liverpool
Top scorer: Jackson Irvine, 10 goals
Average attendance: 5,227

HOW DID THEY GET HERE?

The Brewers have certainly turned heads in recent years after their sudden rise up the Football League.

Burton Albion enjoyed League Two success in the 2014/15 season before earning a spot in the Championship the following year.

But life in England’s second tier has not been plain sailing for today’s visitors, who finished 20th in the league last year and who have won just seven Championship games all season; nine in all competitions.

They have scored 26 goals in the Championship this term; only Birmingham City have scored fewer having found the net 23 times and at the other end, the Brewers have also conceded 62 times this campaign, with only Sunderland faring worse (65).

Nigel Clough is enjoying his second spell in charge of the Brewers

MEET THE GAFFER – NIGEL CLOUGH

The 51-year-old is enjoying a second managerial spell at Burton Albion, following a decade-long player-manager career (1998-2008) with the Brewers.

He also notched 131 goals for Nottingham Forest, as well as appearing for the likes of Manchester City, Liverpool and England.

The son of the late Brian Clough led today’s visitors to League One success en route to the Championship, where his side are now in their second-consecutive season.

Clough went on to manage Derby County for four years and Sheffield United, before his return to the Pirelli Stadium in December 2015.

Lucas Akins

STAR MAN – LUCAS AKINS

The 29-year-old right-sided player is certainly a creative threat for the Brewers, leading their goalscoring charts having netted four times this season, alongside six assists.

He's one of their key performers this season, according to Whoscored, who list dribbling and an eye for a key pass among his main attributes.

Akins has experience in both England and Scotland, with his CV boasting playing time with Hamilton, Partick Thistle. Tranmere and Stevenage before his move to Burton in 2014.

City's players and fans celebrate Tammy Abraham's last-gasp winner

MEMORABLE MEETING 2016/17

Burton Albion 1-2 Bristol City

Bristol City had won their opening three matches for the first time since 2001, following league and EFL Cup victories over Wigan and Wycombe, and sat top of the early Championship table - albeit by alphabetical order.

There was an air of controversy over Abraham's opening goal, with Brewers' players claiming the ball had hit Callum O'Dowda's hand before the Chelsea loanee hooked in from close range just before half-time.

Tom Naylor looked like he had earned a point for the home side when he netted two minutes from time, smashing Stuart Beavon's cross into an unguarded goal at the far post.

However, that wasn't the end of the drama.

Abraham snatched a dramatic 95th-minute winner, largely down to the brilliance of Ivory Coast international Jonathan Kodjia.

The fellow frontman robbed Jackson Irvine of possession before bursting down the wing and finding the onrushing Abraham to bundle home, making City’s first visit to the Pirelli Stadium one to remember.

Burton Albion: McLaughlin, Flanagan (Beavon), Mousinho, McFadzean, Turner, Dyer, Palmer, Williamson (Naylor), Irvine, O’Grady, Akins. Subs not used: Butcher, Bywater, McCrory, Choudhury.

City: O’Donnell, Little, Flint, Magnusson, Bryan, Tomlin (Wilbraham), O’Neil, Brownhill (Reid), O’Dowda (Pack), Kodjia, Abraham. Subs not used: O’Leary, Golbourne, Freeman, Matthews.

Attendance: 4,579

AND FINALLY...

Officials
Oliver Langford
James Wilson and Steven Meredith
Fourth Official: Martin Coy

Betting (via SkyBet)
Burton 7/2
Draw 12/5
City 17/20

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