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Match Reports

Report: Burton Albion 1-2 Stevenage

9 December 2023

Match Reports

Report: Burton Albion 1-2 Stevenage

9 December 2023

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Boro pick up a hard-earned three points on the road through goals from Kane Hemmings and Jamie Reid...

Stevenage travelled to the Pirelli Stadium for the first time in almost nine years as Burton Albion looked to stand in the way of another three points in League One.

The gaffer made five changes from last weekend’s FA Cup tie against Port Vale as Dan Sweeney, Jake Forster-Caskey, Nick Freeman, Harrison Neal and Kane Hemmings returned to the starting eleven.

Intially, the side lined up with a back five of Luther James-Wildin, Dan Sweeney, Terence Vancooten, Carl Piergianni and Dan Butler in front of Taye Ashby-Hammond between the sticks.

The midfield trio consisted of Harrison Neal, who was handed his first league start, Jake Forster Caskey and Nick Freeman, behind the strike force of Jamie Reid and Kane Hemmings.

After just six minutes, Burton Albion were awarded a penalty and it was Joe Powell to step up and take. Taye Ashby-Hammond guessed correctly and denied the penalty, but he couldn’t do anything about the rebound as Deji Oshilaja opened the scoring.

Despite going a goal down in harsh fashion, Stevenage spent large portions of the first half on the front foot as they hunted down an equaliser. Jamie Reid’s low cross from the right-hand side after twenty minutes almost crept in at the near post, but Max Crocombe pushed it out for a corner.

Then, moments later, Jake Forster-Caskey sent a dangerous low ball into the box which ended up at the feet of Kane Hemmings who fired over the bar.

Over five minutes remained of the first half when Stevenage came incredibly close to levelling the scoring. Jake Forster-Caskey’s corner caused all sorts of problems as a goal mouth scramble occurred. Jamie Reid’s back-heel led to many claims of the ball creeping over the line, but the officials said no.

As the fourth official held up one minute of additional time, Boro found their deserved equaliser. Carl Piergianni’s cross met Luther James-Wildin who knocked the ball across the face of the goal for Kane Hemmings to fire home against his former club.

It seemed the perfect time to score as the sides went into the break a goal apiece.

Boro came flying out of the blocks after half-time as they looked to take the lead, and five minutes into the half, they were awarded a penalty after Jake Forster-Caskey was tripped.

It was Jamie Reid standing over it, leaving Boro fans with absolutely no doubt, as the number nineteen converted to score his 17th of the season in all competitions.

Boro really stepped up a gear after their second goal with some fine football on display. The visitors were extremely dangerous in wide areas with many threatening balls being sent into the opponents’ box.

The gaffer made his first change on the 67th minute as Harrison Neal, who had been mightily impressive in midfield, made way for Louis Thompson in a like-for-like swap.

A rare chance came for the hosts with under twenty remaining as Mustapha Carayol’s cross met the head of Sam Hughes, but Boro’s Ashby-Hammond produced a wonderful save to keep a hold of his side’s lead.

A triple Boro change was made with under ten to go as Aaron Pressley, Elliott List and Ben Thompson were all introduced in place of Kane Hemmings, Jamie Reid and Jake Forster-Caskey.

A few minutes later, another change was made as Dan Sweeney made way for Jordan Roberts, with Luther James-Wildin moving into the back three and Nick Freeman occupying the right wing-back role.

With Stevenage still a goal in front, the fourth official indicated six minutes of added time as Boro worked their socks off to stay on top.

Burton Albion had a late free-kick just outside the area, but Taye Ashby-Hammond stretched to his right to deny to the delight of the away end.

Eventually, the referee blew his final whistle to award Boro a well-earned three points away from home which sees them climb to third in the table. Boro were on top for a large portion of the game and deservedly walked away the victors.

Attention now turns to the FA Cup replay against Port Vale on Tuesday to decide who travels to Maidstone in the third round.

Attendance: 2406 with 292 away.

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