Another away day another win. That was Wednesday. The record now stands at played 11, won 8, scored 20 and conceded 5 away from home in this league. It’s some record. Another clean sheet at Burton and no doubt three more points will head home with us. We’ve only failed to score on the road this season on August 5th at Fulham. Oddly enough probably the two worst away performances since then have come at the bottom two clubs Rotherham and Wigan. Despite not controlling games as we normally do in both games we collected six points and didn’t concede. Both sides ‘had a go’ at United and I expect Saturday to be more of the same.
Burton are defying expectations by making a real fist of survival. They currently have 22 points from 21 games and are two points clear of Blackburn and four ahead of Wigan. Their form is reasonable of late but a crucial win against Rotherham is their only win since October. Notable wins have come at home against Birmingham, Sheffield Wednesday and Derby. Burton have lost just three times at home including a late defeat to Huddersfield. They’ve conceded just seven goals in 10 league home games. Impressive and much like Wigan, they seem beatable but not easy to beat, not losing games by many goals or picking up any pastings.
It’ll be more of the same from United with one or two changes. Still no Jack Colback is worrying with Shelvey likely to be banned next week for five games, we sorely missed a replacement for the excellent Hayden after his booking on Wednesday. Fresh midfield legs needed from the bench. I’d expect Yedlin and maybe another change in the back four, with Atsu in with a chance of starting ahead of Ritchie like at Rotherham where he was the difference. Mitrovic spent half time on Wednesday pissing about kicking balls away from his colleagues and then unsurprisingly didn’t get on. Maybe he’ll play, I hope not. Gayle had a quiet game and Diame was excellent – Rafa may be tempted to bring in Perez as he seems to rate him. Who knows?
The 9 day break to Sheffield Wednesday will be much appreciated by the squad and staff I’m sure. I’m knackered writing this after getting back from Wigan last night. A packed out SJP with 3,200 from Sheffield should be a cracking occasion. Work to be done first though as Burton’s home record deserves respect, three points would be most welcome and we can all enjoy Christmas nine points clear of third place.
ALEX HURST – Follow Alex on @tfalex1892
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