United return to the Abbey on Saturday and welcome the seasons surprise package (so far), Burton Albion. Three wins in three games, including big scalps of Ipswich and Sunderland see the Brewers sit second in the table, and United will need to be on their guard against Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink’s side.
After the news that Greg Taylor is going to miss a significant part of the season Mark Bonner is left with a central defensive headache, as Jubril Okedina is also on the treatment bench. Lloyd Jones will start, most likely paired with Jack Iredale, meaning Harrison Dunk will fit in at left back.
The big question lies further up the park though, will Bonner move away from his tried and severely tested one up front or will he stick with goal machine Joe Ironside leading the line solo? One bit of good news is that tomorrows game doesn’t take place on a Tuesday, which means Wes Hoolahan should return to the squad, and Jack Lankester is getting ever closer to full fitness too.
Expected U’s Line-Up: Mitov, Williams, Jones, Iredale, Dunk, Digby, O’Neil, Tracey, Brophy, Hoolahan, Ironside
Who’s Their Player To Watch? Burton have spread the goals around the team so far this season, with their four goals coming from four different players. Older readers might remember defender Michael Mancienne from his time at Chelsea in the mid 00’s, where he made four appearances, whilst they also boast a couple of ex-B*ro rejects in Michael Bostwick and Frazer Blake-Tracey. We’ll also be watching new signing Omari Patrick closely, who impressed in a disappointing Carlisle team last season.
Who’s In The Dugout? One of the best-known managers in the division Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink made his name as a Premier League hitman for Leeds, Chelsea, Middlesbrough and Charlton. He returns to Burton for another crack at managing them, after leading them to the League Two title back in 2015. Alongside him in the dugout will be ex-Stevenage dickhead Dino Maamria, who’ll be sure to receive a warm Abbey welcome.
What’s Their Recent Form Like? Decent. Three wins in three.
Any Ex-United Players? We don’t think so.
Last Time Out: Burton 2-4 United, 6 October 2020
A brace from Luke Hannant, plus goals from Harvey Knibbs and Harry Darling saw United progress in the EFL Trophy last season.
From The Archive: United 2-1 Burton, 6 May 2008
Was it a cross? Was it a shot? We’re still not sure even Rob Wolleaston knows to be honest, but the former Chelsea man scored twice to send United to Wembley at the expense of Burton back in 2008. What happened after that is best left forgotten though…
Can Big Joe Ironside carry on his scoring ratio? We talk about the big man in the latest episode of the UTAS Podcast, listen below.