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16:53 27th March 2010

Barnet 1-1 Burton Albion

The Brewers battled to a well deserved point at Underhill as Greg Pearson found the net for the third successive game. An open, end to end game could have gone either way as both sides pushed for a late winner but in the end a draw was a fair result.

Brewers boss Paul Peschisolido resolved his selection dilemma by sticking to the same team that earned the club their first ever win at the Crown Ground on Tuesday evening. That meant that after scoring in his last two appearances, Greg Pearson held onto his place in attack at the expense of Steve Kabba who had to be content with a place on the substitutes bench. After only naming six substitutes for the last two matches the bench was back up to full numbers as Michael Simpson, missing since January with a broken foot, began his return to action. John McGrath, on his 30th birthday, was looking to skipper the side to their fourth League double of their maiden Football League season following the Brewers 2-0 victory over the Bees at the Pirelli Stadium back in October.

Kicking down the notorious Underhilll slope, Albion made a bright start but the hosts had the first realm opportunity in the fifth minute as Albion struggled to clear a free kick and Gary Breen almost got in behind the defence to test Artur Krysiak. The Brewers reacted swiftly and a dipping 25 yard shot from McGrath fell just wide of the upright.

Shaun Harrad was guilty of a disappointing miss in the eighth minute showing good control to bring down Tony James' diagonal pass and after cutting inside his man, failed to find the target from a position that has yielded a few goals this season for the former Notts County frontman.

After some midfield exchanges as both sides tried to establish a grip on the game it was the Brewers who broke the deadlock in the 18th minute. Shaun Harrad won his battle with experienced defender Gary Breen and brought Cleveland Taylor into play. The winger had just enough time to work a cross into the middle where Jimmy Phillips won the ball and when it broke to Greg PEARSON, the striker was had enough time to chest the ball and lob it over Jake Cole into the net.

Harrad had another chance to score moments later but put the ball safely into the clutches of Cole.

Albert Adomah won a bout of head tennis in the Albion penalty which left Artur Krysiak happy to see the ball drop over the crossbar as the hosts tried to find an equaliser.

The Brewers were looking lovely in attack and Cleveland Taylor tried his luck on 25 minutes. The winger dragged his shot across goal but the ball must have passed just inches in front of Pearson looking a poach a second goal of the afternoon.

The Barnet goal led a charmed life. McGrath's near post corner in the 32nd minute was met by the faintest of touches by Harrad with keeper Jake Cole nowhere near it. Somehow the balled was cleared off the line as Pearson looked to score again and the hosts were mightily relieved to escape without conceding again when McGrath's volley went wide after deflecrting off Harrad.

Albion's failure to capitalise on their chances cost them dearly as the clock ticked into stoppage time. Matt Lockwood got into a good position to cross for Paul Furlong to get a header in and although Krysiak got a good touch to keep the ball out it fell nicely beyond the far post for Mark HUGHES to sweep the ball into the bottom corner.

Half time: Barnet 1-1 Burton Albion

After initially soaking up some early pressure from Barnet at the start of the second half itr was the Brewers who began to look threatening again. Pearson almost got goalside of Clovis Kamdjo but could not quite find Harrad with a killer pass and moments later Albion's leading scorer almost increased his tally with a dipping volley that Cole did well to claw away.

Barnet made two substitutions just before the hour mark and the first, Kenny Gillet almost gifted Albion a second goal in the 61st minute. Slicing his clearance on the edge of the box he allowed Shaun Harrad in but got back to sufficiently distract the Albion man, deflecting his shot out for a corner. Harrad then flicked the corner agonisingly wide of the far post.

Albion then had to survive a barrage of pressure as Albert Adomah caused havoc down the right and his cross found Albert Jarrett at the back post who should have done better than drive the ball back across the six yard box with Albion desperately flinging bodies in to keep the ball out.

Chances continued to come along and Harrad squandered another in the 66th minute. Paul Boertien's cross from the left seemed to be dribbling harmlessly out until it was kept in play by Cleveland Taylor and the winger's driven low cross was turned just wide by Albion's in form striker.

The Brewers made a double change on 67 minutes with Aaron Webster replacing Jimmy Phillips on the left and Steve Kabba coming on for Greg Pearson in attack. The latter almost immediately had am impact playing a slide rule pass through to Harrad who just failed to nick the ball past Cole.

After awarding no fewer than 27 free kicks, referee Phil Gibbs finally produced a yellow card when Gillet sent Kabba tumbling in the 79th minute.

Harrad managed to turn Breen on the edge of the box in the 82nd minute but falling back lifted his shot well over the crossbar.

Neither side wanted to settle for a share of the spoils and Adomah went close to giving his side the lead in the 84th minute getting the better of Boertien down the right before Tom Parkes got in a superb block.

BARNET: Cole, Devera, Hughes, Breen, Adomah, M.Hyde (Wright, 58), Jarrett (Upson, 80), Kamdjo (Gillet, 58), Furlong, Lockwood, Livermore. Substitutes: Deverdics, O'Neill, J.Hyde, Carpenter.

ALBION: Krysiak; Corbett, James, Parkes, Boertien; Taylor, Penn, McGrath, Phillips (Webster, 67) ; Harrad, Pearson (Kabba, 67). Substitutes: Poole, Simpson, Boco, Knowles, Kelly.

Referee: Mr. P.N.Gibbs (West Midlands)

GOALS: Barnet - Hughes (45+1), Albion - Pearson (18)

ATTENDANCE: 1,842 (233 away)

    Data provided by Press Association


    Burton Albion moved into the £7million Pirelli Stadium in 2005