The Brewers put in a great performance to ease past Bradford City thanks to goals from Shaun Harrad, James Collins and Russell Penn. It was a welcome return to form for Paul Peschisolido's men who could take away many positives including a goal for Collins on his full debut and an excellent first appearance from on loan left back Scott Malone.
The Brewers took the lead through Harrad's 31st minute penalty after a foul on Lewis Young. Collins' near post header made it two after the break and Russell Penn finished off a breakaway move late on to round off a terrific afternoon for Burton Albion.
On loan left back Scot Malone made his Brewers debut against Bradford City in the absence of both Paul Boertien and Aaron Webster. The England Under 19 International lined up in a back four which saw the return of Darren Moore. However his regular centre back partner Nathan Stanton was forced to start from the bench after being delayed in traffic, Andy Corbett came in at right back with Ryan Austin moving inside to partner Moore.
John McGrath returned to midfield after suspension alongside Adam Bolder with Jacques Maghoma, celebrating his 23rd birthday on the left wing and Lewis Young on the right.
On loan striker James Collins made his first start for Albion alongside Shaun Harrad in attack.
Both Darren Moore and Adam Bolder have had spells for Bradford City in their careers, with the latter turning out for the Bantams on loan from Millwall last season.
Bradford were missing influential midfielder Lee Hendrie due to a calf injury.
And it was the birthday boy jacques Maghoma who had the first chance of the game for the Brewers. Maghoma raced out of defence in the 9th minute and fed Malone on the overlapping run. The Wolves youngster played a first time ball to Shaun Harrad who back heeled for Maghoma who steered his shot just wide.
The Brewers came even closer in the 18th minute when Jacques Maghoma threaded a ball through from the left for Harrad who hit the bar with his shot at the near post.
It was Bradford who should have taken the lead in the 25th minute. Omar Daley took full advantage of Andy Corbett's slip and cut inside from the left but elected to shoot with power from only 8 yards out, sending the ball high over the cross bar.
It had been a lively opening with both sides taking up an attacking mindset. Ryan Austin had a header on target from a corner kick in the 27th minute. Lewis Young then shot just wide from 25 yards after running with the ball from the half way line, follwed a minute later by an opportunity for James Collins who controlled well on his chest and tested Jon McLaughlin in the Bantams net from 18 yards.
And the Brewers pressure brought rewards in the 31st minute when Malone headed the ball across towards Young who was brought down by McLaughlin, with Shaun HARRAD making no mistake from the spot, smashing the penalty home.
There was more danger for Bradford in the 42nd minute when Jacques Maghoma was fouled on the edge of the area. Harrad lined up the freekick which skipped off the top of the wall almost into the path of Lewis Young but the Bradford defence were able to clear.
Burton came close again just befoe half time when Harrad crossed to the far post for James Collins whose header back across goal came back off the post, Bolder shot powerfully on the follow up straight at McLaughlin with the ball rebounding again to Bolder who shot into the side netting.
Half time: Burton Albion 1 - 0 Bradford City
Scott Malone created another opportunity for Harrad two minutes into the second half. The on loan left back ran the ball down the left wing before picking out Harrad with a great cross but the Brewers top scorer, forced into shooting first time on his weaker foot, sent the ball high over the cross bar.
Harrad fired in a snapshot on McLaughlin the 53rd minute, forcing a save from the keeper. And a minute later the Brewers were two up. Bradford's Luke O'Brien briefly lost track of the ball allowing Bolder to steal in and cross from the right for James COLLINS who flicked his near post header past McLaughlin for his first goal in Burton colours.
A superb flowing move culminated in a 25 yard shot from Maghoma in the 64th minute, saved by McLaughin who was not seriously tested. Russell Penn came on to replace Lewis Young.
Scott Malone, enjoying an excellent debut for the Brewers almost capped it with a goal in the 67th minute, forcing a good save out of McLaughlin from a 25 yard freekick.
Jimmy Phillips was brought on for Harrad in the 82nd minute, with the Brewers firmly in control of the match.
And the Brewers made the points safe in the 88th minute. Jimmy Phillips ran onto a long ball down the left from Legzdins and crossed for fellow substitute PENN who finished first time to make it 3-0.
Final Score: Burton Albion 3-0 Bradford City
Goalscorers: Brewers: Harrad (pen 31) Collins (54) Penn (88)
Referee: Mr B. Malone
Booked: Moore (84) Gill (86)
Brewers: LEGZDINS, CORBETT, MOORE, AUSTIN, MALONE, YOUNG (PENN 66), MAGHOMA, MCGRATH, BOLDER, COLLINS, HARRAD (PHILLIPS 82). Subs: CLANCY, STANTON, WALKER, PENN, PHILLIPS, PEARSON, DYER.
Bantams: MCLAUGHLIN, O'BRIEN, DALEY (MOULT 62), DOHERTY, WILLIAMS, OSBORNE, HANSON, SYERS, BROWN, GILL, PRICE (SPEIGHT 76). Subs: REHMAN, OLIVER, SPEIGHT, MOULT, SAXTON, BULLOCK, CHILAKA.