Both sides had chances to win this opening day encounter as Burton and Oxford played out an entertaining 0-0 draw. Paul Peschisolido will have been encoraged by the displays of Nathan Stanton and Darren Moore in central defence as both sides held strong to take a share of the points. The Brewers best chance fell to Russell Penn mid way through the second half when he shot over the bar at the far post.
Burton Albion got their diamond anniversary season under way with the visit of newly promoted Oxford United to the Pirelli Stadium.
Brewers boss Paul Peschisolido went with the line up many people had expected, with new signings Adam Legzdins, Nathan Stanton, Darren Moore and Adam Bolder all making their league debut's.
Oxford have been victorious on their last three visits to the Pirelli Stadium, with the last meeting between the sides resulting in a 1-0 victory for the U's in Burton's final home match of the Blue Square Premier Championship winning campaign.
The first real shot in anger came from Oxford in the third minute but midfielder Asa Hall's speculative drive failed to trouble Adam Legzdins in the Burton goal.
Russell Penn surged forward in the 12th minute and was crudely brought down by Harry Worley 30 yards out. Aaron Webster took charge of the set piece, just to the right of centre and perfect for the left footer. But Webster's dipping free kick, although close, just went wide of the post.
Burton had made a solid opening to the new campaign and 15 minutes in were looking the more confident side. Adam Bolder sat alongside John McGrath protecting the backline, which was being well marshalled by the combination of Darren Moore and Nathan Stanton.
Nathan Stanton blocked Asa Hall's 15 yard effort with his head after 21 minutes, as Oxford looked to assert themselves upon the game. Matthew Green's shot from even further out was deflected over the bar by Moore.
Oxford's travelling fans were in fine voice and their team was giving them plenty to get excited about as they maintained their pressure 25 minutes in. The Brewers' passing in midfield was beginning to let them down with Peschisolido becomming increasingly frustrated in the technical area.
A succession of silly freekicks allowed Oxford to maintain their momentum, culminating in Simon Heslop's looping cross being well claimed by Adam Legzdins.
The best chance so far for the Brewers fell in the 32nd minute to Shaun Harrad. Greg Pearson picked the ball up 20 yards out and skipped past a defender with a quick shift of his feet, he then slipped the ball across to Harrad who stretched to make contact, but U's keeper Ryan Clarke got just enough on the ball to prevent it rolling across the line.
Webster then whipped across a dangerous ball three minutes later, Pearson did well to angle his header towards goal but his effort was always too high to trouble Clarke. It was a more encouraging passage of play for the Brewers with ten minutes to go until the end of the first half,
With a minute to go before the break, Harrad found himself in space 25 yards out and it a trademark shot on the turn, but last season's top scorer had his effort deflected and the ball trickled just wide of the post. Burton were finsihing strongly in the first half and a succession of corners put the U's under more pressure, before Chris Wilder's men eventually cleared to safety.
Half time: Burton Albion 0-0 Oxford United
Following an accepted marriage proposal over the public address system at half time, the Brewers were looking to tie the knot on all three points with an improved second half performance.
But the first good chance fell to Oxford when Jack Hudson hooked his volley over the bar following a cross from the right in the 60th minute.
Adam Bolder's corner in the 55th minute was dragged low to the edge of the area, and although completley missed by Greg Pearson, he ball continued on to McGrath who had an excellent chance to put the Brewers one up, but he sliced his effort wide.
The Brewers almost took the lead in the 62nd minute when McGrath played in Boertin down the left, Boertien cut inside the full back and flicked over the cross, but Russell Penn arriving at the far post shot over the bar.
Oxford replied with a good chance of their own three minutes later. Heslop played in Asa Hall who was unmarked 18 yards out. But fortunatley for the Brewers, Hall's first time shot lacked the power to beat Legzdins.
Peschisolido made his first change in the 67th minute, replacing Shaun Harrad with new signing Lewis Young. The younger brother of England winger Ashley, would look to add pace to the Brewers attack. A minute later Adam Bolder was replaced by Jacques Maghoma, in an attack minded substitution.
The change in personnel lead to a change in formation, with the Brewers changing to a 4-2-3-1 line up. Maghoma partnered McGrath in the middle with Webster, Penn and Young supporting Pearson in attack.
Lewis Young gave a glimpse of what the home fans may be expecting from the new signing in the 74th minute. John McGrath picked him out with an excellent cross field ball, the winger ran with pace at the defence before unleashing a powerful 30 yard drive which just flew over the bar.
Young continued to impress down the right but neither side could find the break through as the game entered the final ten minutes. Greg Pearson looked to capitalise on a slip by Worley in the 88th minute, but he was flagged offside before he could play in Russell Penn.
Oxford pressured late on with two corners in quick succession, both were well delivered by Heslop but the Brewers backline held firm. Heslop's freekick from a wide position on the right was cleared behind goal by the ehad of Russell Penn, with the following corner also eventually cleared by Penn.
The game entered three minutes of stoppage time with the U's on the front foot, but both sides were forced to settle for an opening day point to set up the new season.
Full time: Burton Albion 0-0 Oxford United
Referee: Mr C. Pawson
Brewers: LEGZDINS, BOERTIEN, WEBSTER, STANTON, MCGRATH, MOORE, CORBETT, HARRAD (YOUNG 67), PENN, PEARSON, BOLDER (MAGHOMA 68). Subs: POOLE, JAMES, WALKER, ELLISON, PHILLIPS, MAGHOMA, YOUNG.
Oxford: CLARKE, BATT, TONKIN, BULMAN, WRIGHT, HESLOP, CONSTABLE, MIDSON (PHILLISKIRK 66), HALL, WORLEY, GREEN (DEERING 62). Subs: CREIGHTON, CLIST, BAKER, DEERING, EASTWOOD, FRANKS, PHILLISKIRK.