ALBION kicked off their Papa John's Trophy campaign with a 4-2 win over Leicester City under 21's with Gassan Ahadme bagging a brace for the second game in a row.
The striker made a lightning start, just as he had done on Saturday firing home in the fourth minute and in a crazy, breath taking opening to the game Albion were four goals to the good inside twelve minutes as Ahadme helped himself to a second before Victor Adeboyejo netted his first Albion goal with a header and Joe Powell calmly finished.
Two goals in a minute from Leicester towards half time threatened to make things nervy for Albion but a goalless second half ensured Albion got off to a winning start.
Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink stuck to his word of putting out a strong side although there were still four changes from the weekend defeat to Cambridge United. Viljami Sinisalo returned in goal and Deji Oshilaja was drafted into a back three. Powell also returned to the side in an attacking midfield role and Adeboyejo was restored to the side to partner Ahadme in attack.
Albion made a positive start and pressure from AHADME saw Lewis Brunt surrender possession on the edge of his own box allowing the Albion striker to take a touch before drilling a low shot through the legs of keeper Chituru Odunze for his third goal in two games.
Looking to capitalise on their good start the Brewers almost had a second when Powell volleyed onto the roof of the net. The second goal was only moments away though as Tom Hamer was afforded time to cross from the rignt and AHADME timed his run to perfection to get above his man for a downward header that Odunze was powerless to stop finding the back of his net.
The Leicester youngsters were shellshocked and two minutes later they were three behind as ADEBOYEJO was left unmarked at the back post to head home when Terry Taylor's free kick was headed down into his path by Sam Hughes.
Albion's high press paid dividends again with only twelve minutes on the clock, Calum Butcher this time winning the ball high up the pitch and feeding Ahadme who flicked the ball into the path of POWELL who instinctively chipped the ball over Odunze.
Powell almost had his second of the night midway through the half with a wickedly curling free kick that only just went the wrong side of the post after Ahadme had been stopped in his tracks from bursting through on goal again.
On the hour half Leicester were inches away from a goal that might have started a comeback. Tavanda Maswanhise was able to unleash a shot that cannoned back off the inside of the post back out to him and his follow-up effort was well saved by Sinisalo before the ball was scrambled clear.
Maswanhise did get the next goal of the game on 38 minutes when Sammy Braybrooke did well to spin away from his man to allow himself to burst forwards before sliding the ball through to the Foxes striker who, despite the advances of Sinisalo, showed good composure the curl the ball into the corner of the goal. And a second Leicester goal was not long in coming when a low cross evaded Maswanhise in the middle but came to FITZHUGH who took a touch before firing in despite Sinisalo's efforts to save.
Half time: Burton Albion 4-2 Leicester City U21s
It was a purposeful start to the second half from the Brewers as they made inroads down the Leicester right, Ahadme just unable to get above a lovely Powell cross to divert it goalwards
But a loose pass allowed Fitzhugh to strike for goal on 56 minutes and Albion were grateful that Sinisalo stood tall to beat the ball away from danger.
Albion were next to threaten when John Brayford was encouraged to surge forwards with nobody closing him down and the skipper was unlucky to see his shot from distance rebound off the post.
Midway through the half Albion turned to their bench and the young legs of Quevin Castro and Tyler Onyango were summonsed to replace JOhn Brayford and Butcher.
Charlie Lakin also got a late run out, replacing Powell and he was close to a quick impact when the ball dropped to him from a corner and through a crowded box he lifted his shot just wide of the post.
Albion finished the game with ten men when Castro was shown a second yellow card for kicking the ball away in stoppage time having picked up an earlier card not long after coming on. It mattered little as there was only time for Leicester to take the free kick which amounted to nothing.
ALBION: Sinisalo; Brayford (Castro, 65), Hughes, Oshilaja; Hamer, Butcher (Onyango, 65), Taylor, Borthwick-Jackson; Powell (Lakin, 78); Adeboyejo, Ahadme.
Substitutes: Garratt, Keillor-Dunn, Smith, Gilligan.
GOALS: ALBION - Ahadme (4, 7). Adeboyejo (9), Powell (12) ; LEICESTER - Maswanhise (38), Fitzhugh (39)
Referee: Adam Herczeg