ALBION cruised through to the knockout stages of this season's Papa John's Trophy with a comprehensive 4-0 win over League Two side Bradford City
The Brewers produced a vibrant attacking display as Joe Powell's curling 20-yarder opened the game up after ten minutes and Victor Adeboyejo firing his eighth goal of the season on 20 minutes to put Albion firmly in charge.
There was no let up in the second half as a fantastic goal from Deji Oshilaja, curled in from outside the box and a first Albion goal from substitute Mustapha Carayol sealed a resounding victory.
Dino Maamria made six changes for the vist of the Bantams and with qualification for the knock-out stages of this season's Papa John's Trophy already assured. Viljami Sinisalo took over in goal and there were recalls for Cameron Borthwick-Jackson, Calum Butcher, Powell, Tyler Onyango and Charlie Lakin as the Brewers still went with a strong side but also offering a break to some of the senior players who have played a lot of football recently.
Visitors Bradford needed a positive result to qualify and made nine changes, looking to extend their winning away run to five games, a run stretching back to August and all in League Two.
Albion started off with a real purpose to their work. Pressing with intensity and causing problems for the Bantams defence. And their good early play was rewarded on ten minutes by a fine strike from POWELL. A corner on the right was played short to Lakin and he teed the ball up to Powell who measured his shot and curled a superb effort right into the top corner from twenty yards.
There was no sitting back on the lead as Adeboyejo volleyed over from an acute angle and the striker was almost in again moments later but left the ball to Davis Keillor-Dunn coming in from the left and his drive was deflected over the bar.
Bradford briefly threatened through Kian Harratt down the right but Albioj doubled their advantage when Onyango hustled the ball off Yann Songo'o straight into the path of ADEBOYEJO and the Brewers leading marksman this term made no mistake from ten yards.
Vadaine Oliver threatened to half City's arrears on 24 minutes latching onto a poor back pass but the striker was unable to avoid his shot clattering into Sam Hughes.
Bradford's best move of the half saw Jake Young exchange passes with Scott Banks before dragging a low shot through the six yard box as it trickled wide of the post.
Powell rippled the outside of the net with a couple of minutes to go to half time, an expansive move started by Adebyejo on half way seeing Keillor-Dunn picked out on the left before helping the ball on to Powell to drive into the box and shoot.
Half time: Burton Albion 2-0 Bradford City
Powell cpontinued to find space down the left in the early stages of the second half and one cheeky lob almost caught out City keeper Harry Lewis on fifty minutes but landed on the roof of the net as Albion sought a third goal.
Bradford began to look purposeful as they went in search of a goal to put the game back on a knifeedge but if Powell's opener could be described as pinpoint, it had nothing on Albion's third of the evening when the ball came out to OSHILAJA just outside the box and curled a stunning effort beyond Lewis into the top right hand corner.
Albion made a triple change after the hour mark, Hughes, Oshilaja and Adeboyejo getting a well earned breather as John Brayford, Adrian Mariappa and Carayol freshened up the Albion ranks.
It didnt take long for the subs to have an impact as a corner was swung into the Bradford six yard box and when it suddenly dropped loose CARAYOL was there to fire it home. The midfielder took no further part in the game as he was replaced by Jonny Smith before the game could kick-off again and Albion's final change saw Elliot Thorpe replace Tom Hamer at right back.
Smith looked dangerous down the left with a number of dangerous crosses but Albion were unable to add to their goal haul as they progressed from the group stages for the first time.
ALBION: Sinisalo; Hamer (Thorpe, 70), Hughes (Brayford, 64), Oshilaja (Mariappa, 64), Borthwick-Jackson; Onyango, Butcher; Powell, Lakin, Keillor-Dunn; Adeboyejo (Carayol, 64, Smith, 70).
Substitutes: Garratt, Taylor.
GOALS: ALBION - Powell (10), Adeboyejo (20), Oshilaja (57), Carayol (69)
Referee: Ollie Yates