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7 October 2014

Johnstone's Paint Trophy 2nd Round

Burton Albion are still searching for their first win in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy after going out of this year's competition through a 3-0 defeat to League 1 side Doncaster Rovers. Lively winger Harry Forrester broke the deadlock just after the half hour mark and a Nathan Tyson penalty double Rovers lead before Richie Wellens put the gloss on the visitors performance with a third just before the end.

Within the confines of the competition rules Gary Rowett rang the changes for the team's first sojourn into the Johnstone's Paint Trophy. Dean Lyness returned to the line-up for his first appearance of the season and there was an opportunity for Dominic Knowles and Jacob Blyth to pair up in attack. Matty Palmer also came in to partner John Mousinho in midfield.

Albion certainly came out of the traps the quickest and Palmer saw an early chance deflected wide for a corner and with Albion keeping their visitors penned in Alex MacDonald forced another corner with a venomous shot from the edge of the box, forcing Jed Steer to parry wide. Knowles spurned another good chance when Lucas Akins saw a low shot blocked and as the ball came back to Knowles he had more time that he realised and hurriedly blazed over the bar.

Lyness had a minor scare when Phil Edwards' clearance was charged down with the ball rebounding across the penalty area, Albion's keeper on his toes to drop onto the ball before Nathan Tyson could react.

Doncaster began to bare their teeth and look a lot more lively in attack with skipper James Coppinger prominent. Seizing on a slight mistake at the back Coppinger nipped along the bye line and fizzed a great ball through the six yard box that failed to find a team mate. Minutes later he opted to go himself with a low shot that was easy for Lyness to save.

After a good spell of pressure Rovers took the lead on 33 minutes through their other winger who was also enjoying a promising half. Former Villa trainee Harry Forrester beat Edwards inside the Rovers half and burst towards goal. His cross was only half cleared by McCrory allowing Coppinger to seize possession. His dinked cross was headed clear by Sharps but only as far as Forrester who drilled a low shot through a crowded six yard box to open the scoring.

Three minutes before the break Rovers had a second as Tyson won and scored a penalty. The ex-Forest and Rams striker turned sharply on the edge of the box and then became the meat in a sandwich of Ian Sharps and John Mousinho, the latter bringing him down and he calmly got up to send a left footed shot comprehensively beyond Lyness.

Half time: Burton Albion 0-2 Doncaster Rovers

When Albion reappeared for the second period they showed two changes to the first half team. Damien McCrory, perhaps unsurprisingly, failed to reappear after his first run out for more than six months. George Taft came on as a straight replacement. Ian Sharps handed over the captains armband to Lee Bell who came on in centre midfield with John Mousinho dropping in at centre back.

The early minutes of the second half followed the same pattern as the first although MacDonald sent a delightful ball across the box that was just too far in front of Knowles and Blyth. Albion's best chance of the night then came on 58 minutes when Taft looked up and picked out his former Leicester team mate in Jacob Blyth who had a free header but failed to keep the ball down heading disappointingly over from twelve yards.

Five minutes later the loanee broke the offside trap onto Palmer's through ball but with just the keeper to beat he slid his shot across goal and wide of the far post.

Still needing a spark to get them back into the game Albion threw on Marcus Harness just inside the last twenty minutes in place of MacDonald.

Harness almost conjured up a goal for Knowles on 84 minutes with some trickery down the right that eventually resulted in a low cross. Knowles dug out a shot but was frustrated to see Jamie McCombe block the ball almost on the line.

Two minutes later and Albion conceded a third as substitute Theo Robinson threaded a pass for Richie Wellens who skipped past a couple of challenges to find himself one on one with Lyness before firing home.

Palmer forced a fingertip save from Steer with a free kick from range and from the corner Knowles saw his near post header come back off the post, a sure fire sign that it was not the Brewers night.

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