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JON McLAUGHLIN FULL OF PRIASE FOR HIS TEAM-MATES

30 December 2016

JON McLaughlin has been ever-present for Burton Albion this season, and the former Bradford stopper has risen through the leagues with the Brewers.

The Scottish-born stopper has seen many players come and go at the Pirelli Stadium since his arrival back in 2014, and he was full of praise for his team in last night’s 2-1 victory over Rotherham United at the AESSEAL New York Stadium.

He was particularly impressed with the hard work of front-man Chris O’Grady, who scored his first Albion goal last night: “We have seen it over the last couple of years with Bevs (Beavon). That’s what we ask our strikers to do, they have to be up there and work incredibly hard for us and do a lot of the dirty work.

“They (strikers) are the unsung heroes because it’s not chance after chance being set on the plate for them, they have got to do a hell of a lot more for us and that’s what Chris (O’Grady) has been doing this year.

“It’s great for him to get the reward and get himself a goal and for it to come on a night where it gives us massive win.”

Jackson Irvine was on the score sheet last night as he netted his 8th of the season, and another with his head.

Jon McLaughlin said: “That’s one of his massive strengths. When you’ve got a fantastic ball-playing midfield player, he works incredibly hard and can do the defensive side just as well as the attacking side, he is almost the whole package and then suddenly you see he is one of biggest threats in the box going forward.

“He’s our top scorer and that completes the package for him, that makes him a fantastic prospect and it’s brilliant for us that we’ve managed to land him at the start of the season. He’s going to be massive for us all year.”

John Brayford, on loan from Sheffield United, took a knock to the head towards the latter stages of the first half and the attacking full back came off at half time as a precaution.

It was a good job he did come back onto the field after treatment, as seconds later he provided the cross for Jackson Irvine to head in off the under side of the crossbar.

“He probably shouldn’t have come back on,” said McLaughlin. “It was a real hard hit that he took, it really rocked him but luckily he was still sound enough in the head to whip in a ball like that.

“It was a heavy challenge going for the ball in our second goal, he was shaken up but I’m sure he will recover from that.”

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