THE Brewers lined up with nine first-team professionals against a strong Bradford team at St George’s Park in the Development League.Damien McCrory captained the side which included Hamza Choudhury, Stuart Beavon and Ryan Delaney.
Five second half goals and a hat trick from Joe Sbarra ensured the reserve team got off to a winning start in this season’s development league.
The game got off to a fast start and Burton enjoyed most of the ball, until Bradford hit a quick counter-attack which resulted in a free kick on the edge of the box after McCrory brought down the attacker and received a yellow card. The resulting freekick wasn’t far away, it just skimmed the outside of the post and went wide.
The eventual hat trick hero Joe Sbarra was denied brilliantly midway into the first half. He got on the end of a cross from Marcus Harness down the right but Sbarra’s volley from 12 yards was excellently saved but the Bradford ‘keeper.
Bradford had a half chance not so long after Sbarra’s effort. The lively attacked picked the ball up from 40 yards and attempted a chip over Campbell but the ball only found its way over the crossbar.
HT: Burton Albion 0-0 Bradford
Three minutes into the second half Joe Sbarra grabbed his first of three goals. He lined up a shot from the edge of the box which somehow found its way under the goalkeeper and over the line to put the Brewers in front (1-0).
Just nine minutes later it was the young midfielder again that popped up with the goal, this one was a little simpler. Marcus Harness worked his way down the right before providing the cross in which Sbarra made no mistake by tapping home (2-0).
Stuart Beavon thought he had scored just past the hour mark when he tried a crafty header at goal, but he was denied by the outside of the post.
Marcus Dinanga added a third for the Brewers with 20 minutes to go thanks to some super work from Stuart Beavon. The Albion number nine won the ball some 25 yards out before sliding it through to Dinanga who slotted calmly past the goalkeeper (3-0).
Burton made a double substitution on the 75 minute mark as Dylan Garnett and Reece Hutchinson came on for Stuart Beavon and Hamza Choudhury.
It took ten minutes for the sub to make his mark and for Joe Sbarra to grab an assist. The midfielder slid the ball through to Garnett who advanced into the box and rifled the ball into the roof of the net (4-0).
Two minutes later the game was defiantly over, if it wasn’t already. Marcus Harness was brought down in the box, the referee blew for the penalty in which Joe Sbarra picked up the ball and slotted cooly into the opposite corner to the goalkeeper (5-0).
Nigel Clough said: "Stuart (Beavon) wanted to have a run around. Some of the lads haven’t played much with the international break and it’s great when the say I want to play 60 or 70 minutes."