RAMBLE | Burton 1-1 Wednesday

RAMBLE | Burton 1-1 Wednesday

After last week’s maiden win over Fulham, the trip to Burton felt like a great chance to put back to back wins together and start to build towards a push for the top two.

Having said that, Burton isn’t an easy place to go and last season saw our worst away performance of the season when they won 3-1.

Nigel Clough is a smart manager and has built an impressive championship side.

Any away day needs to start with a good breakfast.

And I decided to go for a meat free option, partly for a change and partly because we didn’t have any meat sausages or bacon in.

Quorn Bacon

So, it consisted of tomatoes cooked in a little garlic and olive oil (a little middle class, I know, but who cares?), mushrooms, fried egg, 2 Quorn sausages and 2 slice of Quorn bacon, the ‘bacon’ being a first for me.

I’ve had the sausages on plenty of occasions and prefer them to a lot of cheap standard meat sausages. But bacon is sacred and cannot be substituted. It looks more like luncheon meat and doesn’t really taste of much.

Still it was a good breakfast and I was set for the day.

As I left the house to meet James for the walk to the train station, I realised it was a lot brighter than I anticipated and contemplated going back for sunglasses.

I have a habit of losing sun glasses on football days so decided against it. We started putting the world to rights and agreed that today needs to be part of a good run that sends us up the table.

We both agreed that the negativity around the club has largely been unfair of recent performances and the team’s credit for winning at Fulham was undone by a poor result at Bolton.

Obviously, it would’ve been nice to have won there but our season is not going to be defined by how we played in the second round of the League Cup.

Nor is the significance of four games, even if they’ve come at the start of the season. The importance of the start to the season is often over emphasised.

As we got to the station, I headed to the Sheffield Tap to buy the first round of the day and James headed into the station to pick up our train tickets.

I got there to find a Wild Beer Company Citra IPA at 3.6%. Perfect. Just as I paid for the round, New York James turned up, so I added a beer to the round and we headed outside for a pint in the sun and watch the world go by before our train.

The time soon flew and it was time to head for the train, where a fair few Wednesdayites were already gathered trip to the East Midlands.

Sheffield Tap

As the train arrived we realised we were at the opposite end of the platform for our carriage, so it was a case of ‘excuse me, coming through, excuse me…’

We found our seats, set off and New York James unloaded an array of craft beer cans in what was the most middle class bag I’ve ever seen. A Waitrose bag for life, with craft ale covered in foil to keep them cold. He said he basically recreated a fridge and it worked!

They were very good beers to which passed the 45-minute journey down to Burton very quickly. It was so quick that I’d missed the chance to relieve my bladder.

I thought I’d use the station toilets. As we got to Burton, the station was surprisingly small and I couldn’t see a toilet.

James also needed to record something for the Channel5 show tonight that he’d have to send in as New York James and I waited as he recorded.

But at this point my bladder was aching and I didn’t fancy a desperate walk so handed my can over and decided to explore if there were toilets – thankfully they’re on the platform! Relief …

By the time I got back, James had finished recording and we headed to the first pub, which was a cracking micro pub with a great range of craft beers for us to sample and a big beer garden to enjoy them in with the sun.

Welcome to Burton

As nice as the sun was, I started to regret the lack of sun glasses as it was very bright and rub it in, the other two had sun glasses, so I just had to squint.

It’s a nice problem to have and given some of the grey weather of late, it wasn’t one that I was complaining too much about!

There was no complaining about the beer either which despite each one coming from cans, came with a nice glass and each was of the highest quality.

Soon enough 2pm came and with it team news. Forestieri was on the bench and was the same team that played at Fulham, which was the right decision.

And with that we finished our beers and headed for the ground in time to have a beer before the game and rendezvous with Mark and Tom who were coming by car.

Burton is a funny place in terms of shape, because it’s not very big and everything is within about half an hour’s walk but it is long, so everything is basically along a long main road.

We found the ground, found Mark and Tom, then got into the ground by 2.35, so plenty of time for a beer. It was my round so I try and walk through the door to the bar, only to be stopped … BAR’S CLOSED MATE … well that’s that then.

Destination

So, we headed for stands and took our position on the terrace. I do like a proper terrace.

 

THE MATCH

 

We didn’t start this game strongly and Burton were on top with Martin Sordell looking a handful.

Within the first five minutes he’d had some clear chances to score.

We were not really at the races and didn’t look very creative at all. That said there were some half chances to Reach and Boyd.

We were lucky to be level.

Throughout the first half hour we had very little control or dominance on the game and spent most of it fending off Burton attacks. Then around the half hour mark, Sordell fouled Westwood who was down injured for quite some time.

After he was down for a couple of minutes, the Burton fans decided that he was time wasting and started to boo him. This is utterly disgusting behaviour.

Why would we waste time at 0-0, half an hour into a first half when we’re not playing well? I was appalled at the lack of respect shown by Burton’s fans and they showed that they’re actually classless.

Eventually, he got back on his feet and despite Wildsmith being ready to come on, Westy carried on.

But that only lasted for a few minutes and before long, he was off and Wildsmith on.

Not long after the sub, we started to play a little and Fletcher burst in the box and found Hunt on the by-line – crossed … GOAL

PANDAMONIUM!!!!!!!!!

GET THE CHUFF IN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Goal

Shortly after this New York James left to do the half time beer duties.

I actually felt bad because they’d be a while yet with so much time to add on for the Westwood injury.

As expected there was seven minutes added on – come on let’s just see this out.

There was more good play between Reach, Bannan and Boyd (starting to click?) and they found Boyd in the box who scored!! GET IN!

I grabbed Mark but it was a free kick to Burton. BOLLOX. Offside. And from where we were watching it was impossible to judge whether it was or not. That goal would’ve killed the game.

Wednesday saw the added time off without much drama and it was half time.

I went down to find James with beer, assuming that he’s already got the beer and is waiting for us. I walk through and he’s nowhere to be seen. This is odd.

Then I realise that he’s still queuing – and some distance from the bar! Eventually he creeps forward and we get a beer and discuss. We’re happy to be ahead but lucky that we’ve not conceded. A big chance to really advance our season now…

 

SECOND HALF

 

The half started as you’d expect with Wednesday looking to consolidate and Burton pushing for an equaliser.

It wasn’t that long ago that we seemed to play our best football when the other team attacked us, but it feels like there’s a lack of energy and creativity amongst the team at the moment.

Wildsmith made a good save from Scannell.

The Pirelli

Burton made their first change with Mason coming on as they had a throw in on the right-hand side.

It was a long throw, we lost the header and it fell for Mason to score. 1-1.

Absolutely dreadful defending and not good enough.

We huffed and puffed for a reply but not much happened until Rhodes and Wallace came on for Fletcher and Boyd.

Then we seemed to get some energy and made an impact. Pudil had a looping header that was destined for the net but cleared off the line.

Now. The referee. The same referee that had already allowed Sordell to take out Westwood’s knee.

Pudil: centre half?

The same referee that disallowed a very tight offside goal. This referee was the worst that we’ve had for some time.

Burton were stretched and their response was to foul and kick our players.

Fine, if that’s how they want to play but the referee, not only allowed them but gave them a free kick for doing so. For attack after attack we were stopped by crazy “fouls” being given against us.

How can we attack and play football when the referee is given them free kicks for nothing and allowing our players to be kicked?

Despite this Jones had the chance to win the game with a header from five yards but couldn’t get it on target and the chance was gone.

There wasn’t much to speak of afterwards, mainly because each time we attacked the referee decided that it was a Burton free kick.

It was basically against the rules for us to attack.

By the end of the game large parts of the crowd were fuming with the referee and rightly so.

After the final whistle Carlos was having a go at the referee and rightly so. That said in large parts of the game we were too passive and conceded another sloppy goal.

Trouble at mill…

As far as I see the reasons for our frustrations lies in whoever is in charge of transfers at the club (we know it’s not Carlos) and is some committee whom we have no idea is on it.

We spent all of last season knowing that we didn’t have enough cover at the back.

We’ve since let players go and signed nobody. In football, everything starts with a solid defence. You can’t attack with a solid defence, the most attacking teams, often have resolute defences.

We are where we are but until we have a proper defence (Daniel Pudil is not a centre half) we will continue to stumble.

Anyway, we came out of the ground, James did another piece for Channel5 on his phone and we headed back towards the station / a pub that we could see.

We stumbled across a nice-looking pub but with very poor beer choices: bitter, lager or a wheat beer.

Coming soon

Three wheat beers and three pints of water later, we just put the game to rites and looked forward to an international break, after which we have Forest, Leeds, a Neil Warnock team and Sheffield United!

We headed back to the micro pub in just enough time for a beer before the train back.

And before long we were back in Sheffield back in the Sheffield Tap for one last beer before calling it a night.

New York James went off and James and I headed back to Sharrow Vale, via the Beer Engine for a couple more before stumbling home.

All in all a good day that would’ve been perfect but for a lacklustre performance, a disallowed second goal, the worst referee that we’ve had for a long time, a dodgy defence and a David Jones header that went up and not straight.

OWLS ALIVE circliar yeller SPACE

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JP

Owls Alive
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Images: SWFC and JP


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