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Season 2016-17
Burton Albion (a)

In association 


Saturday 17th December 2016, 3.00pm

 Pirelli Stadium

Conditions: Unconvincing

Admission: £24 seats, £20 standing


Burton Albion

Newcastle United

1 - 2




15 mins A scything ball from Jonjo Shelvey cut open the Albion defence and Matt Ritchie slipped his marker to reach the byline. His low cross from the left was expertly flicked home from close in by Dwight Gayle via a touch from Kyle McFadzean in front of the standing away following.

McFadzean looked to have knocked Gayle over earlier in the move, but the Magpies number 9 was quickly back on his feet and earned his reward

20 mins The Brewers took advantage of some sloppy defending down the Newcastle left and John Brayford swapped passes with Jackson Irvine before sending over a bobbling cross. That was intended for Lucas Akins but ended up at the feet of Lloyd Dyer, who had snuck behind DeAndre Yedlin to convert at the far post. 1-1

34 mins With plenty of time to weigh up his options, Jamaal Lascelles picked out Gayle with a forward pass to a central area. His first time flick played in Mo Diame, who confidently turned Damien McCrory and slipped the ball past Jon McLaughlin.

Following muted responses to recent efforts at former sides Hull and Wigan, Diame's celebrations were rather more exuberant on this occasion.

Half time: Brewers 1 Magpies 2

Full time: Brewers 1 Magpies 2

We Said


Rafa said afterwards:


"We said before that it could be difficult and it was so I think we did well. We controlled the first half and were working so hard in the second half to defend and do well.

"I was pleased with the attitude, the teamwork and the character that we showed but I also congratulate them because they were pushing us under massive pressure.

"We are top of the table, doing well and winning lots of games and we have had fantastic games and then we have games where we have to show, as we did today, lots of character. I think we are finding the balance between playing nice football and having to work hard for the three points.

"(We adapted) really well, because Wigan was another test, a different one, and this one was even harder and we did well.

“To see players working as hard as they were, trying to compete in the air and hold the ball, play counter attack, defend and clear, we have players who are learning to play in this division, so it is really important for any team." 

They Said

Brewers boss Nigel Clough said:


"A couple of errors in the lead-up to their goals has cost us but apart from that I thought our lads were outstanding today, in everything that they did. Their effort and honesty shines through to us but alongside that today they played with quality.

"We have put two great performances together in the last four days and got no points and I think that will change in the second half of the season.

"I hope we can stay out of it for the next four months as well. We are going to try everything we can to do it, but it's not easy when you are battling against the likes of Newcastle. As long as the players keep giving everything, as they did today, we will stick by them."



Win number nine on the road this season - three more than next highest Brighton and Hove Albion. It's just three short of the 12 achieved in our last promotion campaign.

Dwight Gayle notched number 17 for the season from his 17 starts in the league. That's the same as our highest scorers, Andy Carroll and Kevin Nolan from the 2009/10 Championship season.

Newcastle won a competitive game for the first time wearing their nominal white and purple second kit, following the penalty shootout defeat in the EFL Cup at Hull City.

United faced Burton Albion for the very first time, making it three clubs from the town that they have played against, after Burton Swifts and Burton Wanderers. The two clubs would merge to become Burton United but their brief stay in the Football League (1901-07) didn't include any meetings against Newcastle.

Magpies @ Burton - all-time:

2016/17 Burton Albion 1-2 Newcastle
1897/98 Burton Swifts 3-1 Newcastle
1896/97 Burton Wanderers 0-1 Newcastle
1896/97 Burton Swifts 3-0 Newcastle
1895/96 Burton Wanderers 0-3 Newcastle
1895/96 Burton Swifts 3-1 Newcastle
1894/95 Burton Wanderers 9-0 Newcastle
1894/95 Burton Swifts 5-3 Newcastle
1893/94 Burton Swifts 3-1 Newcastle

(All games in Division Two or equivalent)

Newcastle's debut here means that 16 of the current 92 league grounds still remain to be visited by us for a first team fixture (either competitive or friendly):

Bristol Rovers
Colchester United
Crawley Town*
Fleetwood Town
MK Dons 
Newport County
Northampton Town
Oxford United
Shrewsbury Town
West Ham
Wycombe Wanderers

*United have played here at reserve/junior team level

(Rochdale is omitted from the list as United played a War Cup tie at Spotland during 1941)





After an absence of almost exactly 119 years, Newcastle belatedly returned to the Staffordshire town of Burton upon Trent to notch up the victory that rounded off another successful week.

The vagaries of the fixture list meant that United had kicked off both of their previous games in second position behind Brighton - only to then secure the victories that put us back on pole.

Today though saw both sides playing old-fashioned 3pm Saturday matches; our winning scoreline matched by Chris Hughton's side 30 miles away at Birmingham City to ensure that Rafa Benitez is number one at Christmas. 

The smallness of the venue and tangible anticipation among both sets of fans made this a
Cup tie atmosphere; an over-excited PA chap roaring his head off and pumping out Nessum Dorma at wax-shifting volume and Newcastle fans joining in when a snatch of old favourite "Tom Hark" was played after Burton's goal. 

Good finishes from Dwight Gayle and Mo Diame in the first half gave United the victory
, but for a good proportion of the afternoon their lead wasn't a secure one and unlike the midweek success at Wigan, the two goal cushion was never secured.

In-form Dwight Gayle shot his side ahead and then helped them regain the lead with a cute touch to set up Mo Diame, but they were rare efforts on goal on a pitch that seemed to cause us some stability problems. Diame also looked to be feeling the effects of three starts in a week: it can be argued that Rafa is getting maximum benefit from the player before he decamps to the Nations Cup in a few weeks, but a reluctance to play Aleksandar Mitrovic seems evident.

Christian Atsu had replaced Yoan Gouffran in the starting line-up and had wasted one early chance before Gayle struck. However that lead only lasted five minutes before veteran former West Bromich Albion and Leicester City man Lloyd Dyer beat Karl Darlow.

The battling Brewers seemed to have collated the same set of scouting notes as Wigan and focused their attentions on Paul Dummett at left back, but lacked craft or quality and failed to build up a real head of steam during what was a scrappy second half.

There were several nervy moments; Darlow spilling one effort and several balls pumped into our box with Akins blazing over when well placed. Gayle snatched at a chance which flew high and wide in what was almost our sole excursion into the Albion box that half, but it remained 2-1.


The final whistle saw United exit the pitch to the strains of "Local Hero" over the Tannoy (echoing Plymouth's gesture the night the Championship was won in 2010). Next up for the players was a Christmas party and some rest & relaxation after a grueling eight days that brought nine points. 

Victories here and at Wigan weren't as stylish or emphatic as some may have predicted, but that winning habit has been maintained thanks to a couple of classy interludes and some no-nonsense defending. One look at the league table confirms that to be a powerful combination.  


Page last updated 15 June, 2017