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Club News


17 March 2023

Club News


17 March 2023

Vale Park plays host to the Staffordshire Derby this weekend as Burton Albion travel across the A50 to face Vale on Saturday.

After spending much of the season fighting for survival, the Brewers now sit 18th in League One after a resurgence in 2023.

However, Albion slumped to a 5-2 loss at home to Peterborough United in midweek, meaning they stayed five points clear of the relegation zone.

The Valiants are currently three places, and six points above this Saturday’s visitors in the table, after a return to form in recent games.

Darrell Clarke’s side were minutes from victory at Fleetwood Town last weekend, but unfortunately, Jack Marriott bundled the ball home late on for the Lancashire side, meaning we had to settle for a point.

Saturday’s clash is sure to be a close affair, and here is what you need to know about the Brewers before we face them this weekend.

ONE TO WATCH: John Brayford

Once again it is not an attacker that is one to watch this weekend, instead, it is the Brewers club captain John Brayford, who is the player to keep an eye on.

The defender has once again had a strong campaign for the Brewers after cleaning up at the end-of-season awards last term for Burton, winning Players’ Player of the Season, Fans’ Player of the Season, and Player in the Community award.

The 34-year-old started his career off at the Brewers becoming the first graduate of their revamped academy when he turned professional for them in 2006.

Brayford then went on to play for a number of football league clubs, including the likes of Cardiff City, Sheffield United, and Derby County.

But, for the full-back, his heart always belonged in Staffordshire as he is now in his third spell with Burton, with his second being a loan in the 2016-17 season.

That loan move turned permanent in 2017, and from then on Brayford has never looked back, having made over 230 appearances since his return to the Brewers.

Brayford is an integral part of Albion’s side, with his performances being the shining light of a poor campaign in 2021/22,

The full-back is a fans’ favourite at the club, and even enjoyed a fairly prolific goal-scoring season by his standards last campaign, netting six goals, the highest return of his career.

The 35-year-old has netted twice in 32 appearances this term as he looks to captain his side to safety this season.

THE MAN AT THE HELM:  Dino Maamria

After just under two years as Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink’s right-hand man, Dino Maarmria took the role of manager at Burton Albion after the Dutchman’s resignation back in September 2022.

The 49-year-old has done well to steady the ship for the Brewers after a poor start to the campaign.

Maamria began coaching in 2007 towards the end of his 20-year playing career in which he featured for clubs such as Burnley, Doncaster Rovers, Stevenage, and Southport.

After his short tenure at Northwich Victoria as player-manager between 2007 and 2008, Maamria enjoyed two spells as Stevenage’s assistant manager, with a short period as the number two at Preston North End between.

Also on the Brewers boss’ CV are spells as gaffer at Southport, Nuneaton Town, Stevenage, and Oldham Athletic.

Now still in his first campaign as manager at Burton Albion, Maamria will be hoping his side have a strong finish to the season, however, Darrell Clarke will be hoping his Valiants can halt their progress on Saturday.


Vale wins: 3

Draws: 0

Burton wins: 2

The record between the two Staffordshire-based sides is a close one, but Vale just edge it, winning three of the last five meetings between the two Staffordshire teams.

Back in August, Vale came out on top when we faced the Brewers in their own Backyard, with goals from Ben Garrity and Ellis Harrison securing a 2-0 win that day.

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