Nigel Clough targeting promotion with Burton next season
Burton boss Nigel Clough hopes a good end to the current season will set his side up for a crack at promotion next term.
Goals from Kieran Wallace, Lucas Akins and Liam Boyce earned the Brewers a comfortable 3-0 success at relegation-threatened Scunthorpe.
And although four wins in five matches has come too late for a play-off push this time around, Clough believes it can serve them well going into the summer.
‘The nice thing at the moment is that we’re playing with confidence,’ he said.
‘It’s alright being where we are now in the table – not sweating on anything – but this is how you have to play when there is something riding on it, which there will be from the opening day of next season.
‘The aim now is to finish as high up the league as we can with as many points as we can.
‘We’ll try to win our last four games so the players go away in confident mood and are looking forward to coming back next season.
‘You saw a team today that was confident and playing well and one that is fighting relegation, and we know how that feels as we’ve done it for two years in the Championship.
‘It’s not a nice situation to be in, but we’ve had to come and take advantage of it.
‘I thought we controlled and dominated the game and it was a deserved victory.
‘ Having dominated the opening half an hour, Burton went in front six minutes before half-time when Wallace’s header found the back of the net via the inside of the post.
Two goals in six second-half minutes then put the game to bed – Akins stealing in front of his marker to double the visitors’ lead before Boyce’s cross looped over Iron keeper Jak Alnwick and into the top corner.
With four games to save their season, Scunthorpe caretaker boss Andy Dawson wants the Iron to show some mettle to stave off the threat of being sucked into the bottom four.
He said: ‘It’s a difficult task to keep everyone positive, but it’s something we’ve got to do.
‘We’re not going to hide from the trouble we’re in, but today we had to show more bite.
It’s up to everyone to stick together and demand more from each other.
‘I thought it looked like there was a bit of fear about us today, but we were also beaten by a much better team if I’m totally honest.
‘I’ve said to the players ‘whatever happens to you as a footballer, you have to hit it head on.
Your career is soon over, don’t have any regrets’.
‘We all make mistakes in life, but don’t let it make you afraid to try things and express yourself.
‘Today we weren’t brave in possession and didn’t create enough quality.
Against a team in the form that Burton are in, if you give them the ball you’re going to be in trouble.’