19 September 2023

Dino Maamria insists he never lost belief after Burton break duck at Port Vale

19 September 2023

Burton manager Dino Maamria said he never lost belief in his team ending their torrid start to the League One season after they beat high-flying Port Vale 3-2 to claim a first win at the eighth time of asking.

Watford loanee Kwadwo Baah scored what proved to be the decisive goal to deny Vale the point they needed to move to the top of the table.

“I’ve been emphasising that without winning a game in the last seven, we’re a good group of people, good group of staff and players, we believe in each other and it was always coming,” Maamria said.

“We’re going to win a lot of football matches together, no doubt about it.

“We had a tough start like everybody else, without going on about the ifs and the injuries we’ve had and everything else, but I know when we get this group of players going, we’re going to go on and win a lot of matches.

“But I’m really pleased for the group because they work so hard.

“When it was two weeks off, we did a lot of work and I thought overall it was a brilliant performance, a brilliant win.

“We showed a lot of quality on the ball, we scored three brilliant goals.

“We could have scored more.”

Burton took an 11th-minute lead when Beryly Lubala headed home at the back post to score his first goal for the club.

The home side responded well, though, and their pressure told in the 40th minute as Ben Garrity headed in off a post.

Burton went in front again six minutes after the restart as Steve Seddon poked the ball in from close range.

It got even better just after the hour mark, with Baah, making his full debut, rifling a shot into the net.

Ollie Arblaster halved the deficit in the 86th minute, but Burton held on for a much-needed win.

Port Vale boss Andy Crosby was left to rue his side’s performance off the ball as they suffered a first defeat in 10 matches in all competitions.

“I thought we made a poor start,” he said.

“We certainly lost too many individual aerial duels defensively from their goalkeeper’s kicks.

“We spoke pre-game about the threat of them from set plays, so I think we’ve given them opportunities.

“Not a good night in terms of when we haven’t had the ball, but a hell of a lot to be pleased with when we did have the ball.

“We created a lot of opportunities, we had shots on goal, shots on target, the keeper’s made saves, they’ve blocked things.

“We’ve created good opportunities but I think we’ve been looking to get better at that. So things to be happy with, but you can’t afford to give chances away like we did.

“You’ve got to win balls that come into your box.

“You’ve got to win individual duels, aerial duels, and we didn’t do it in the first half.”

The best videos delivered daily

Watch the stories that matter, right from your inbox