29 December 2023

Gary Mills praises Burton’s ‘attitude and application’ after successive wins

29 December 2023

Burton interim manager Gary Mills was “proud” of his side after claiming back-to-back wins at the Pirelli Stadium with a hard-fought 1-0 success over Shrewsbury.

The home side took the lead with their first chance of the game, Joe Powell’s corner whipped perfectly onto the head of striker Beryly Lubala, who guided his effort into the back of the net on 16 minutes.

Mills said: “I’m absolutely delighted with the attitude and application of the boys over the Christmas period.

“The willingness to defend the goal as a unit is something we’ve been working on and we’re really proud.

“The game played out exactly as we planned for, we know they’re effective in what they do which makes us so proud is what we achieved as a group.”

Despite the narrow manner of the victory, Mills was particularly impressed with the quality his side showed in the defensive third of the pitch.

He added: “The lads put their bodies on the line and showed that want to keep the ball out of the net as well as the solidarity, spirit and togetherness.

“I’d hoped the forward players would help their defenders out and put the ball in the net a few more times but they’re warriors.

“The group are really together and they want to perform for each other and the football club which is fantastic.”

Shrewsbury boss Matt Taylor was disappointed with the nature of the defeat but wanted to highlight his players’ work-rate and commitment.

Taylor said: “I felt we did enough to win the game let alone lose it.

“I know it can’t be that a team only has to score one goal to beat us but we’re in a tough moment in terms of results but, more importantly, we’re in a really difficult spot in terms of available players.

“I can’t question the players’ effort but I can question the quality when we’re in those big moments when we get chances because the players have done it this season and we know they can do it.”

The Salop faithful were audibly upset with what they were seeing from their team and Taylor was keen to sympathise with the supporters.

He added: “I can hear their frustrations and I’ve got no issues with that but you have to understand where we are.

“This football club did really well last season with a different group of players and where we are now with the players we have available, we’re at full stretch.

“I knew the job would be tough but what I didn’t expect was all of these unforeseen issues where we would pick up injuries that you’d argue are some of our best players and make it really difficult for us.”

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