Super sub Billy holds Kee for Brewers
BURTON striker Billy Kee stepped off the bench to net his tenth goal of the season and rescue a point against ten-man Dagenham.
The Brewers fell behind on the stroke of half-time as on-loan Reading midfielder Lawson D’Ath opened the scoring with a stunning 25-yard strike.
But after Daggers leftback Jack Connors had been sent off for a second yellow card, Kee grabbed the equaliser to keep the Brewers in the hunt for automatic promotion.
“We’re disappointed we couldn’t go on and get a second but it could prove to be a good point for us,” said Burton assistant manager Kevin Summerfield.
“We talked before the game about how important it is to get the first goal. That’s something we haven’t been doing this season but we are still grinding out results.
“We have watched Dagenham quite a bit recently and they are a really resilient team. They are a lot tougher than they were last season and they have a lot of character about them.”
D'Ath’s strike with just seconds of the first half remaining was a rare moment of quality in a scrappy first 45 minutes. Dagenham were content to let Burton have the lion’s share of the possession but visiting keeper Chris Lewington had little to do.
Matty Palmer squandered the Brewers best chance when he rifled into the side netting while Adam McGurk saw an effort cleared off the line by Connors.
D'Ath’s rocket was enough to encourage a little more urgency from Burton in the second half though and momentum swung their way on 54 minutes when Connor saw red for a second bookable offence following a clumsy challenge on Zeli Ismail.
Brewers boss Gary Rowett responded almost immediately by throwing on Kee and the striker repaid that faith to turn home the equaliser.
With a numerical advantage, Burton were camped in the Daggers half late on but the closest they came to a winner was when Robbie Weir struck a post in injury time. Daggers boss Wayne Burnett said:“The sending off changed the game. We were more than a match for them at 11 versus 11.
“Jack was maybe a bit naïve but he’s fresh from the youth team and he’ll learn. It changed the complexion of the game – it’s hard enough at Burton with 11 men but its even more difficult with ten.
“It was backs to the wall at the end but my players have a never-saydie attitude and they showed fantastic character.”
STAR MAN ZELI ISMAIL