LOSS OF POINTS IS NOT A HAS­SEL

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Matthew Bam­sey

JIMMY Floyd Has­sel­baink claimed Carl McHugh’s late equaliser should not have stood as Bur­ton’s lead at the top was cut to a sin­gle point.

The Brew­ers boss in­sists Lu­cas Akins was pushed as McHugh headed home from close range to move Ply­mouth back into the play-off places.

Has­sel­baink’s ta­ble-top­pers were on course for all three points when Kevin Ste­wart, on loan from Liver­pool, marked his de­but with a de­flected goal on 33 min­utes.

But joy turned to frus­tra­tion as the Pil­grims grabbed a lev­eller, much to the fury of Has­sel­baink.

He moaned: “It was a bla­tant push. Why else would Lu­cas go down? It is tough to take but you can’t con­trol it.

“I can go and find the ref­eree and tell him it was a foul, but we have to live with it. We are still in a good po­si­tion and we can’t cry about two lost points. We have to keep go­ing and try and beat Wy­combe on Mon­day.”

McHugh’s equaliser means Bur­ton are one point clear of Shrews­bury Town at the sum­mit and boast an eight-point cush­ion on fourth­placed Bury.

And goalscorer Ste­wart says he would love noth­ing more than help­ing Bur­ton clinch pro­mo­tion.

Ste­wart added: “I am re­ally happy get­ting the goal but it was a shame we con­ceded an equaliser.

“We felt com­fort­able and I couldn’t see them scor­ing. It is a hor­ri­ble way to con­cede via a set-piece. But we need to keep go­ing be­cause we are in a great po­si­tion. It would be great to help Bur­ton get there – that would mean ev­ery­thing to me.”

Ply­mouth en­gi­neered the first de­cent chance when Lewis Alessan­dra crossed for Gethin Jones and the on-loan mid­fielder struck a shot straight into the legs of Jon McLaugh­lin. Bobby Reid res­cued Ply­mouth on 15 min­utes af­ter he blocked Shane Cans­dell-Sher­riff’s header on the line.

But there was noth­ing the hosts could do about the opener as Ste­wart col­lected the ball 25 yards out and hit a shot that took a de­flec­tion off McHugh be­fore go­ing in via the in­side of the post.

Ply­mouth came close to an equaliser eight min­utes into the sec­ond half with a well­re­hearsed train­ing ground move.

Bobby Reid rolled a free-kick into the path of Reuben Reid and he peeled away from his marker be­fore rat­tling the post.

Ply­mouth rarely threat­ened an equaliser un­til the 86th minute when Bobby Reid swung over a cor­ner and McHugh neatly headed home from close range.

Ply­mouth boss John Sheri­dan said: “I thought it was tight, not a lot be­tween the two teams. A draw was a fair re­sult.

“They are very well or­gan­ised. They get men be­hind the ball, keep their shape and some­times you have got to be pa­tient.

“We didn’t play great but we kept plug­ging away and got our re­wards in the end.We are still in there. Bur­ton are well known for get­ting 1-0 re­sults and for us to come back against the side at the top of the ta­ble shows a lot of char­ac­ter. It could be very valu­able.”

PIC­TURES: Pin­na­cle

McHUGH ON CUE: Carl McHugh grabs his goal

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