Burton Albion

Profiling Leicester City’s First Pre-Season Opponents, Burton Albion

Leicester City are about to face their first test of the pre-season schedule, meeting Burton Albion at Pirelli Stadium on Saturday (3pm BST kick-off).
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Brendan Rodgers’ men travel to tackle the Sky Bet League 1 side following an initial two-week period of work at the stunning LCFC Training Ground in Seagrave, to help ensure that the Foxes hit the ground running when the new Premier League season kicks off.

The 2021/22 campaign begins on 14 August, 2021 as City welcome Wolverhampton Wanderers to King Power Stadium on matchday one.

Further friendly fixtures against Wycombe Wanderers and Queens Park Rangers await at the end of July, however, before welcoming Villarreal to King Power Stadium in early August.

With pre-season preparations now well underway, here’s a rundown of how Saturday's opposition, Burton Albion, shape up…

The story of 2020/21

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Hayden Carter
Hayden Carter

Centre-back Hayden Carter produced some impressive displays at the heart of Burton's defence during the second half of last season.

Jake Buxton entered the season as manager but after a disappointing first half of the campaign, winning just one league game before 24 November, the new year brought a new manager and a return for Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink.

Former Chelsea and Leeds United forward Hasselbaink brought in a host of new players, primarily on loan during the January transfer window, and the upturn in form was remarkable.

Albion stopped leaking goals following the arrival of on loan centre-back Hayden Carter from Championship side Blackburn Rovers and the 21-year-old eventually won the club’s Player of the Season award, despite only joining midway through the campaign.

Confirming survival with three games to spare, Burton eventually finished in 16th position in the third-tier standings with 57 points, 10 in front of the final relegation spot.

The manager

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Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink
Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink

The Brewers' manager is into his second stint in charge of the League 1 club.

Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink first led the club between 2014/15, guiding the Brewers to promotion from League 2 in just his second managerial role after leading Royal Antwerp in Belgium, and then departed with Albion sitting top of the table.

One year spells with Queens Park Rangers and Northampton Town followed, before his return to Pirelli Stadium in January. Second time around, rescuing the club from relegation was on the agenda, with Burton rooted to the bottom of the table upon his arrival.

The Dutchman managed to guide the club to League 1 safety during his second stint in charge of the club, but expectations may now be raised ahead of 2021/22, after the impressive performances produced since his appointment.

The stats

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Lucas Akins
Lucas Akins

Winger Lucas Akins was a reliable source of goals for the Brewers last season.

Over 75 per cent of Burton’s total points were gained in 2021, including a six-game winning streak during a memorable run between February to March, after also beating eventual champions Hull City and promoted side Peterborough United.

Forward Kane Hemmings was the star in attack, scoring 15 times in League 1, and was the only Albion player to hit double figures for league goals last season.

Joe Powell's six goals and nine assists from midfield, meanwhile, proved vital contributions, as were Lucas Akins' nine strikes from the wing. 

The signings

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Pirelli Stadium
Pirelli Stadium

Saturday's fixture will take place at Burton Albion's home ground, Pirelli Stadium.

This summer, the Brewers have already welcomed 11 new faces, including former Manchester United full-back Cameron Borthwick-Jackson, following his spell at Oldham Athletic.

Two further left-backs, Frazer Blake-Tracy and Thomas O’Connor, also arrive at Pirelli Stadium, alongside ex-Charlton Athletic centre-back Adedeji Oshilaja and midfielders Bryn Morris and Conor Shaughnessy, making his loan move permanent.

In attack, Omari Patrick and Louis Moult have joined the club, the latter from Preston North End, while on Friday, Burton confirmed the signing of 23-year-old striker Aaron Amadi-Holloway. And 21-year-old goalkeeper Ellery Balcombe is also in, on loan from Brentford. 

Meanwhile, 13 squad members from 2020/21 have departed, such as experienced former Premier League and Championship players Stephen Quinn, Neal Eardley and Luke Varney.

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