The Harriers dropped down to eleventh place in the table tonight and probably waved goodbye to their play-off hopes for this season. Luckily we still have the FA Trophy final to look forward to and with today's confirmation that it will be held at the all new Wembley Stadium we can now say "who want's the play-offs anyway cos' we're going to Wembley".
Tonight's game against promotion hopefuls saw a reprieve for Stuart Whitehead after it was believed that he would miss the game due to a red card against him at St Albans on Saturday. With his appearance on the pitch tonight many fans thought that maybe the one game ban wouldn't kick in until next Saturday now but it appears even that would have been wrong and it has now been wiped off all together.
James Constable didn't get any such luck in his appeal against a straight red card though and the three game punishment stands. In his place tonight came Luke Reynolds.
All of last weeks new signings were missing from the starting line-up with Jon Brady and Glenn Wilson on the bench and Andy Ferrell out all together with a minor injury. Simon Russell, Jeff Kenna and Gavin Hurren returned to the side.
There was little in the way of goalmouth action in the early stages of the contest but the Harriers appeared to have a good call for a penalty in the eighth minute after Michael Blackwood shook off Aaron Webster and made his way into the box where he went down under a challenge from Ryan Austin. Calls went up for a penalty but the referee waved those calls away and the ball was cleared to safety by Burton.
Our first real strike on goal came in the twentieth minute when Blackwood again got into a great position to meet a downward header from Iyseden Christie and then send a volley in towards the far post only to see the veteran Burton keeper, Kevin Poole, turn the ball away for a corner. Luke Reynolds got onto the end of the Jonny Harkness delivered corner but his header was cleared off the line by Walsall loanee Alec Nicholls.
Christie was the next to try his luck at testing the visiting keeper and sent in a curling shot that, again, Poole was equal to. The resulting corner came to nothing.
It took until midway through the half before we saw any kind of threat from Burton but Darryl Clare managed to break free from the attentions of Jeff Kenna to get onto Shaw’s header and send in a shot from the edge of the area that Steve Taylor didn't see coming till late and he only just managed to turn it around the post.
In the thirty fourth minute Mark Creighton picked up his fifth booking of the season for a late challenge on Paul Carden and soon after Danny Holmes was booked for kicking the ball away after conceding a free kick.
There was just the one chance after that for the Harriers and that fell for the lively Simon Russell after he showed great skill to rob Webster of the ball and then take it past him. His lobbed shot to the far post was only just gathered safely by Poole as he back peddled to get to it.