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Burton Albion star Alex MacDonald can build on his first goal in 18 months, says boss Gary Rowett

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: September 03, 2014

By Tom Sloan

FINISHED PRODUCT ... Albion boss would like winger Alex MacDonald to find the target more often.

FINISHED PRODUCT ... Albion boss would like winger Alex MacDonald to find the target more often.

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GARY Rowett wants to see more goals from Burton Albion winger Alex MacDonald after he netted a first in 18 months in the win at Mansfield.

The 23-year-old winger has scored twice in 65 appearances for the Brewers – but Rowett is hopeful the hard-working wide-man will soon find the net more regularly.

"I was going to rib him about his goal on Saturday and tell him it had gone down as an own goal!" said the manager after MacDonald's effort took two deflections on its way in.

"But seriously, I'm pleased about it because that's something I spoke to him about in the summer.

"I told him the reason he didn't make 45 starts last season was because he needed to get some goals and assists to add to his fantastic work rate and team play."

With Albion's defensive players not the most prolific goalscorers, more emphasis is put on the strikers and wingers to chip in with goals.

Two seasons ago, Jacques Maghoma had a terrific season of goalscoring from the left wing, but last season there was a shortage of goals from outside the striking department.

"It's hard to criticise someone like Alex when they work so hard for the team, but if you're in one of those front four positions for our team you've got to score goals," said Rowett.

"Our centre-backs don't score as many as we'd like from set pieces so it's vitally important the others do.

"He'll add that to his game. He scored one in pre-season and he's had lots of opportunities, is getting lots of chances and hopefully that'll give him confidence."

MacDonald has got the ability to be a real force in League Two, and Rowett says the former Burnley youth just needs to show it on the pitch.

"He's got the ability – if he didn't the ability then I'd have spoken to him by now and he probably wouldn't be here," said Rowett.

"He's got loads of ability.

"If you add someone with ability, and someone who's a young player – because he's only 23-24 – and someone who works that hard for the team, then you can't help wanting to keep playing them and keeping them in the team.

"I think he'll be complaining now that we've won every game he's started this season and he should retain his starting place.

"The lads are quite cute on the stats when they're left on the sidelines!"

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