BURTON ALBION 2
DAGENHAM & REDBRIDGE 1
BURTON Albion completed a fantastic late turnaround at the Pirelli Stadium today as two Billy Kee goals in the final six minutes earned them victory over Dagenham & Redbridge.
After describing Tuesday night's win over Wigan Athletic as the best of his managerial career, Gary Rowett would surely have placed today's first-half performance much further down the list.
And the Brewers were made to pay for their sloppiness in the 18th minute when Jamie Cureton got through on goal after a missed header, and finished well past Jon McLaughlin.
But they were much better after the break, and especially after Rowett changed personnel and formation, with two of those substitutes creating both the equaliser and the winner.
First Harness won the penalty which Kee scored, before setting up the popular striker to curl home the winner and make it three wins from the first three games.
Rowett made just one change from the side who rose to see of Wigan Athletic in the League Cup in midweek, with Dominic Knowles replacing the injured Adam McGurk (back) up front.
Ashley Hemmings - who spent time on loan last season - returned to the Pirelli Stadium as part of a three-pronged Daggers attack.
Dagenham endured a taxing cup clash against Brentford in midweek, losing on penalties after 120 minutes and TWELVE goals in a 6-6 draw.
An early scare for the Brewers saw Ashley Chambers allowed to drive at the heart of their defence before letting fly a shot that McLaughlin held comfortably.
And the Daggers took the lead in the 18th minute, as a ball down the line saw Hemmings beat Ian Sharps to the ball and Cureton was in to slot past McLaughlin.
Burton's first effort of note came in the 25th minute, when an expertly lobbed cross from Beavon was nodded on by Knowles to Alex MacDonald, who cut onto his right foot before seeing his shot charged down.
The winger then returned the favour, as great work from Lucas Akins set him free down the left, and he clipped a cross onto the head of Beavon, who nodded over.
A good spell of pressure that saw Albion switching the ball from side to side, ended with Beavon nodding Phil Edwards' cross down to Akins, who fired over.
Burton looked to have better shape at the start of the second half, MacDonald seeing his shot saved before a goalmouth scramble somehow did not even produce a shot, never mind a goal.
But the Daggers' pacy forward line still posed problems on the break, Abu Ogogo finding himself with time to curl a shot just wide of goal.
Just before the hour mark, a MacDonald corner was played to the edge of the box, where John Mousinho thundered a volley over the bar.
Rowett rang the changes soon after that, Kee replacing Knowles and Matty Palmer coming on for MacDonald as the Brewers matched their opponents' 4-3-3.
The switch in personnel and formation seemed to improve the Brewers, with Kee taking up the central striker role and being unlucky not to earn a penalty after a heavy challenge from Luke Howell.
A lovely cross from Edwards then sought the head of Kee, but he was crowded out by the defence.
And it was two of the substitutes who created the equaliser, as Harness, on for Mousinho, was brought down in the box by Howell, and this time the referee did penalise the Daggers midfielder.
Kee took charge of the penalty, and though O'Brien went the right way, the ball squeezed just inside his right post.
And Burton completed the turnaround four minutes later, Harness again the architect as he played the ball to Kee's feet before the striker turned and finished from the tightest of angles.
BREWERS (4-4-2): McLaughlin; Edwards, Sharps (c), Cansdell-Sherriff, Taft; Akins, Weir, Mousinho, MacDonald; Knowles, Beavon; subs: Lyness (gk), McFadzean, Palmer, Slade, Doyle, Harness, Kee
DAGGERS (4-3-3): O'Brien; Partridge, Doe, Saah, Connors; Howell, Ogogo (c), Boucaud; Hemmings, Cureton, Chambers; subs: Cousins (gk), Porter, Labadie, Green, Goldberg, Gayle, Raymond.