Steven Schumacher

Schumacher's Burton Preview

Sync Fixtures

For the third week in a row, Steven Schumacher and his players have hitched up their wagons and set out in a north-easterly direction.

This week’s destination is the Pirelli Stadium, home of Burton Albion. Just before that, rather fittingly given the major tournament that begins later on the weekend, Argyle will stop off at St George’s Park, England’s national football centre, to train on Friday before the game just a couple of miles away, on Saturday.

At roughly four hours from Plymouth, all being well, Burton is rather remarkably considered a ‘not too bad’ journey. Considering, that is the recent mammoth trips to Grimsby Town and Lincoln City.

Schumacher, though, will not be complaining about the distance covered. Not only does it come with the territory of being involved with Plymouth Argyle, but the boss appreciates that the Green Army will cover those same miles, at some expense, and with a little less comfort than on Argyle’s travelling coach.

And those fans will, once again, be travelling in their numbers. The Burton Albion away end holds a shade under 1,700 supporters – it was sold out four days before the fixture, such is the Green Army’s clamour to Schumacher and his table toppers in action.

“I’m sick of the motorway,” said Schumacher, wryly. “It’s our third away game on the spin, but we’ve sold out again, which is brilliant.

“We won’t complain, because we know how important it is to our fans who follow us up and down the country. It’s harder for them than it is for us, the way we travel. We won’t complain about it, and we’ll go and put in a performance that hopefully gets us three points.

“When you walk out the tunnel, and see all your fans behind the goal, it gives you a huge lift. We all understand how important it is for our fans. The distances they travel is hard work, and financially it costs a load of money.

“We do speak about that, and we understand that the bare minimum we do is put 100% effort in. They fans deserve it. The players – credit to them – have done that this year. We’ve picked up some great results away from home.

“As long they put the effort it, I’ll appreciate it, and I’m sure the fans will as well.”

One think guaranteed is that none of the travelling Argyle fans have ever seen their team win at the Pirelli, because in seven visits, the Pilgrims are yet to emerge victorious. Lately, draws of the been the order of the day, with the last four fixtures Argyle have played there ending level, including a 0-0 last season.

Burton are 23rd in the league, but showing signs of improvement since Dino Maamria swapped the assistant’s role for the top job, just over two months ago.

Schumacher knows something about that transition, and knows a thing or two about what to expect at Burton, too.

“It’s never an easy game, to go away and play Burton,” he said. “Playing there as a player, I remember what it was always like. A tight pitch, fans right on top of you. The style can be that the game is stop-start. It was like that last season, and the season before wasn’t a great spectacle to watch.

“We just have to go there and put in a performance that gets you a result. We understand what they are all about. They’ve been good at home lately. I watched the game against Charlton, I thought they played really well.

“They’ve got some firepower in the team, like I feel I say every week. That’s what we are up against, and we have to make sure we play well, battle well, compete – and then pass the ball and play our football. That’s how we will have the best chance of winning.”

World Cup at Home park