Gills sub nets first goal to clinch club's first ever win at Burton.
A last gasp winner from Josh Rees sealed all three points for Gills in a 3-2 win at the Pirelli Stadium on Saturday.
After goals from Elliott List and Callum Reilly had put the Gills 2-0 ahead at the break a spirited second half display from the Brewers, led by Scott Fraser, saw the Brewers draw level but sub Rees was on hand to poke home with only seconds to play as Gillingham headed back to Kent with all three points.
Gillingham made one change to the side that had beaten Cardiff City last weekend with Tom Eaves missing out through injury. Regan Charles-Cook came in to the starting line-up as Steve Lovell kept with the back five that kept out the Premier League side just a week ago.
The first chance of the game went the way of the hosts. A free-kick from the left-hand side was won at the back-post by Liam Boyce but the attacker saw his header cannon back off the bar, much to the relief of Tomas Holy.
Moments later and an incisive through ball saw the ball cut back to Lucas Akins but the forward struck wide as the Brewers made a positive start. Next to come close was Jamie Allen, although the midfielder’s dipping volley was always going over.
It was chance after chance for Burton Albion, who were looking to respond to Wednesday’s defeat at Manchester City. Firstly, Ben Fox was denied on the line by Luke O’Neill before a driving run from Lucas Akins resulted in the powerful forward shooting straight at Holy, a yard either side and it would surely have been advantage Burton.
The Brewers would be left ruing those misses as in the 23rd minute Elliott List gave the Gills the lead. A ball forward fell to List on the halfway line, the forward drove at the Brewers defence and slotted past Bradley Collins to give the Gills against the run of play. An excellent finish.
Indeed, List was nearly in again minutes later, a ball up to the in-form striker saw him again, one on one with the Burton defence, but this time Bradley Collins was able to grasp the ball.
Despite the goal, the hosts still looked threatening whenever they went forward and the next man to come close was Will Miller, but his free-kick hit the outside of the post and bounced away.
Gills thought they had extended their lead in the 42nd minute although the linesman had seen a handball from List as the Gills celebrations were cut short.
Just before the interval and the Gills were to double their lead from the penalty spot. After a Luke O’Neill free-kick was handled in the Burton wall, Callum Reilly stepped up and sent the keeper the wrong way to put the Gills in the ascendancy. 0
Neither side made a change at the break, but The Brewers continued to dictate play, a cut back to the edge of the box saw but the effort was blocked by Alex Lacey.
With the game opening up, a Josh Parker through ball played in List at a tight angle but keeper’ Collins was able to get behind it to keep the score at 2-0.
Burton reduced the deficit in the 51st minute. Gillingham failed to deal with a corner and after good footwork to beat a couple of men, Scott Fraser nestled the ball in to the far corner via the post, to halve the deficit.
Less than ten minutes later and Burton were level. A break from the hosts saw the same man again, Fraser, have time in the box to take a touch and bury an effort in to the top corner to leave Holy with no chance.
Suddenly, it was all square at the Pirelli, although it was hard to argue that the Brewers didn’t deserve it. List had been causing problems for the Brewers backline all afternoon and he was close to getting in behind again, but a last-ditch tackle kept the scores level.
At the other end, both Reece Hutchinson and Lucas Akins came close to giving Burton the lead, but both missed the target from distance.
Gills looked to freshen things up with the introduction of Josh Rees and Brandon Hanlan and it nearly worked instantly as a Hanlan flick-on played in List but the forward was denied by a strong hand from Bradley Collins, who turned it behind for a corner.
With less than five minutes left to play Burton’s two goal hero nearly added a third. Another impressive run from Fraser was only ended by Alex Lacey.
Gills were to find the killer blow in the 90th minute. A ball from Josh Rees slotted Brandon Hanlan in down the left channel, the forward cut the ball back to Elliott List who showed good composure to tee up Rees who made no mistake to send the Gills fans crazy in the corner.
And that Rees effort turned out to be the winner as the Gills defence held firm to send the visiting fans home happy back down the M1.
Burton Albion: Collins, Brayford, Hutchinson, Turner, Fraser, Allen, Akins, Boyce, Fox (Clarke 70) Miller, Quinn
Unused subs: Bywater, McFadsean, Templeton, Sbarra, Wallace, Cole
Gillingham: Holy, O’Neill, Zakuani (Ehmer 88), Lacey, Ogilvie (Hanlan 57), Garmston; Reilly, Byrne, Parker; Charles-Cook (Rees 76), List
Unused subs: Hadler, Simpson, Mbo, Nash.
Referee: Mr Peter Wright