Boro go for a Burton as Harrad doubles up

Burton Albion 2 Middlesbrough 1: Striker adds insult to injury time as his second goal stuns Championship side

Middlesbrough lost a place in today's fourth-round draw and almost certainly their most prized asset in one calamitous afternoon. Having gone into their tie against League Two stragglers Burton without David Wheater, who is on the verge of joining Bolton, the 1997 finalists were stunned by two late goals from Shaun Harrad, the winner coming in the last minute of stoppage time.

Harrad, who arrived at the Pirelli Stadium on a free transfer from Notts County when Burton were still a Conference club under the managership of Nigel Clough, has himself been the subject of transfer speculation, with Northampton and cash-rich Crawley both seeking to prise him from east Staffordshire. If this was his final game for Burton it could scarcely have been scripted better, the 26-year-old striker equalising in the 82nd minute before his 13th goal of the season shattered Boro.

Paul Peschisolido, Clough's successor, was perhaps unduly harsh when he suggested that Harrad, a penalty-box predator starved of service and seemingly short of sharpness after flu, had made scant impact before his goals. "Shaun didn't play especially well apart from his goals," the Burton managersaid. "He didn't do an awful lot. But what a way to answer me [after leaving him out of the starting line-up since late November]."

Peschisolido added that in the first half his side "showed Middlesbrough way too much respect. Itold the lads: 'You're not playing Barcelona.' "

The dapper Canadian is, of course, married to Karren Brady, the vice-chairman of West Ham, which naturally answered the question of who he would like Burton to play in the next round. They also have a score to settle with Manchester United, having held them at home before losing 5-0 in a replay in the third round five years ago, although supporters would doubtless settle for a money-spinning trip to neighbouring Derby if they progress against Crawley tomorrow.

Tony Mowbray, the Middlesbrough manager, bemoaned another damaging late goal. "It's the third time in six matches we've conceded in the last minute," he said. "It happened at Doncaster and Leeds and it's something that keeps hitting us. The bigger disappointment was that we didn't take our chances. If we'd done that, we wouldn't have been in this position."

Pressed on Wheater's imminent departure from the Riverside, Mowbray added: "Things are happening and that's why he's not here. I'd said we'd play the strongest team available, but by today he wasn't." Bolton, looking for a central defender to replace the widely coveted Gary Cahill, are favourites to seal a £2.5m deal.

Which plum Burton might pull out looked like so much fanciful speculation when Middlesbrough's dominance was finally rewarded by a goal shortly before the hour. Russell Penn fouled Leroy Lita and then preventedMiddlesbrough from taking the free-kick quickly. After a scuffle between several players, and complaints to the fourth official from Mowbray and his No 2, Mark Venus, Gary O'Neil liftedthe ball over the defensive wall and into Burton's net from 25 yards.

Middlesbrough, the bookies' pre-season favourites for promotion to the Premier League, showed why they are fighting against relegation to the third tier. They were bereft of a cutting edge, with Kris Boyd again unableto live up to his fox-in-the-box reputation, and their inability to make a 45-place League disparity between the sides tell gave Burton confidence.

With eight minutes remaining, Harrad's spectacular scissors-kick pulled Burton level. Even then, Middlesbrough looked the likelier winners, until Tony McMahon fouled Harrad in the third minute of time added on. When Scott Malone's free-kick broke to him off Matthew Bates, the criminally unmarked Harrad dispatched the loose ball to put Burton into the last 32 for the first time .

Referee: Steve Tanner

Man of the match: Harrad

Match rating: 8/10

Attendance: 5,236

general electionThis quiz matches undecided voters with the best party for them
Arts and Entertainment
Keira Knightley and Matthew Macfadyen starred in the big screen adaptation of Austen's novel in 2005
tvStar says studios are forcing actors to get buff for period roles
Prince William and his wife Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge show their newly-born daughter, their second child, to the media outside the Lindo Wing at St Mary's Hospital in central London, on 2 May 2015.
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before