Burton go clear at top of League One after narrow win at Sheffield United
Burton extended their lead atop Sky Bet League One to four points after Luke Akins' second-half goal lifted them to a 1-0 victory over Sheffield United at Bramall Lane.
Akins netted four minutes after the interval with a cool finish as the Brewers put daylight between themselves and nearest rivals Wigan, who could only draw at Millwall.
The visitors were given an early scare, however, when Blades striker Billy Sharp had a header cleared off the line by defender Phil Edwards.
Burton responded almost immediately at the other end with Calum Butcher's powerful drive forcing United goalkeeper George Long into a neat save down to his left.
The lively Mark Duffy then found himself through on goal after a neat reverse by Edwards but again Long was equal to the shot, tipping it wide of the post.
Long, though, was beaten in the 49th minute when Akins ran on to a defence splitting pass from Damien McCroy and slotted the ball into bottom right corner.
Akins could have doubled the lead following a mix-up between Collins and Long but the Blades custodian recovered and parried away a stinging drive from the goalscorer.
Akins went close again but, in a second half of few chances, both sides found themselves bogged down in a midfield battle.
United substitute Dominic Calvert-Lewin missed the target with a point blank header late on as Burton held on for all three points.