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Burton have so far cruised by in the EFL Trophy, winning all three of their group stage games, defeating Bradford City 4-0 last time out in the competition. 

The other victories in the previous stage came in a 4-2 win against Leicester City Under-21s, and an impressive 3-2 victory away at Sheffield Wednesday, who are currently third in League One.

However, the Brewers have struggled so far this season in the third tier, amassing just 14 points from 19 league games, a record that leaves them 22nd in the league standings. 

There are clearly some defensive frailties for Dino Maamria to fix, as his side have conceded 40 goals up to this point, the most of any side in the division, and their opponents will look to exploit this on Tuesday night. 

Judging off the Brewers’ last game, there is some cause for optimism, as they managed to draw 2-2 with League One’s top side, Plymouth Argyle, with Adrian Mariappa netting a 97th-minute equaliser to stop them from falling to the bottom of the table.

Tranmere did not boast as good a record as Burton in the group stages, securing their place in the next round with a tally of five points, crucially winning 1-0 against Crewe Alexandra in their last EFL Trophy outing.

In their opening match, Micky Mellon’s side defeated Bolton Wanderers on penalties, having drawn 2-2 in 90 minutes, before losing 5-3 to Leeds United Under-21s in the second game.

The Super White Army had enjoyed somewhat of a revival in fortunes, winning five in a row in League Two from the end of September until beating Crewe 3-0 under the lights on a Friday night in the middle of October. 

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However, Mellon’s men are now on a run of seven games without a win in all competitions, and they lost 2-0 at home to AFC Wimbledon at the weekend, a result that meant they dropped to 12th in League Two.

Burton will consider League One their main priority, and so it is likely that they will make a few changes to the side on Tuesday night.

Adrian Mariappa should drop to the bench, as he has only just come back from injury, with Sam Hughes instead starting alongside Adedeji Oshilaja at centre-back.

Victor Adeboyejo has eight goals to his name in League One this season, and so he should continue to lead the line, being supported by the trio of Joe Powell, Mustapha Carayol and Sam Winnall in advanced midfield roles.

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