Vale hit magnificent seven

Lee Hughes fired a hat-trick to tighten Port Vale's grip on a top-three finish in League Two with a stunning 7-1 demolition of Burton.

Last Updated: 05/04/13 at 22:24

Lee Hughes: Scored a hat-trick in Vale's thumping win

Lee Hughes: Scored a hat-trick in Vale's thumping win

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The veteran striker struck twice from the penalty spot after opening rampant Vale's account with a firm header.

Chris Birchall curled in a third and the Football League's leading scorer Tom Pope swelled his tally to 32 for the season with the fifth, before substitute Ben Williamson scored twice late on as fifth-placed Burton were sent packing in front of a 10,978 crowd at Vale Park.

The Brewers were wilting as early as the 12th minute when Hughes polished off a Daniel Jones' cross.

Then when he was impeded by Zander Diamond, the frontman sent Stuart Tomlinson the wrong way from 12 yards, before Birchall struck with a stunning effort from the edge of the box.

Hughes completed his hat-trick with a second penalty five minutes after half-time, awarded for a trip on Birchall by Alex MacDonald.

Vale added to the rout with Pope rounding Tomlinson to slide in a fifth soon after.

And while Albion substitute Matt Paterson reduced the arrears with a long-range effort, Williamson latched on to Pope's flick-on and drove past Tomlinson before heading in Chris Shuker's free-kick to bring up the seventh in the final minute.

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Position Team P GD PTS
1 Burton Alb 10 4 22
2 Wycombe 10 7 21
3 Bury 10 8 20
4 Southend 10 5 20
5 Northamptn 10 5 17
6 Morecambe 10 3 16
7 Shrewsbury 10 4 15
8 Portsmouth 10 2 15
9 Cheltenham 10 1 15
10 Luton Town 10 1 15
11 Mansfield 10 -3 15
12 AFC W'don 10 0 14
13 Stevenage 10 0 14
14 Plymouth 10 3 13
15 Newport 10 1 13
16 Accrington 10 -5 13
17 Exeter 10 -3 12
18 Cambridge Utd 10 2 11
19 Dag + Red 10 -4 11
20 Tranmere 10 -2 9
21 York City 10 -4 9
22 Hartlepool 10 -9 8
23 Oxford Utd 10 -4 7
24 Carlisle 10 -12 6

Updated Mon, 29 Sep 2014

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