Thank Goodness this match wasn't screened by Sky.

The satellite television channel had shown Oxford United's previous two games, but had they broadcast this one live, the second half would have changed armchair footie fans into thinking even watching England is fun.

It was bad enough for the 6,100 poor souls at the Kassam Stadium who had to witness it.

A strong, swirling wind made conditions very difficult and turned what should have been an interesting battle between two Conference play-off contenders into an untidy, scrappy mess.

That, and the fact that few players could pass the ball to their own teammates.

Burton were slightly the better of two poor teams on the day, and only a fine save from Billy Turley denied them a win.

Burton striker Jon Shaw beat the home side's offside trap with a clever run - although he looked offside - and advanced on goal on the right edge of the box.

Turley was off his line in a flash and showed smart reactions to turn Shaw's shot aside for a corner.

Burton, who had drawn their previous two away games 0-0, clearly came for the same result, especially with leading scorer Daryl Clare rested to the bench because of a hip injury.

Yet they also went close on 32 minutes when John Brayford's header from five yards at a corner struck the underside of the crossbar before Chris Hargreaves belted it to safety.

The U's had managed one effort on goal in the first half, an angled shot from Chris Zebroski that Burton keeper Kevin Poole fumbled above his head, but the angle was always going to be too great.

Yet after the break they were close to non-existent as an attacking force, such a contrast to their second-half showing five days earlier against Dagenham.

The wind, unusually heading towards the open end of the stadium, made it difficult to take corners as the ball wouldn't stop moving.

Nearly all the goalmouth action came in the opening 45 minutes.

Burton's Alex Nicholls was involved in two key moments early on. The right-sided midfielder swung over a great cross which just evaded Keith Gilroy, but brought the Brewers the game's first corner.

Moments later, Aaron Webster's defence-splitting pass presented an opportunity to Nicholls, who decided to shoot early, but screwed his shot wide from 25 yards.

Hargreaves, recalled to Oxford's midfield, headed a free-kick over from the edge of the box.

Andy Burgess produced a sublime piece of skill to beat two players in the centre of the park with some silky footwork, and he later tried his luck from 30 yards with a right-footed drive which flashed only a yard past Poole's right post.

United's strikers combined well when Rob Duffy headed on to Zebroski for his ambitious cross-shot.

A surging run from defence by centre back Mickey Corcoran created a shooting chance for Duffy at the other end, but Darren Stride's blocking tackle deflected it for a corner.

United's attacking plans were disrupted when Burgess hobbled off seven minutes before half-time with a hamstring injury.

Jim Smith, who had begun with a 3-4-3 formation again, replaced skipper Barry Quinn with midfielder Danny Rose at the interval, reverting to two centre backs for the second half.

The impressive Nicholls capitalised on a moment of indecision by Luke Foster to fire in an angled drive from the right which wasn't far away.

The home side suffered a further injury blow when Gavin Johnson limped off with an ankle injury early in the second half.

The U's tried to move the ball more quickly and play at a quicker tempo in the second half.

But why, when they won a free-kick a yard outside the box, did they then play it out wide for a cross that was easily defended?

That seemed nonsensical, and almost an admission that, without Burgess, they didn't have anyone who could hit a 19-yard shot.

The second half became horribly untidy, with players from both teams giving the ball away with constant regularity.

Too often United's moves slowed down when the ball reached Duffy, while Odubade and Anaclet just never got going.

And Luke Foster, who had been impressive in all his previous games, made a succession of mistakes in what was an uncomfortable second half for all concerned. Unless you were from Burton.