MATTY Taylor poached a stoppage-time equaliser to rescue a point for Oxford United at Burton Albion.

Karl Robinson’s side were slipping towards a fourth Sky Bet League One defeat of 2020, after Jamie Murphy had put Burton in front for the second time.

It came eight minutes after Dan Agyei had lifted the visitors, who had conceded to Lucas Akins’ scruffy opener.

That came in a costly first half where Liam Kelly picked up an injury and Alex Gorrin collected a suspension-triggering caution.

But while the gap to the play-off places grew to five points, Taylor’s late strike will help settle United down after Saturday’s 4-0 drubbing at Peterborough United.

United had to make a late alteration to their plans, after Jamie Mackie was called home by a family bereavement as the squad boarded the coach at their hotel.

That saw Matty Taylor keep his shirt, while Nathan Holland replaced the injured Marcus Browne and Kelly was preferred to Gorrin.

Burton made five changes of their own but started brightly and Ryan Edwards fired a warning shot just over from 20 yards after John Mousinho’s misdirected header fell his way.

United threatened for the first time on 15 minutes, when Holland glanced James Henry’s cross wide.

The visitors’ night went rapidly downhill after that, starting with Kelly pulling up with an injury.

Their gameplan had revolved around the Feyenoord loanee pulling the strings, but he cold not continue and Gorrin was thrust into the action.

Within a minute they were trailing, appearing to switch off from the restart.

Matty Taylor dropped into the left back spot and lost the ball, allowing Edwards to charge forward and cross for Akins to turn the ball in via a deflection from Dickie.

Following on from Saturday’s 4-0 defeat at Peterborough United, it was a desperately poor goal to give away.

United saw plenty of the ball as they sought a way back into the game, but moves kept breaking down once they reached the final third.

Burton looked more of a threat as they broke at pace and Eastwood made a good save to keep out Reece Hutchinson’s fierce strike.

Late in the half United’s night went from bad to worse, as Gorrin allowed Mousinho’s pass to run out of his control. The midfielder dived in on the busy Edwards and was cautioned for the tenth league game this season, triggering a two-game ban.

Taylor followed him into Stephen Martin’s notebook, for what the referee deemed a dive in the box.

United did at least muster a shot on target before the break, as Holland’s snap-shot was kept out by Brewers goalkeeper Kieran O’Hara’s legs after Josh Ruffels’s deflected cross fell kindly.

It had been a glum half for the visitors, but they came out firing after the break.

Burton were kept pinned in around their box, repeatedly clearing straight to United, who finally made it count on 63 minutes.

Holland won the ball in his own half and drove across halfway before finding Taylor. The striker slid a pass for Agyei to race through and beat O’Hara.

United fancied their chances of quickly adding another as the Brewers wobbled.

A nervy kick from O’Hara almost gifted them an opening, but when the ball was moved wide Holland’s shot was blocked.

Out of nowhere, though, Burton landed a sucker punch.

Murphy classily collected a high ball forward to beat Sam Long and made the most of the space on the edge of the box to flash a low shot in at Eastwood’s near post.

There was still almost a quarter of the game remaining, but United left it late to pile the pressure on.

Henry saw his close-range shot blocked wide for a corner, which looked like being the visitors’ big chance.

But from the set piece Gorrin did brilliantly to rescue the ball and his cross was turned goalwards by Rob Dickie for Taylor to stab home and salvage a point.

Burton Alb (4-3-3): O’Hara, Brayford, Shaughnessy, Nartey, Hutchinson (Thomas 90), Wallace, Edwards, Fraser (Powell 70), Murphy, Akins, Broadhead (Sbarra 66).

Unused subs: Garratt, Sbarra, O’Toole, Beardsley.

Booked: Powell.

Oxford Utd (4-3-3): Eastwood, Long (Forde 83), Dickie, Mousinho, Ruffels, Kelly (Gorrin 20), Brannagan, Sykes (Agyei 61), Henry, Taylor, Holland.

Unused subs: Stevens, Moore, Hanson, Thorne.

Booked: Gorrin, Taylor, Dickie.

Referee: Stephen Martin (Staffordshire).

Attendance: 2,278 (415 visitors).