24th Apr, 2019

Brakes steer themselves to safety to ensure National League North football next season

Ben Tyler 15th Apr, 2019

LEAMINGTON came from behind to beat Alfreton Town 3-1 and secure their National League North status for the 2019/20 season.

Goals from Callum Gittings, Jordan Murphy and Jack Edwards were enough to complete the win, and extended the Brakes unbeaten run to three matches.

Upon securing their safety, manager Paul Holleran urged his side to not rest on their laurels, and to end the season on a high going into the last three fixtures.

“I said last week before the Curzon Ashton game that we needed to approach these last four fixtures in the right manner, because we didn’t want the season to go flat,” he said.

“We want to keep pushing, especially at home, and finish as high as we can, score a few more goals and be positive really.

“For the majority of the game today I thought we did really well. We were disappointed with their goal obviously because it was something we had spoken about.

“There were lots of seven and eight out of ten performances out there.

“We’re three points better off, we’ve scored a few good goals, so it’s been a really good day for us against a good side.”

The Brakes keep themselves afloat in the division as the club approaches ten years since Holleran took charge at the Phillips 66 Community Stadium, and can consider their survival a huge achievement considering they were deemed favourites for the drop.

Alfreton looked set to tarnish Leamington’s game plan when taking a seventh-minute lead through Jordan Sinnott – who slammed home a volley inside the penalty area, as the visitors enjoyed the lion’s share of chances and possession.

Moments later, Tony Breeden had to be alert to stop Alfreton finding a second, and pulled off a superb save to keep out Richard Peniket’s header.

Leamington eventually got going around the 20 minute mark, as they began to venture deeper into the visitor’s half, but they were still unable to muster any real chances of note.

There were calls for Alfreton’s Adam Curry to see red when he collided with Murphy, with suspicions of an elbow making contact with the Leamington forward, but he only saw yellow.

The Brakes hauled themselves on level terms ten minutes before half-time, when Callum Gittings thumped home his third of the season at a decisive moment in the match.

Holleran’s charges then continued to build up a head of steam and resumed play in the second-half with a go-ahead goal.

Murphy burst past the onrushing keeper and a defender to slot into an empty net, an emphatic goal that was deserving of the lead.

Gittings almost had a second, albeit for the reactions of Tom Nicholson, but it would not matter as Edwards swept home a rebound following Colby Bishop’s strike against the underside of the bar.

Despite their best efforts to claim a fourth to add gloss to the victory, it did not come, though Holleran and the Brakes faithful would not care as the full-time whistle sounded their safety.

The Brakes go in search of a victory away to Kidderminster Harriers on Good Friday (3pm), before hosting relegated Nuneaton Borough on Easter Monday (3pm).

Online Editions

Catch up on your local news by reading our e-editions on the Leamington Observer.

Digital Advertising

Advertise on the Leamington Observer to boost your online presence.

Printing

We can provide all of your printing needs at competitive rates.

Heart2Heart Dating

Looking for love? Start searching to find a new date on heart2heart dating.