20th Jan, 2019

Leamington looking to make it three in a row

Craig Gibbons 16th Mar, 2018

LEAMINGTON will hope to finally get back into National League North action this weekend when they welcome Nuneaton Town to The Phillips 66 Community Stadium.

The Brakes have not played a league game since February 24 – a 1-0 victory over Blyth Spartans – after Saturday’s home clash against play-off hopefuls Chorley was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.

That fixture has swiftly been re-arranged to take place on Tuesday, April 10 (KO 7.45pm).

With ten league games remaining, Paul Holleran’s Brakes lie 16th in the table, four points clear of the drop zone.

And having won their previous two league encounters, confidence of securing another year in the second tier of non-league football is on the up.

However, visiting Nuneaton will prove to be a tough nut to crack, especially after they thumped the Brakes 4-0 back in August.

It was a game which will not live long in the memory for Brakes fans as they watched their team capitulate with Holleran keeping his players in the dressing room for some time after the final whistle as they discussed what went wrong.

Three goals inside the opening half an hour meant that the August Bank Holiday weekend got off to the worst possible start for Leamington.

While they stemmed the tide in the second half most of it was played with ten men after Jamie Hood was shown a straight red card following an altercation after an offside decision.

At the time, Holleran said: “We’re well aware of the challenges stepping up to this level, but we’re making it very difficult for ourselves because we’re getting away from what we’re good at. Although we’ve been competitive in previous games, we got what we deserved.

“My changing room is full of players that have been let go from this level.

“That’s what we work with, and when they start coming away from the basics of football, which is competing, working, grafting, good discipline, good shape, then we’ll have many an afternoon like that.”

Since then Nuneaton have been hovering around mid-table and still have an outside chance of making the play-offs.

Town are currently on a nine-game unbeaten run in the league and it is going to take a much better performance this time round for Brakes to come away with a third consecutive win.

And with games to come against FC United of Manchester, AFC Telford United and Curzon Ashton – all of whom sit below the Brakes in the table – every point at this stage of the season will be crucial for Holleran’s men.

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