Gloucester City and AFC Telford on Leamington's festive fixture list

Injury-hit Brakes beaten by Kettering but looking forward to bouncing back in holiday games

Brakes have Gloucester City home and away and AFC Telford on their festive fixture list (Picture by Sally Ellis v Bradford Park Avenue earlier this month)

Leamington will be hoping for a change of fortunes for their three festive fixtures - after their injury-hit side were well-beaten by Kettering Town last weekend.

Two of those games for Paul Holleran’s side are against Gloucester City - away on Boxing Day (Sunday, December 26) and then at the Your Co-op Community Stadium on Sunday, January 2.

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In between AFC Telford will be their visitors on Tuesday, December 28.

Both clubs are below 13th-placed Brakes in National League North, with Gloucester 18th and Telford bottom of the table.

Without a handful of key players, Brakes conceded three goals in the last 15 minutes on Saturday, as the Poppies recorded their first ever win 4-0 at Harbury Lane on a miserable December afternoon.

Jack Edwards, Joe Clarke, Simeon Maye, Devon Kelly-Evans were all missing from midfield as Joe Parker and Callum Gittings stepped in, while Matt Sargeant continued in goal in the absence of Jake Weaver and Kyle Morrison was handed the captain’s armband for the first time.

In a club interview after the game Holleran said: “I’m looking forward to the next week and getting stuck in, hopefully adding to the squad, getting a couple of players back over Christmas - and then let’s respond; because most people probably think Leamington will come falling down the league, but I’ve got a group of players that want to stay in the top half of the table, and they will work very hard to do that.”

He said Kettering did what Kettering are very good at, putting the ball in good areas, and backed it up.

“We had a good period then for half an hour really where we were the better side.

“And then we fell apart at the end,” added the Brakes boss.

“I’m well aware the group needs more - we’ve done a deal this week with a good player from League 1, it’s all been sorted, but sadly he’s part of a Covid batch, so we won’t have him until next week now.

“With a number of players not training, it’s caught up with us.

“I’m not making excuses, but it has. This is our first blip, our first run of games where we haven’t managed to get a win.

“Performance levels have been ok, we’ve dug in and worked hard, but I think today was a bit of a wake up call for everyone that we can’t carry on putting square pegs in round holes.”