Our second pre-season friendly takes us to the New Windmill Gound, Royal Leamington Spa, to face “The Brakes” of Leamington - they compete in the same league as Alfreton Town if that gives you any idea of the quality of opposition to expect. The nickname of “The Brakes” is a bit similar to the history of ours as “The Saddlers” - a reference to a local industry that used to be the leading employer (by a country mile) but has since seen its influence very much diminished. Leamington’s good fortune was the setting up of a specialist manufacturer of brake and clutch components under the name “Lockheed”, and the football club was known as “Lockheed Leamington” for quite a while, only changing to “A P Leamington” when the business was bought out by Automotive Products. Subsequent changes have seen divisions sold off to Indian interests - the demise of BMC did no favours for Leamington!
One recognisable face that we might see on Tuesday is that of Reece Flanagan. He was named as a substitute for Leamington’s second pre-season friendly against Coventry City.
Leamington’s pre-season programme has brought these results so far:-
July 2nd Redditch United (A) Won 0-1
July 6th Coventry City (H) Lost 0-4
The difficulty in assessing Coventry City’s strength in that most recent match can be judged by the fact that Mark Robins put out two entirely different sides for the two halves of the game (Jordy Hiwula and Amadou Bakayoko appeared in the 2nd half).
Looking at reactions to our 2-1 defeat at Alfreton Town it would seem that we were strong in the opening stages (strong enough to take the lead after 6 minutes) but things started to go pear-shaped thereafter. Darrell Clarke will no doubt have much to mull over as he looks to establish winning ways in this next friendly.
Prediction? Still very much a guessing game, but let’s stick with the 0-2 away win that went so awry at Alfreton … but if the same prediction is constantly made, it has to come good at some point - right?