Pre Season Friendly
Saturday 8th July 2017
Brakes eased to a comfortable victory in their opening pre season friendly against a Daventry Town side who probably deserved a little more than what they got from the game.
At times the United Counties League Division 1 Champions gave their higher level opponents from down the A425 plenty to think about, but for the most part Leamington looked very sharp considering it was their first game of the warm up, moving the ball around with purpose and intelligence.
The hosts made a bright start, one of their central defenders powering a header just over the bar from a right wing corner in the opening exchanges but Brakes quickly turned the tables with a fine team goal on 14 minutes. Liam Canavan covered plenty of ground in his first forty five minutes for the club, and drove towards the Daventry penalty area, playing the ball in to fellow new boy Colby Bishop who returned it into his path with a neat backheel. Canavan then slipped a perfect ball into the path of Rob Thompson-Brown, who rifled it first time into the roof of the net.
Bishop worked hard for openings up front and when a loose ball was picked up just inside the Daventry half by another summer arrival, Joe Clarke, he drove in a low long range effort that was deflected home by the big striker. Unfortunately a raised offside flag saw the goal ruled out.
Callum Gittings took an almighty whack which saw him withdrawn after several minutes treatment, and left him with an ice pack on his leg for the remainder of the half. Fortunately physio Pete Denham was able to report afterwards that he wasn’t badly injured. Trialist Tom Rankin, who came on in his place, made a good impression, including one fine challenge in midfield to halt a Daventry attack.
More good work from Bishop saw him backheel Canavan in for a poked shot that was held by the Daventry keeper. Courtney Baker-Richardson then robbed the home side’s left back inside the penalty area before crashing a shot just over the bar, before Canavan lifted another effort just over.
On 31 minutes Leamington extended their lead, Joe Magunda’s ball in from the right was struck first time by Baker-Richardson, and diverted into the net by Canavan.
They quickly added a third, Bishop bludgeoning his way through the Daventry defence on the right, the ball being forced home from close range by Baker-Richardson despite the best efforts of the goalkeeper.
Bishop so nearly bagged a deserved goal for his efforts when played clean through by Rankin, but took one touch too many as he went past the keeper, making the angle too tight for a shot at goal.
Number four arrived right on the half time whistle however, Thompson-Brown firing in a cross-shot from the left that whistled into the net.
Half time substitute Kurtis Revan quickly picked up the baton as the second half commenced, getting into space on the right to crack a low drive across the keeper into the far corner for a fifth Leamington goal.
Young keeper Charlie Hornby acquitted himself well, making a couple of decent saves from Daventry’s number 10.
Ahmed Obeng’s goalbound effort was somehow diverted over the bar by a defender, before he was fouled in the box, allowing Thompson-Brown to complete his hat trick from the penalty spot.
The scoring was complete soon afterwards when Revan was brought down by the goalkeeper as he charged clear into the box. Stefan Moore stepped up this time and saw his spot kick well saved, but the ball fell kindly for him to tap home the rebound.
This was a useful first workout for Leamington against a Daventry side now jointly managed by former Brakes defender Arron Parkinson. Another former player and coach, Ian King, was also on the bench directing operations for the hosts. For Brakes, the four new boys who featured all did well, as did the youth team players who stepped off the bench.
Attendance: Approx 140 + 1 dog (Head counted by Lee)
Daventry team unknown.
Leamington: Tony Breeden (Charlie Hornby, 46), Richard Taundry (Shay Nicholson, 52), Connor Gudger, Joe Clarke (Courtney Baker-Richardson, 65), Jamie Hood (Joe Magunda, 61), Joe Magunda (Junior English, 46), Courtney Baker-Richardson (Ahmed Obeng, 46), Callum Gittings (Tom Rankin, 20), Colby Bishop (Stefan Moore, 52), Liam Canavan (Charlie Marsh, 46), Rob Thompson-Brown (Kurtis Revan, 46).