MATCH REPORT: LEAMINGTON 1-0 BURTON ALBION
Leamington secure progress to the final in the Birmingham County Cup after an entertaining encounter against Burton Albion.
The Brewers missed countless chances before the Brakes took the lead in the second half through Callum Gittings and Paul Holleran’s side remained resolute to secure a narrow victory.
The National League North side made five changes from the team that attained a point against Boston United last time out with captain Jake Lane, top scorer Dan Turner and Kelsey Mooney in the starting line-up.
The League One side named a strong team with first team regulars such as Frazer Blake-Tracy, Harry Chapman and Louis Moult in the starting line-up alongside academy players.
The hosts threatened to take the lead in the opening stages. Turner went close with a long range attempt which went wide before Mooney was denied with a smart save by Matej Kovar.
The visitors began to grow into the game after a slow start and went close when James Mace made a mistake and Tom Hewlett made a precise pass to release Moult who was denied with a superb save from Jake Weaver.
Burton almost broke the deadlock after a delightful cross from Alfie Williams found Moult who missed the target from close range.
The Brewers had another huge chance through Hewlett who hit the post and Moult fired the rebound wide from an acute angle.
Leamington had two chances before half time. Kovar spilled a tame shot but claimed at the second attempt before Mooney came close with a header after brilliant build up play from Parker.
The Brakes had a strong start to the second half and went ahead after a corner from Parker was headed home by Gittings past the helpless Kovar.
Paul Holleran’s side should have added to the advantage minutes later after Parker made another delightful pass behind the defence but Mooney lacked composure and curled his shot wide.
The National League North side had another huge chance when Mooney who was a threat throughout cut inside and shot inches wide after good build up play by Gittings.
Burton struggled to create in the second half but came close when Charlie Williams had a shot which went wide before Charlie Lakin had a long range attempt. However, Weaver made a superb save to secure the clean sheet.
The Brakes should have doubled the lead with minutes remaining when Mooney was denied with a remarkable save from Kovar. However, Paul Holleran’s side withstood late pressure to secure a place in the final against Alvechurch or Stourbridge.