Leamington boss Paul Holleran says his side will go into tomorrow’s FA Cup third qualifying round tie against Worcester City on the front foot despite a 3-1 defeat at North Ferriby in midweek.
Brakes found themselves two goals down inside the first 15 minutes after again enduring a nightmare midweek journey to East Yorkshire.
But while there were similarities to the 4-1 defeat suffered there last season, Holleran said the performances were markedly different.
“I’m disappointed with the result but not too disappointed with the performance,” said Holleran.
“Last year could have been a cricket score but on Tuesday night, on another day we could have got something.
“Their first goal was a wonder strike and their second was an absolute fluke.
“We then score our best goal of the season and we’re on the front foot.
“But they get a set play and it bounces seven or eight times in our box before they score.
“At half-time we said to stay focused and we’ve had two great chances and their keeper has produced an excellent save from Danny Newton.
“But it’s gone now and we’re looking forward to the FA Cup game - we need to get back on it.”
While Holleran was loathe to use their journey time as an excuse for the defeat, he did admit he would be delighted if the fixture was on a Saturday should the two teams meet again next season.
“Yet again we got stuck at roadworks.
“It’s hard at our level to get the preparation right and it’s not helped when you’re stuck on a coach for four hours.
“It is not an excuse but it is difficult.”
Holleran rang the changes for Tuesday night’s clash with James Mace, Richard Batchelor, Jack Edwards and Aron Wint all restored to the starting line-up.
And while Chilton was left out with one eye on the FA Cup clash, the Brakes manager said the other switches highlight the strength of the squad at his disposal.
“Lee Chilton wouldn’t have played because it was his first full game back last Saturday and we want him to start against Worcester,” he said.
“But whereas last season a couple of players played with niggles, this year we don’t need to play players who are 80 per cent.
“I don’t see Batch, Mace Edwards and Wint as fringe players and had we had the full squad available the starting line-up on Tuesday night wouldn’t have been much different.”
One player who is a doubt for the clash with Worcester, however, is Jordan Goddard, who picked up a nasty looking leg injury during Saturday’s 4-0 win over Hyde.
Goddard did not travel to Church Road and Holleran is keeping his fingers crossed he will recover in time for the FA Cup encounter.
“How he got away without a broken leg I don’t know,” said Holleran.
“He lifted his leg away and that might have saved him.
“We’re hoping it looks a lot worse than it is.”
With a large attendance anticipated for tomorrow’s third qualifying round tie, Brakes are asking supporters of both sides to help with travel and parking by using the free park n ride bus service, Brakes Trust mini-bus or by car-sharing.